The longest-ever kayak marathon race starts at six this morning in northern Minnesota, taking paddlers along eastern Iowa in a few weeks. The Great Mississippi River Race for Rett Syndrome will begin at Lake Itasca, Minnesota, and end in the Gulf of Mexico below New Orleans, Louisiana.Clark Eid, of Connecticut, is the race’s founder and he’ll be among the ten kayakers. There are five teams of racers, two racers per team, who will be paddling 24-hours a day for about a month. Eid expects to lose about ten-percent of his body weight by the time it’s all over.The kayakers should reach the northeastern tip of Iowa around May 16th and Eid expects there to be few problems with the flooding by that date. He’s been training for this 23-hundred-50 mile event for two years.Rett Syndrome is a rare and devastating genetic disease that affects one baby in every ten thousand births. Eid’s eight-year-old daughter has the disease. He says 100-percent of the money raised by the marathon will go toward research. Iowans can follow the trek’s progress at “www.dreamkeeper.org”.
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