Myrtle Beach City Council turns down Race 13.1 - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Myrtle Beach City Council turns down Race 13.1

Race 13.1 won't come to Myrtle Beach Race 13.1 won't come to Myrtle Beach
Race 13.1 founder/CEO presents to city council Race 13.1 founder/CEO presents to city council

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - A half marathon that is already in seven states is interested in making Myrtle Beach its next destination.

However, Myrtle Beach City Council denied the special event permit and co-sponsorship request from Race 13.1 at a council meeting Tuesday.

Race 13.1 is based out of Raleigh. The company's founder and CEO, John Kane, wanted to host a half marathon, 10k and 5k on December 6, 2015 starting and ending at Coastal Grand Mall. That date is a month and a half after the Myrtle Beach Mini Marathon and three months before the Myrtle Beach Marathon.

"In our experience, we've found that if you're a couple months apart, particularly with the half marathon distance, that it really is a net positive. Kind of a rising tide raises all ships," Kane said. "It makes that city hopefully more of a destination running city."

Kane estimated more than 750 runners and a similar number of spectators would participate in the event and contribute $3,000 to the city's revenue. Plus, Kane said those numbers would only increase if the race returns.

"Races grow if they're done well year over year," he said. "It takes time for them to get established."

However, City Manager John Pedersen recommended council deny the request. He said he worried the timing would take runners away from the other races. The biggest concern was traffic closures, which SCDOT would have to approve and accommodate. Race 15.1 had devised a route in conjunction with Myrtle Beach Police Department to minimize traffic issues, but city council still voted against the race altogether.

"It's relatively small in terms of its economic impact," Pedersen said. "I just don't think we ought to ask our residents to deal with that inconvenience every time that someone wants to do a race."

Kane said he hopes Myrtle Beach City Council may consider allowing him to host the race at some point in the future.

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