Rock ‘n’ Roll USA Marathon Road Closure Reminder for Saturday


From an email:

“This is a friendly reminder that the Rock ‘n’ Roll USA Marathon & CareFirst Rock ‘n’ Roll USA Half Marathon is coming up on Saturday, March 15, 2014.  Informational door hangers were distributed to residents, businesses and organizations along the route this last week and course signs have been placed on the designated course streets.

Visit our website to view an interactive course map and download PDF versions of the course map and road closure times.  If you are affiliated with a community group or business along the route, please share this information with your members and/or employees.

64 Comment

  • Oh great. Everyone has to be inconvenienced because a bunch of Type As in dayglo running gear need to attach another “26.2” sticker to their SUV.

    • I think “inconvenienced” is the operative word here. Ain’t the end of the world, and there is plenty of time to plan.

    • First post and…typical gripe.
      Come cheer folks on, have fun, go car free and enjoy the day.
      Always inspired running races or cheering folks on. Seeing cancer survivors, amputees, elderly, or those running in memory put life in perspective.

      • I’m usually very supportive of the races that happen around here, but this one seems to shut down roads across a huge part of the city. Plus, this one is just a for profit run and isn’t tied to any philanthropic organization. And, unfortunately for me (which is just poor timing on my part), I have to get somewhere on Saturday that isn’t accessible by metro, which means likely driving north to MD to get south to VA (which as someone who usually walks/takes transit, really irritates me – and happened to me last year on this run day, too). But, I’ll take it as a price of living in DC.

        • Maybe you should run in the race instead! Take all that anger out on the streets!

          • Did you not read or understand that post? Or you just a jolly dimwit?

          • I’m sorry, but where did you get anger from what I posted, exactly? I’m a little irritated, but like I said “I’ll take it as a price of living in DC.” I think you need your anger meter adjusted.

            Thanks Jeslett for the idea of parking my car outside the boundary. I hadn’t thought of that and I think that’ll work really well for what I need to do on Saturday.

        • I’ve run this race before and I love the course. Most runs in DC are A. barely in DC and B. only take you on a brief tour of the mall. Rock n Roll races draw huge crowds from all over the country and I love that the course shows off great parts of the city that are not the mall and are not Virginia. It’s one day in 365 days.

          I didn’t run it last year and I had a great time cheering on runners. But if that’s not your thing, park your car outside the perimeter the night before and walk to it Saturday morning. You can cross the course on foot.

          • I agree. I love the course too; I ran it in 2011 and 2012. What I didn’t like about it in 2012 was that they hooked up as part of the Rock N Roll circuit that year, and it was SO much more crowded than it had been the previous year. I haven’t run it since and won’t this year, but I’ll still head out to watch. It’s only a few hours, early on a Saturday morning! There are much bigger things to worry about.

        • Your facts are incorrect. There are a TON of charities supported by this race. You’d probably also be surprised to learn that races designated for specific causes earn very little money for those causes, as most of the race fees are spent covering what it costs to put on a race.

          • Some people may be running for their personal charities, but that doesn’t change the fact that Rock ‘n’ Roll is a for-profit company closing public roads and keeping all the profits from registrations of runners using those public roads.

          • “There are a TON of charities supported by this race.” Supported how? I’ve been skimming through the charity application form at (linked from the page, and so far all I can see is that they get some degree of publicity and they get to insert a flyer or whatever in the official goodie bag “at cost” (1.75 cents per insert).

          • Runners who race with a charity program raise funds for that specific charity. Those funds do not go to CGI (minus the registration fees). Also, this race brings in people from around the country, raises revenues for the city, brings publicity to the city, etc., etc. So regardless of whether the CGI is a for-profit entity, DC itself benefits from holding the race here. Sorry if you are inconvenienced, but as a resident of this city, you should support this race.

      • hispanicandproud

        andy2 nailed it! Why complain when you can go cheer and have fun?

    • LOL. You don’t really know any runners, do you?

    • Agreed with Eckington Chick. It’s especially irksome as this one is run by a for-profit company.
      They’re at least doing a better job of putting up signage this year, I’ll give them that much.

      • justinbc

        What the hell does it matter that it’s a for-profit company running the race?

        • Public roads shouldn’t be closed for for-profit events — same goes for for-profit festivals, etc. I don’t have as much of a problem with roads being closed for charitable events or publicly organized festivals, but no one should be able to profit by closing public roads.

          • justinbc

            What if it’s a completely ridiculous charity, like “Red Crayons for Kids Who Hate Green”? Would it be acceptable then, still? Or only if it happens to be a charity that you specifically support?

          • To Justin below — I don’t care if I agree with the charity, but it should be a registered IRS tax-exempt non-profit. If it’s something not registered (like “Bob’s fun run for a new car”) then no, they shouldn’t get to close public resources for their personal gain.

    • +1000 Boom this chick ^

      • ok this was meant for the 1st post….I agree. This one is not for charity and it circles the whole city? Looking at the map it will be impossible for me to drive out unless i want to go from Adams Morgan to the crossing section. Why the hell do you have to have it in a circle around the entire city!

      • Do you typically drive at 7:30 AM – 10:30 AM on Saturdays?

