By JOE LoTEMPLIO
---- — PLATTSBURGH — More than 1,000 runners and walkers will swarm the streets of the City of Plattsburgh in Sunday’s Biggest Loser Run/Walk.
“We’ve got people from all across the country,” City Recreation Director Steve Peters said. “We have runners from Texas, Oklahoma, Hawaii, North Carolina — you name it. The power of the national brand of ‘The Biggest Loser’ is drawing people from all over the place to come here, and that is great for the city.”
The event features two main races: a 5-kilometer run and a half-marathon of 13.1 miles along city streets. There will also be a 1-mile fun run for kids.
The race, which is designed to promote fitness and wellness, is one of many held across the country stemming from the hit NBC television show “The Biggest Loser.” The show features contestants competing to lose the most weight.
The 5K race will start from Trinity Park downtown at 8 a.m., and the half-marathon will shove off about 10 minutes later. The kids’ fun run will start at 11:30 a.m.
The event has drawn about 1,200 participants so far, Peters said, with some still registering.
About 60 percent will take part in the 5K, with the rest running in the longer half-marathon.
“About 700 are from this region, about 100 from Vermont and another 100 from Ontario and Quebec and the rest from all over the country,” Peters said.
Jackie Evans and her son, Dan Evans, are the national spokespeople for the event, and they will participate in Sunday’s race. They both competed in the fifth season of “The Biggest Loser” show in 2010.
Jackie lost 89 pounds, and Dan dropped 136 pounds. Both mother and son have been running in half-marathons since then to keep fit.
“We got addicted to them,” Jackie said at a news conference in Plattsburgh in March to promote the event.
The half-marathon course will be different than the route used for the annual City of Plattsburgh Half Marathon and Relay in April.
Sunday’s race will stretch from Trinity Park north onto Cumberland Avenue then back down to the Terry Gordon Bike Path, then to the west side of the U.S. Oval and back to downtown. The loop will be run twice.
The course will take runners through areas of the city that buffer Lake Champlain and the Saranac River, which Peters said will provide them with great vistas and limit interference with traffic.
“We are only affecting about 110 residences, and we’ve sent letters to all of them notifying them of the event,” he said.
“The main roads of Routes 3, 9 and 22 and Broad and Rugar streets will remain open, as we are trying to have a minimal impact on the non-running residents of the city.”
The finish line will be on City Hall Place in front of City Hall.
Parking for the race will be in the city lot on Dock Street near Plattsburgh Landing, the Durkee Street parking lot and the Clinton County Government Center.
The event will kick off Saturday with a meet-and-greet party in Trinity Park, with vendors and live music starting around noon.
City Hall Place from Bridge Street to City Hall will be closed off all day Saturday beginning at 7 a.m.
On race day, Cumberland Avenue and Point View Terrace will be closed from 8 to 10:30 a.m. Residents are asked to park their cars on Lorraine Street or Durand Avenue prior to 8 a.m. that day if they need to depart between those hours.
Also, Bridge and Jay streets will be closed between 8 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. on race day. Residents are asked to park on Macomb, Macdonough, Pike or Peru streets or the Durkee Street lot prior to 8 a.m. for easy egress.
Club Road and the U.S. Oval will also be closed from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on race day. Residents are asked park their vehicles on Fort Brown Drive prior to street closing.
The race has about 110 volunteers so far, Peters said, and more are needed.
“This will be a big undertaking, and we want to keep the runners and residents safe,” he said.
Find information on signing on as a volunteer at the race website: BiggestLoser.com/RunWalk.
Email Joe LoTemplio:firstname.lastname@example.org