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Lace up your sneakers: Runners prepare for Louisiana Marathon weekend

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BATON ROUGE - The time has come for the 8th annual Louisiana Marathon. Runners from all over the world are expected to register and run in this year's races. But the marathon has become a full-fledged event with music and food as well. 

SATURDAY WEATHER UPDATE: The Louisiana Marathon 5K and Quarter Marathon were canceled early Saturday morning due to weather; The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Kids Mile at 10 a.m. The event was previously scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Start location is still corner of N. 3rd and North Street.   The Finish Festival for the day has been canceled.  But, The SHIPT Expo continues Saturday from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the Raising Cane's River Center as well as the Louisiana Street Food Festival from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. in front of the River Center near the pedestrian bridge. The bands scheduled for Saturday's Finish Fest will perform at the Street Food Festival. 

The Sunday events, The Louisiana Marathon and Half Marathon will still take place as planned.

"The Louisiana Marathon, like most events, has a no refund policy regarding weather cancellations. The money collected from registrations has already been spent to produce the event.  We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this many cause and look forward to seeing you at next year’s event," a spokesperson said in an email Saturday.

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Runners of the full, 26.2-mile marathon will race through downtown Baton Rouge before heading through the LSU campus, around the University Lakes into the garden district and back up to the Capitol. There are also courses for a half marathon, quarter marathon, 5k and a one-mile run for kids. 

Participants in the quarter marathon, 5k and kids marathon will run on Saturday morning. Those registered for the half and full marathon will run Sunday morning at 7 a.m. 

Before any of the runners get going, organizers have set up a Friday night of fun at the Raising Cane's River Center called the SHIPT Expo. The Michael Foster Project will do a second line and perform in front of the crowd starting at 5 p.m. Following the concert, guest speakers will share life stories about how food and eating habits have impacted their lives as a part of the "Meanwhile at Cafe Du Monde" show. 

Following the marathons, runners and guests can attend the Finish Festival showcasing an assortment of food including jambalaya and gumbo. 

Additionally, participants and VIP guests have the opportunity to meet the 2018 Boston Marathon Winner Des Linden. Linden will run in the half marathon in Baton Rouge as she prepares to defend her title in April. 

This year, runners are expected to come from all 50 states and 32 countries. 

Saturday:

8 a.m.- 5k and quarter marathon

10:30 a.m.- kid's marathon

Sunday:

7 a.m.- full marathon and half marathon

To register for a race, click here.

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