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University of Central Missouri
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Knitting Runner Sets Sights on ‘Doily Dash’ During KC Marathon

Contact: Jeff Murphy
WARRENSBURG, MO (Oct. 14, 2015) – In what he calls the “Doily Dash,” University of Central Missouri faculty member David Babcock will add a new twist to the 2015 Wadell & Reed Marathon when he participates Saturday, Oct. 17 in Kansas City. As a way to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Association, he will attempt to create the world’s largest doily at the same time he is running in the event.

David Babcock
David Babcock, associate professor of art and design at the University of Central Missouri, displays an example of a yarn mat he knitted while running.  (Photo by Julie Babcock)

Such achievements are not unusual for Babcock, an associate professor of art and design at UCM. On Oct. 19, 2013, he claimed the Guinness World Record for the longest scarf knitted while running a marathon. This achievement also took place in Kansas City, with Babcock completing the run in five hours, 48 minutes and 27 seconds, and with a scarf he garter stitched along the route that measured 12 feet, 3/4 of an inch.

When he runs this weekend, Babcock hopes to keep up a 10-minute-mile pace that will enable him to crochet a yarn mat about one yard in diameter by the time he finishes the run.  He estimates his finish time to be about four hours and 20 minutes, which also provides plenty of time to grab spectator attention for an important cause.

“Most people think of a grandma sitting comfortably at home when they think of crochet doilies. I want to do something very out-of-place and visibly fun for this marathon,” Babcock said. “I hope that when people see me running the marathon with a big lacy doily they will remember how awful Alzheimer’s disease is and they can do something to help.”

An avid runner, in a couple of weeks Babcock will be taking his knitting to the streets once again, but this time for a much larger audience. He will participate in the New York Marathon. Instead of knitting a scarf or doily, he will be finger-crocheting flowers to give to spectators along the route hoping to generate more attention and funding to support Alzheimer’s caregivers and research.

Learn more about Babcock and the unique way he has chosen to join in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease by visiting his website,