From near and far – 11 countries, 47 states and counting – runners and those who just enjoy a good time will gather downtown Jan. 18-20 for The Louisiana Marathon Weekend.
There will be a festival atmosphere with lots of food and music. And, of course, there will be running. Lots of running.
On Sunday, in addition to the 26.2-mile marathon, which organizers hope will field about 1,300 runners, there’s the 13.1-mile half marathon presented by Michelob Ultra, where more than 2,300 runners are expected to compete. The long races will traverse the city, and local residents are urged to come out and cheer on the runners.
In The Advocate Kids Marathon and The Advocate Cypress 5K, both taking place on Saturday, hopes are about 1,000 will take part in each event.
But The Louisiana Marathon is much more than just running events. It is also an avenue for charities to raise awareness and funds for their respective causes. There’s a two-day health and fitness expo, with more than 50 exhibitors. And, there’s festivals on both Saturday and Sunday and a wrap-up party Sunday night that might even get the tested runners back on their feet.
The Louisiana Marathon is the brainchild of Craig Sweeney, Danny Bourgeois and Patrick Fellows. All told, they have more than 60 years of event management, sales and marketing experience and have been managing endurance events on the Gulf Coast since 2005.
“Our mission (with the Marathon Weekend) is to celebrate running as much as we enjoy good food and great music, best framed within our mantra: Run + Eat + Dance + Laugh,” the organizers say.