BAXTER SPRINGS - Runners from all over passed through Southeast Kansas on Sunday, Oct. 1, as part of the epic Mother Road Marathon.

A truly one-of-a-kind running event, the Mother Road Marathon consisted of three races that navigated through three states on historic Route 66. In the titular marathon, runners passed through six local communities, getting a unique look at Cherokee County along the way.

The Mother Road Half Marathon began bright and early Sunday morning in Baxter Springs. Runners will traveled through four towns in two states on their way to the eventual finish in Joplin, Missouri. The Mother Road 5K was 3.1 mile course around Schifferdecker Park and golf course in Joplin, before ending on old Route 66.

This is the only marathon along Route 66 that runs through three states and follows “The Mother Road.” It will be the only full marathon in the immediate area, according to race director Tom Rogers of Joplin-based Twelveone Group, an event consulting, marketing and management firm. It’s also a qualifier for the Boston Marathon.