Church will collect, donate clothes from runners at Free Press marathon

- At the Fort Street Presbyterian Church downtown, preparations are getting ready for the Detroit Free Press/Chemical Bank marathon this Sunday.

"Here at the marathon we prepare a pasta dinner for the runners," John Glover, Director of Open Door.

And if you've ever run a long distance race, pasta is the dinner of choice.  And it's basically free, there's suggested a $15 donation. But that's not what's getting attention.

FOX 2: "When you start off at the Detroit Marathon some guy just called. And then as you start running you take those clothes off, and that's when you come in? "

"That's part of what we do, we have a great group of volunteers," Glover said. "They will be at the start of the marathon collecting all of the discarded clothing.  We sort through them, wash them, and put them out for our guests."

And depending on the weather, literally thousands of hats, coats gloves even sneakers are collected during the marathon.

Anyone can get the clothing just by going to the church on Thursdays.

The finish line is at Second and Fourth.

Next Sunday will be a bunch of activity. But if you like to get involved:


Packet pick-up and a Health & Fitness Expo will be at Cobo Center on October 13 and 14, so expect more traffic in that area.
Saturday, October 14 at 9:00 a.m. is the 5K along the riverfront. It starts at the DNR Outdoor Adventure Center and goes along the Riverfront. If you do a normal Saturday morning walk or run, be advised. Parking will be tight in that area as well. They're advising runners and visitors to park at the Chene Park lot.
Sunday, October 15 is the Marathon, International Half, and Half Marathon. The Marathon and International Half start at 7:00 a.m. The U.S.-only Half starts at 10:30 a.m.

The marathon events span from West Grand Boulevard in Southwest all the way to Burns in Indian Village. Routes run along Michigan Avenue, downtown, down Lafayette, and around Belle Isle. The Ambassador Bridge and the tunnel will also be part of the earlier international races.

Detroit Free Press Marathon
If you're looking for great places to cheer on the runners, Michigan Avenue in Corktown is always fun, Indian Village has tons of parties, and cheering along Lafayette and the Riverfront will help runners finish those last few miles.

Parking and Street Closures
Runners, spectators, and volunteers should park north of the race route. There should be parking in the arena district, the casinos, and just south of 75 in Corktown. The People Mover will start running at 5:00 a.m. on Sunday.

We'll have a full list of closures later this week. Expected closures this weekend include:
The Ambassador Bridge will have restricted traffic from the hours of 5:45 AM to 9:00 AM.
The Detroit-Windsor Tunnel will close between the hours of 6:45 AM to 10:00 AM.
The Lodge will begin to close around 3:00 AM at the I-75 Interchange.

It's been an unseasonably warm fall, and as of October 10, it looks like runners could have some relief this weekend. Saturday morning events could be in the 60s and cloudy, while it looks like Sunday's big race could be rainy and in the 50s. Prepare for precipitation if you're running, cheering, or volunteering that day.

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