Crowd support is huge, but being a good spectator takes preparation and work. If you’re planning on watching on race day, follow these tips can be an asset.
The IMT Des Moines Marathon has posted our Return to Race Guidelines that we All must follow in Des Moines. Read more.
Many of the roads surrounding the IMT Des Moines Marathon route will be closed on race day. Road closures and traffic re-routes will be posted closer to the event.
Know When to Watch
MercyOne 5-Mile Run
It starts at 8 am at Principal Park on Saturday, October 16.
Course highlights include the Meredith Trail, Gray’s Lake Park, and the Des Moines skyline’s great views from along the Raccoon River.
IMT Des Moines Marathon & Half Marathon
It starts at 8 am on Court Avenue on Sunday, October 17.
Finishers will begin to cross the finish line as early as 9:15 am in the IMT Des Moines Half Marathon, and 10:00 am in the IMT Des Moines Marathon. The bulk of the runners and some of the walkers are expected to finish before 1 pm. The course is open for seven (7) hours.
Bankers Trust Marathon Relay
It starts at 8 am on Court Avenue on Sunday, October 17.
This is a fun race to watch as the 1st team member completes the first 4 miles of the marathon course, the 2nd member the next 6 miles, the 3rd member completes 4 miles, followed by the 4th member the team who completes 6 miles. The last member of the team completes the final 6 miles of the race, with all team members joining together for the final .2 miles. Look for Bankers Trust Maraton Relay teams to cross the finish line at various times throughout the day.
5K Road Race
It starts at 8:30 am on Court Avenue.
The first athletes return to cross the finish line as early as 8:45 a.m. Most athletes complete the race by 9:15 am.
Know Where to Watch
It is a great location to watch all of the events on Saturday and the first miles and final mile of their races on Sunday… where support is needed most!
Home of the Drake Relays and the blue oval. Marathon route at Mile 12. Drake Stadium is open to spectators. Great place to see the athletes on campus stoic with running history.
Water Works Park
Solace and green space in the middle of the city. The best way to arrive at Water Works Park is via 63rd Street, to Park Avenue, to Valley Drive/George Flagg Parkway or Thomas Beck Road, to SW 30th, to Water Works Park. Plenty of parking is available just outside the entrance to the park at SW 30th.
Gray’s Lake Park
A true gem in Des Moines. Park in the southwestern parking lot of Gray’s Lake Park, accessible from Fleur Drive and George Flagg Parkway, or Thomas Beck Road.
W MLK JR PKWY (between 11th Street and 3rd Street)
Stunning views of the downtown skyline. A long straight away before the end of the race.
Know What to Look For
Athletes must have their race number/bib visible at all times. Typically race numbers/bibs 1 through 100 are reserved for professional & elite athlete status.
MercyOne 5-Mile Run race number/bib colors are purple, and mile markers are purple.
IMT Des Moines Marathon race number/bib colors are orange, and mile markers are orange.
IMT Des Moines Half Marathon race number/bib colors are light blue, and mile markers are light blue.
Bankers Trust Marathon Relay race number/bib colors are orange, and transition areas are orange.
5K Road Race race number/bib colors are green, and mile markers are green.
IMT Des Moines Marathon Marathon Maniac & Half Fanatics Pace Team leaders wear safety yellow singlets in the Marathon & Half Marathon divisions with associated green race numbers/bibs.
IMT DMM App
With IMT DMM LiveTracking, your friends and family can follow your progress live during the race by simply searching for their race number/bib or name by clicking here. You can then choose to post live updates to your Facebook or Twitter account with their progress. You will then be asked to log into your social media account and authorize the app to allow it to post live updates on your timeline/feed. Social Sharing.
In the new app, you can find all the information you like to know about the IMT DMM: course maps, updates via social media, LiveTracking, and more. You don’t need to bring your phone on the course to activate LiveTracking, as the IMT DMM app uses the passing of the timing mats to calculate your average speed.
Know the Course
Get acquainted with the racecourses. Athletes will spend time with the course map to become more familiar with the race. It helps them to know what is ahead of them, such as elevation changes, busy intersections, narrow trail sections, and areas of the course where more than one race shares the road.
Don’t park your vehicle on the course, or you risk being towed. The emergency No Parking signs you see posted are for the comfort and safety of the athletes. Please respect them. The course map does detail spectator travel routes.
Don’t drive your vehicle on the course. It could become a hazard to an athlete and may ‘spook’ some of them as vehicles drive upon them. Besides…the Des Moines Police Department will remove you and your vehicle from the course.
Bring a blanket, lawn chair, and/or picnic. You are welcome to pick a spot on the course to watch the athletes pass by or pick a few spots to watch. Wherever you chose to root on the athletes, let them know you are there. Cheer with enthusiasm. Clap your hands. Bring noisemakers. Make signs. Offer encouragement. Whatever you do, have fun and be loud!
Ask for additional suggestions and tips from IMT DMM Ambassadors at the DMOS Orthopaedic Sports & Fitness Expo and around Court Avenue on race day.
Here are eleven tips designed to ensure you are a supportive spectator on race day. Click here.