        • I do. Maybe not at 7:30, but 9 onwards? Sure.

        • It’s called running errands. unfortunately I don’t have flex time or option to work from home so I’m chained to my desk 8:30-6:30 daily. Saturday is when I use my car to do everything I can’t do during the week.

    • I love you! F the A types!

    • saf

      Agreed with the first post. This blocks up a TON of the city, making it a major PITA to get anywhere.

    • Just because something raises money for charity does not legitimize the entity. For example, Hammas in Lebanon raises money for charities as does the Taliban but that hardly gives them a free pass to blow up people. And yes, I do think there’s a moral equivalent between terrorists and organizers of a marathon – they both mess up people’s lives.

  • You know what would be a helpful? An actual map of the road closures.

  • rockcreekrunner

    Good luck to everyone running! Have fun out there. It looks like the weather will be perfect.

  • justinbc

    We spotted the signs all over this week, glad they posted them as we are planning to have folks over that Saturday. Looks like the race runs directly in front of our house this year, so if you’re running we’ll likely be out on our swing cheering you on.

  • This is the company that says they clean up after the runners who through their crap all over my neighborhood, and then doesn’t actually clean the course. Grumble grumble.

  • It’s a for profit company closing a noose around our neighborhood. It doesn’t matter who thinks runners are good or bad. Or driving is good or bad. It isn’t up to you to decide whether someone should be trapped at any time of the morning – for any reason. Mom’s 9 a.m. dialysis? Getting a sick dog to the vet?

    Marathons are great for those who like them – but why not run on the closed roads of Rock Creek park? Or around the mall? Or on the C & O towpath? Or around some suburban roads? This is Putin and the Crimea.

    • Complain to the city then. They’re the ones who issued all the permits, no? In particular, I urge you to use that last sentence when you do, just so they know that they should take you seriously.

  • It’s less disruptive than Rolling Thunder, that’s all I know.

    • Rolling Thunder is all around the mall – and Memorial Bridge. There are other bridges for escape. This traps a large neighborhood in the middle of the city and disrupts traffic for miles around in every direction.

  • It’s one day. Other DC races are more geared along the Potomac so this race offers a more scenic route for those putting in hard work and paying lots of money to compete. Plan your commute and get over it.

  • This happens one day a year and yet people act like this happens every weekend. People do raise money for charities in these races to avoid paying the fees. I ran this in 2012 and it was fun, but I won’t do it again because I like to run different half marathons every year. It is good to see people get out there and exercise. Some of you might want to try it and get rid of that pent up anger you seem to be exhibiting.

    • If anyone wants to go out and run 26 miles on any day no one will stop you. This is not about exercise or health or even personal challenge/accomplishment. Orchestrated marathons are about group validation, community, feeling part of something etc. – all totally valid and good for you! The overlay of charity has always struck me as shallow and cheesy – but again – no one is forcing anyone to contribute.

      But this marathon does force people who have not chosen to participate in your activity to be trapped.

    • One day a year? This is far from the only major foot race in DC.

      • This is the only race in DC that goes in a circle around the city. Others primarily stay around Haines Point and the monuments.

  • My main complaint is that there was no planning into rerouting traffic. Last year, they blocked the primary east/west routes through Columbia Heights with no signage, no detour and from what I saw no one redirecting. Too many people drove into it unaware and then got trapped in one-way traffic or narrow side streets like Monroe. There was no way to go forward or back and every intersection was gridlocked. Tempers were pretty hot with lots of horns, shouting and drivers bumping other cars.
    If they’re going to shut down major streets, then a plan for redirecting traffic should be a requirement.

  • I love how everyone is up in arms about being inconvenienced for a few hours on a Sunday. First of all, it is the only race that really goes through the district, and it is a very enjoyable course. If the course only went around the Mall or up Rock Creek Park, it would not really represent DC. The Marine Corp Marathon really just hubs the Potomac, and I feel it is more of an Arlington race. Second of all, you all live in major city! Every city of comparable size has a marathon.

  • I think this marathon has the worst possible route, I tried to move one year on the same day as this race and it was a total nightmare all day, well past the hours of the race. Why on earth does it need to go in a circle and completely cut off the mid city area for the rest of the city? I’ve never understood why marathons disrupt cities like this… and no, it’s not just “one sunday out of the year” and I don’t need to “get over it” … it’s completely pointless to use this route. You’re snarling traffic in the nation’s capital for no reason, don’t act like traffic is light on sundays around here…. and what if there was an emergency requiring people to evacuate downtown?

  • Ugh. Thanks, Obama.

  • This is hilarious. When I searched for this post I accidentally when to last year’s first. The comments were EXACTLY the same. Complaining about street closure, rebuttal, complaint about non-charity, etc…I’m getting some deja vu.

  • Can pedestrians cross closed streets if there is a break in the runners – or do we also need to cross at one of the designated “bump” intersections, where cars can cross the closed roads?

  • This course isn’t nearly as bad as the one 2 years ago.

    My only major gripe is that the course turns off of H st. NE on to K st. NE. If it just stayed on H, then people would be able to get from the hill to points north via 2nd. st NE, but the current layout leaves these people sort of boxed in.

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