People expect a fun and fast race when they register for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Crescent City Classic.
For the 38th edition of the race, which is scheduled for March 26, they also can expect some changes designed to enhance the overall event experience.
The biggest change in 2016 will be to the post-race festival, which will be moved from the practice track area just off Roosevelt Mall in New Orleans City Park, to the park’s festival grounds located closer to Wisner Boulevard. That move further required slight alterations to the start and finish lines, as well as a couple of minor changes to the course.
“The post-race party really outgrew the footprint of the practice track, so we had to move it,” CCC race director Eric Stuart said. “I liked the aesthetic of finishing on Roosevelt Mall with the tree-lined avenue, but it would have been a half-mile walk from there to the party on the festival grounds. So we knew we had to move the finish closer to the festival grounds. Now, it’s going to finish right by NOMA (the New Orleans Museum of Art.)”
That change means the starting line will be moved about 200 feet closer to Claiborne Avenue (roughly Poydras and Lasalle streets) from last year’s starting point at the corner of Poydras and Loyola Avenue. The course will lead participants toward the river on Poydras, and they will turn left onto Convention Center Boulevard behind Harrah’s Casino, then will run up Canal Street to North Peters Street.
From there, they will follow the normal route into the French Quarter, along Decatur Street and Esplanade Avenue, all the way to City Park Avenue. Runners will enter the park at Anseman Street and take an immediate left on Dreyfous Street and loop around to Victory Avenue, before ending on Lelong Drive in front of NOMA.
Stuart said the alterations will make the CCC experience even better.
“All the feedback we receive is that the allure of running in New Orleans is huge,” he said. “Our course has a lot to do with that. It’s flat, it’s tree-lined, it’s scenic. The really good runners appreciate that, and all that remains the same.”
More than 25,000 people are expected to take part in this year’s Crescent City Classic, which will begin at 8 a.m. The 10-kilometer (6.2-mile race) is followed immediately by the Michelob Ultra post-race party in City Park. Also, the two-day Health & Fitness Expo will be held March 24-25 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, located at 601 Loyola Ave. The expo features dozens of vendors, speakers, presentations and much more, and is free and open to the public.
For information on race registration, the expo, and more, go online to www.ccc10k.com.