Dozens of runners work to improve health of oily Gulf - - The News for South Mississippi

Dozens of runners work to improve health of oily Gulf


By Danielle Thomas – bio | email

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - People tired of feeling helpless during this oil crisis decided to do their part by putting on their running shoes. The Sweat'n Oil 5k race raised money for the Gulf Restoration Network.

As coast residents enjoyed the day fishing, boating or swimming on Front Beach in Ocean Springs, the brightly colored oil boom reminded them of the potential environmental disaster lurking over the horizon.

"We've seen all this boom in Louisiana that's not working, and it doesn't really make me feel any better,"said runner Randy Smith.

Catherine Lemon said, "It is frustrating to feel helpless, but I guess we just have to leave it up to those experts to do what they can."

Dozens of people walked, ran or jogged in the Sweat'N Oil 5k race but not for their personal health. They ran for the health of an oil-ridden Gulf of Mexico.

"I don't agree with what's happening, all the government-BP thing," Nick Chapman said. "So I wanted to try to see if I could help out, make some donations, help get the oil out of our Gulf."

"Clean it up and prevent any damage to our shores," said Ashlee Douglass.

Organizers said proceeds will go the Gulf Restoration Network as the organization tries to assist in oil spill cleanup, restore the Gulf's natural beauty and help communities directly impacted by the spill.

The race was the brainchild of Will Crane who lives in Alaska. In just two and a half weeks, he said he accomplished his mission with the help of friends and family.

"A common thing I've heard is people asking what can we do? What can I do? So being a Mississippian from Ocean Springs, I said, 'Hey. This is a good idea,'"Crane said.

Crane said he wants to show that everyone can do something to help protect our Gulf Coast no matter how small.

Crane said, "One man with a rock can change the face of the world so hopefully this helps. Hopefully it gets people out doing something. That would be great. "

Organizers say nearly 70 people came out for the race.

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