October 17, 2014
The Marine Corps Marathon, also known as the “People’s Marathon” is 9 days away! As a DC runner and spectator I thought I would share Five Cheering Spots for Marine Corp Marathon Spectators (mirrors several of the suggestions from the MCM site).
1. Lincoln Memorial Steps
Several DC races take runners past the Lincoln Memorial (runners see the backside of the monument as they cross over the Memorial Bridge and head towards the Kennedy Center/Rock Creek Parkway). When I am running I love seeing spectators at this point – plus the steps make great seats. Note – there is no direct metro stop, you will need to walk.
2. Hains Point
Hains Point is a baby peninsula off the Tidal Basin. Most people do not enjoy this portion of the course – it is quiet and there is not much crowd support (I think I am in the minority by saying I like running there). If you have time, make your way over here to cheer on the runners. Note – there is no direct metro stop and Hains Point is almost 3 miles long.
3. The National Mall
The National Mall is home to DC monuments, Smithsonian Museums, and is bookend by the Capitol Building and the Lincoln Memorial. My cheering spot is right after Mile 17 (runners past the Washington Monument) around 12th Street. At that point they go up a little incline. After I spot my runners, I cut through the mall and wait for them by Mile 19 it is time to “Beat the Bridge.” This spot is close to the Smithsonian Metro Stop.
4. Crystal City
By the time runners enter Crystal City they have run over 20 Miles! There are loads of people here, music is blasting, and there is a sense of excitement as they near the finish. I usually stand by Mile 23 so I have a chance to see runners before they make a u-turn on the course (so I get to see the twice or once if I missed them the first time). This is very close to the Metro and there are plenty of resturants and shops nearby.
5. The Finish
Pretty inspiring! It may be crowded, but the crowd support is great as runners climb up the last .2 miles to the Finish Lines. This spot is close to the Metro.
Hope this post helps with building your spectator plan! Due to timing and logistics it is highly unlikely to make it to all five of these spots – you will have to pick and choose (also wear comfy shoes). Good luck to both runners and spectators!!
Do you have a favorite cheering spot along the MCM course?
Will you be watching a race (MCM or other) soon?