If you aren’t running in the Austin Marathon this weekend, it’s not too late to get involved. In fact, it’s a great opportunity to get those noisy kids out of the house, armed with even more noise makers, to cheer on the runners who have trained so hard for this milestone event.
The marathon will take place on Sunday, February 14, 2016 with a 7 a.m. start time. For those of you who are late risers but still want in on the cheering action, there are plenty of places along the route that you can go through mid-afternoon.
If you have a loved run running in the race, be sure to download this handy Runner Tracking app that will allow you to track their progress so that you can be in the right place at the right time. If you don’t have a loved one running, it’s still fun to cheer the runners on, especially as they hit the “wall”! I can’t even imagine running 26.2 miles.
Tips for Cheering with Kids
As a parent, you most likely already know that it’s best in any situation to come prepared. Here are some tips to help make the spectating the most fun for your family:
– Dress in layers. If you plan to head out in the early morning, it can be a bit chilly but will warm up quickly in the Texas sun. Forecast temps for Sunday are lows in the 40’s, highs in the 60’s.
– Pick a spot with a playground nearby. This can help with smaller kids who don’t have as much patience.
– It’s always a good idea to have some additional entertainment including favorite toys, phone, tablet, coloring books and crayons.
– For potty-training toddlers or kids who need to “go” frequently, pick a spot close to a location that will be kind enough to let you use their restroom.
– Tell the kids to give high fives to the runners along the way.
– Plan what to shout: “Way to go!” “You got this!” “Holy cow, you are amazeballs!” The kids can have fun thinking up some encouraging shouts.
What to Bring:
– Handmade signs
– Cow bells
– Air horn
– Folding chairs
– Snacks & water
2016 Spectator Spots
- South Congress Avenue, Miles 1-3
- South 1st Street, Miles 4-6
- Austin City Hall, Mile 6, Cesar Chavez and South First
- Pfluger Pedestrian Bridge, Mile 7 Over Cesar Chavez, just east of Lamar
- The (Really) Big One, Mile 12 (Half Marathon Course) at 15th and West Avenue
- The (Other) Big One, Mile 12 (Marathon Course) at Exposition & Westover
- Northern-most Point of the Course, Mile 17 at Rockwood and Anderson Lane
- Breaking Through the Wall, Mile 20 at Koenig and Woodrow
- The Home Stretch, Mile 24-25 at Duval, San Jacinto and the University of Texas
- The Finish, Mile 26 at 10th & Congress
Celebrate at the finish line (Congress Avenue, just south of the Capitol) with live music, trailer food and more at the end of the race. If you are meeting your runner at the finish line, it will be a bit chaotic so plan ahead to meet at a designated spot.
The Austin Marathon website has a great list of coffee shops close to each spectator spot for fueling up (and potty breaks).