Organizers say 7500 runners could take part in the half marathon.
Participants will be lacing up their running shoes next month, as the 11th Annual Frederick Running Festival takes place. The event will be held on May 4th and 5th at the Frederick Fairgrounds.
About 7500 people are expected to take part in the half marathon, which begins at 7:00 AM on Sunday, May 5th on East Patrick Street in front of the Fairgrounds. "We'll probably have in the neighborhood of 35 states represented, and we'll probably even have a number of international runners who are going to take a weekend up in Frederick," says Lee Corrigan, President, Corrigan Sports Enterprises, which is putting on the event.
Prior to the Running Festival, there's a lot of preparations being made between the event organizers, city officials, the Police Department and the Neighborhood Advisory Councils. "We make an effort to try to get out and coordinate our efforts and our schedule with churches, of course, and make sure the neighborhood associations are aware where we're coming through and when we're coming through," Corrigan says. "That formula has worked pretty well. Everybody seems to really have embraced the event, and expect it every year."
He also says people planning to go to church that Sunday will have no problems getting to their houses of worship in downtown Frederick in time for services. A few years ago, pastors at downtown churches were complaining that the road closures on Sunday morning when the race was being held were making it difficult for the faithful to attend services.
The 13-mile, half marathon route takes runners through the downtown, Baker Park, past Frederick Memorial Hospital, into the northern part of the city, down East Street to Highland Street, with the finish line inside of the Fairgrounds.
"Great economic impact for Frederick City and Frederick County. Probably in the neighborhood of $3.5-million in economic impact this year," Corrigan says.
The Running Festival will benefit a number of charities, says Corrigan, including the Frederick Rescue Mission, Special Olympics for Western Maryland, and other non-profits whose volunteers help out on the day of the race.