Richard Ross is no stranger to running marathons. He's also no stranger to joggling (running while juggling) road races. But the Gloucester native has never combined the two together, that is until April 7 rolls around.
On that date Ross will be joggling his first marathon, when he will be one of 40,000 runners to take part in the Paris Marathon in Paris, France.
"I was hoping this would be the year I would joggle a marathon," Ross said. "I have joggled a bunch of races locally, mostly 5k or 10k races but never a marathon. It's going to be a good test."
Testing himself, however, isn't Ross' only motivation to participate in the Paris Marathon, not by a long shot.
The 27 year old Gloucester resident will be raising money through gofundme.com for The Association Taliberté Senegal, a non-profit group that is a center for Senegalese boys who are sent from their homes to study the Koran. The center is a place to go when they are not studying as an alternative to what they normally have to do, which is beg on the streets. The center provides the boys with physical activities and constructive leadership training, according to Ross.
"I have raised over $3,000 that will be used to continue the development of what we have in Senegal," Ross said. "It's just a center for boys where they can go in the afternoon to get off the streets."
Ross is currently in Senegal and will be there until May working with the The Association Taliberté Senegal. He first went to the West African nation after joining the Peace Corp in 2009. He spent two years working in Senegal as a part of the Peace Corp and a one-year extension in the country.
When in Gloucester, Ross runs an ice cream shop on Rocky Neck called "Kiss on the Neck Ice Cream" which is open from May to October. Ross made headlines at his ice cream shop in 2012 for selling re-usable grocery bags that were made in Senegal.