Downtown streets will be filled with runners and spectators Sunday morning for the 19th annual Buffalo Marathon.
New this year is the Diaper Dash, a 26.2-foot crawl/walk for some of the race’s tiniest spectators. Sponsored by the John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital, the race is strictly for those athletes 2 years of age and younger.
There’s also a new text alert system for weather and traffic updates to keep runners notified of changing conditions on race day. To sign up, text 2019BuffaloMarathon to 33222.
The marathon is a four-day event this year, with yoga at the finish line on Franklin Street at 6 p.m. Friday kicking off the festivities and a Slow Roll at the Buffalo Naval Park on Memorial Day Monday to bring things to a close.
Here’s everything runners, spectators and those who want to avoid the crowds need to know about race weekend:
- Packets for the marathon can be picked up starting at 9 a.m. Saturday inside the convention center.
- The all-important pre-race pasta dinner ($20) presented by Chef’s is at the convention center from 4-6 p.m. Saturday
- Participants can begin lining up for the race in the corral at 5:45 a.m. Sunday morning.
- The race begins and ends near the convention center and will start at 6:30 a.m. sharp.
- There will be 110 portable toilets spread out through the course of the race.
- The 26.2-mile race course will remain open until 12:30 p.m.; the half marathon course will close at 10:30 a.m.
- The post-race party takes place on the second floor of the convention center, from 8:15 a.m. until 1:30 p.m.
- The best place to meet your runner is at the Official Family Reunion Area outside the convention center.
- Want to watch along the way? Your best bets include:
- Spot Coffee at the corner of Chippewa and Delaware — runners will pass here twice as the race starts and ends
- Gates Circle or near the intersection of Chapin Parkway and Delavan Street near Forest Lawn Cemetery
- Inside Delaware Park near Nottingham Terrace and Meadow Road
- Remember: Bicycles and pets are not permitted along the race route.
If you want to avoid the race:
- Roads will start to close early at 4:30 a.m. Sunday, with all roads reopened by 2 p.m. Downtown streets will remain closed the longest; streets near Delaware Park will reopen by 1:30 p.m.
- Avoid the area near the convention center starting Saturday night.