New Orleans Rock 'n' Roll Marathon
January 25, 2015
A race with something for everyone. That’s what the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon will be offering its participants when they line up in downtown New Orleans on the morning of January 25, 2015.
Not only is the event offering a full, 26 mile 385 yard (42.195 kilometer) Marathon course for its most durable runners, it is also offering, for the first time, a 10K course, along with a Half-Marathon and a 2-Person Half-Marathon Relay. Race organizers are confident that the additional options will attract more runners to an event that is already drawing thousands of participants from all over the world.
Formerly known as the Mardi Gras Marathon, this race is one of the most popular of the more than 800 marathons staged worldwide every year. Because of the city’s low-lying elevation, the course is almost uniformly flat, ranging from sea level to only 15 feet above sea level in its highest spots. Also, the weather in New Orleans at this time of year is usually conducive to running; cool and comfortable with low humidity.
And, as a bonus, runners are rewarded at the end of the run with a New Orleans-style street party in scenic, historic City Park, featuring live entertainment, food, drinks and fun (as well as basic first aid for those whose feet may need a little TLC after all that pavement pounding).
The 10K race starts at 7:00 a.m. in the heart of the city’s Central Business District, on St. Charles Avenue at Lafayette Square, one block from Poydras Street. Participants in the 10K will have a half-hour head start on the Marathon and Half-Marathon runners and a much shorter course that will take them through parts of the city’s Warehouse District, along the edge of the French Quarter and up the full length of Esplanade Avenue to City Park.
The full and half-course Marathons will take off at 7:30 a.m. from Camp and Poydras streets. The full Marathon participants will run along St. Charles Avenue to Audubon Park and back, then pass through the Warehouse District, downtown, along the edge of the French Quarter and up Esplanade to City Park.
The Half-Marathon and Half-Marathon Relay will eliminate most of the St. Charles Avenue route for its participants, and they will follow the rest of the route through downtown, the French Quarter and along Esplanade.
This year’s route will no longer go up Marconi Boulevard to Lake Pontchartrain and back to City Park.
Race participants will, along the course, be seeing such ground-level vistas as the storybook mansions on St. Charles Avenue, the historic architecture of the French Quarter, the elegant homes along Esplanade Avenue and the majestic old oaks of City Park. And, where the race ends at City Park, the party begins!
Coinciding with the Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Marathon is an educational and informative Fitness Expo at the Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Convention Center (more details below).
All along the course, at evenly spaced intervals, are fluid replacement stations where race participants can freshen up. Emergency medical units are also stationed along the route in case they are needed. Typifying the New Orleans spirit, bandstands are set up on the route and live music greets the ears of those racing past.
The race is open to runners in fifteen age categories ranging from 12-14 to 80+. Awards will be given out to the top three runners in each age category, as well as to the top three runners overall, male and female.
Participants must be able to complete the half marathon in four hours or the full marathon in seven hours. Please review the race guidelines and course map.
Health & Fitness Expo
A Health & Fitness Expo will be held in conjuction with the Rock n’ Roll Marathon at the Ernest N. Morial New Orleans Convention Center, Hall J, on January 23 and 24. Hours on Friday the 23rd are 12:00 noon to 6:00 p.m., and on the 24th from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission to the Expo is free and open to the public.
Before the race all runners MUST report to the Expo to pick up their race numbers, timing tags, Brooks Technical Tees and goodie bags. Each participant must pick up his or her own materials only. Race packets will not be given to friends or family members. All participants must have with them a photo ID, along with the printed and signed confirmation sheet, which will be sent via email approximately one week before the race.
Offered among the more than 60 vendor exhibits will be free samples of running and fitness products, fitness seminars and health screenings, plus info on the latest running shoes, sports apparel and health & nutrition products.
The live entertainment lineup for the 2015 post-race party includes Trombone Shorty and The Kongos.
Those interested in participating in the race or just spectating and taking part in the blowout party after the race can get more information from the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon’s home page, Twitter or Facebook. The website’s home page also includes valuable training tips for runners and other marathon participants.