Maritime Race Weekend attracts runners from afar

Joel and Evelyn Taylor at the Loch Ness Marathon in 2010

Published in: Weekly News
Written by: Joanne Oostveen

Eastern Passage is probably not the first place most runners from the southern U.S. would pick to do a race.

But that is where Evelyn and Joel Taylor, residents of Sanford, Florida are heading when they come to Nova Scotia for the first time this fall.

The seasoned runners are travelling to the picturesque Fisherman’s Cove for the inaugural 5k race at the Maritime Race Weekend on Sept. 15.

“No, we have never been to Nova Scotia before,” said the 51-year-old Evelyn in a phone interview. “We heard about the beauty of the province, did some research and found out there is a race there in September. So we booked it. Sight unseen.”

Halifax first appeared on their radar when they went to Maine in 2004 for the Portland Marathon.

“Then after going to Scotland in 2010 for the Loch Ness Marathon, our interest was renewed,” said Evelyn. “Joel is a sailor, so the maritime history of Halifax is of great interest to the both of us. We are really looking forward to finally getting to Nova Scotia.”

Evelyn has been running all her life. At age 38 she got the marathon bug after joining the Big Sky Wind Drinkers Running Club in Bozeman, Montana.

“That was the beginning for me,” she said. “That was the first of 15 full marathons over the years.”

Taylor ran marathons in 13 states, Washington, D.C. and in Scotland two years ago.

The couple moved around a lot because of Joel’s work.

It was always Evelyn’s goal to run a full marathon in all 50 states, but she began to have some hip problems after the Loch Ness Marathon.

“Things were going south then and I knew it,” said Taylor, a New Orleans native. “But now I run on trails and run shorter distances. I have no regrets.”

When they went online looking for a shorter run, Eastern Passage caught their eye, so they registered for the 5K at the Maritime Race Weekend.

“We are also booked to go to Wolfville, take a tour through the wineries in the Valley and are going to Cape Breton. We are really looking forward to visiting your province.”

Stacy Chesnutt, co-race director of the Maritime Race Weekend said she fell in love with Fisherman’s Cove, too.

“I am from Tennessee and had lived here for a few years before I went to the Fisherman’s Cove spot. It is beautiful and I fell in love with the charm of Nova Scotia.”