In summer 2010, ultra distance runners Sarah Edson and Molly Fitzpatrick starred in the TV program Amazing Race: China Rush, where they competed with and befriended Maasai warriors Paul Lebeneyio and Francis Merinyi. From that friendship sparked an idea: to host the first-ever ultramarathon in Kenya, the land of distance running, with the intent of promoting girls' education. Thus was born the Amazing Maasai Ultra.
One year later, on June 23rd, 2011, 13 international distance runners from eight countries around the globe joined with more than 90 Kenyan runners to compete in the Amazing Maasai Ultra's inaugural half (21km), full (42km), and ultra (75km) marathons. Through race fee proceeds, sponsorships, and donations, the Amazing Maasai Girls Project raised more than US$25,000 to fund scholarships to send 20 local Maasai girls who lack the financial means to attend high school, thus averting a life of arranged marriage and limited economic opportunity.
Through race co-founders Sarah and Molly's personal vignettes and race photographer Paul Ark's dynamic marathon images and intimate portraits, the Amazing Maasai Ultra 2011 chronicles the race from inception to the finish line to the awards ceremony, and highlights the cause of girls' education in Kenya. The book is also a travelogue of Paul's safari though Lake Nakuru National Park and Maasai Mara National Reserve, showcasing all the splendor Kenya has to offer.
This book is being sold at cost plus a US$10.00 mark-up (including the ebook format). This mark-up is contributed directly to the Amazing Maasai Girls Project in your name and is fully tax deductable as a charitable contribution. In turn, all contributions are earmarked to fund scholarships for highly-qualified but financially-challenged girls to attend the St. Francis Girls' Secondary School, Kimanjo Mixed School and Il-Polei Mixed School in Kenya's Rift Valley.
The stunning success and critical praise of 2011's race has paved the way for The Amazing Maasai Ultra 2012's half, full and ultramarathons, scheduled for September 29, 2012. For more information: www.amazingmaasaiultra.org
(Note: due to imperfections in the digital conversion process, the ebook may contain minor text formatting glitches)
The Amazing Maasai Girls Project is a U.S.-based non-profit organization that promotes the education and empowerment of girls in the Maasai communities of Kenya's Upper Rift Valley through The Amazing Maasai Ultra, Kenya's first ultra-distance marathon.
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