Saturday is the big day as thousands of runners will descend upon Jackson for the Blue Cross / Blue Shield Mississippi Blues Marathon and Half Marathon. We welcome participants from all over the world! The race will take them through Fondren and you can be a part of the experience. This document clearly outlines the route and gives you approximate times to catch runners in action. As well, there are a few reminders that will be helpful for Saturday morning:
*Be sure to park in you driveway and not on the street in the neighborhoods where the race will take place. Make sure curbs, gutters, and the street area in front of your home are clear of any lawn debris or trash.
*There will be aid stations for runners in the neighborhood at mile marker 3 of the marathon at St. James Episcopal, mile marker 3 of the half marathon at Wood Dale bridge (also mile marker 16 of the marathon when runners come back through Fondren) and mile marker 5 of the marathon at Meadowbrook Shopping Center.
*If you choose to cheer on the participants near Fondren Presbyterian, you will be treated to Blues Musicians – a trademark of the Mississippi Blues Marathon – playing from 7am-8am and then again from about 8:30am to 11:30am as runners return back to the Fondren area. Volunteers at these aid stations are from local businesses and have been trained on where to park and to leave the area cleaner than they found it.
*Course marshals will direct runners at every intersection on the course. These volunteers will have hand held stop signs to assist in directing vehicles.
*Please be aware of them and respectful of their requests. Drive cautiously when you see runners on the course. North State Street and Old Canton Road will have orange cones marking the runners’ lane, but there will be no cones on interiors neighborhood streets.
*Most importantly, cheer! Step out to the street and cheer the runners on, from the world class elite marathoners to those that may be running their first race. Your support means everything to us!
For more on the Mississippi Blues Marathon and Half Marathon, visit msbluesmarathon.com.
Update: we just learned from John Sewell, Blue Cross/Blue Shield Marketing Manager, that, according to us-marathon.pikimal.com, The Mississippi Blues Marathon and Half Marathon is ranked #9 in the top 10 U.S. marathons (out of 443) in terms of prize money. Top three are Disney ($1.3M purse), Boston ($1M) and New York ($800K). Prize money for the blues top finisher is twice that of ING Miami ($2000). The Blues is also ranked #21 on list of best U.S. marathons. And finally, the race is ranked #9 in top 10 races for best weather.