INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Months of preparation are wrapping up for Saturday morning’s OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon.
From the work of thousands of runners training for the race, to the preparation of organizers to get the course ready, it all steps off in the morning.
Roads started closing Friday evening around 6 p.m., and the Mini course will start closing around 7 a.m. Other road closures can be found here.
Friday is the day for set-up along the starting line and in Military Park, where the post party is held. There are 4,000 volunteers for the Mini Marathon alone.
“It’s an incredible undertaking,” said 500 Festival Event Director Eric Rowles.
The last day for runners and walkers to pick up their packets was Friday. Thousands came to the Convention Center for the Mini-Marathon expo. For everyone, there’s a different reason to run.
“It’s a mental challenge,” said April Bordeau. “It’s always fun, a lot of energy, the crowd is fun.”
“I’ve lost about 40 pounds in the last year. I like the fitness aspect, the camaraderie with other runners, and traveling, seeing other cities,” said Scott Heckel, of Ohio.
“I’m proving to my dad and my family that we have overcome this heart disease,” said Julie Manning. “My dad passed away two years ago, so my run is dedicated to my dad.”
In addition to the Mini Marathon, there are multiple other events or conventions here in Indianapolis this weekend, like the Pacers playoff game, a regional soccer tournament, and multiple conventions, including one for knitting, one for iron and steel, and one for wires and cables.
Visit Indy expects more than 60,000 people around Indianapolis, generating $30 million in economic impact.
The Old Spaghetti Factory Friday evening was packed. Their general manager said they will feed 1200-1300 people. “The Mini Marathon crowd is one of my favorite crowds we get all year,” said Paul Burgess, General Manager. “A lot of pasta tonight.”
If you are heading out Saturday, don’t forget about the road closures that come with the Mini Marathon. We’ve put a link to more information here.