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Welcome to Irish Fest: In cooperation with the Irish American Society of County Will, the Prairie State Road Runners proudly presents the 8th annual Manhattan Irish Fest Parade 5k. This unique race starts a parade, runs along the parade route, and is included with festival activities. After competing on a fast and flat road race course, runners get admission to the main tent for awards, food and beverages. This is the 26th annual Manhattan Irish Fest, a two day celebration of Irish culture!
Pre-registration: The first 250 pre-registered runners are guaranteed to receive an official Manhattan Irish Fest Parade 5K gender specific, dry-fit long sleeve shirt. All runners will receive a commemorative Irish Fest button, included with the price of registration. This button must be worn in order to gain entry to the main tent for the post-race party. Extra buttons can be purchased during pre-registration for $10. Buttons will be available at race day registration, but for $15. The buttons are good for the entire weekend.
Parking: Because of the parade, parking in town is very limited. We strongly advise all race participants to park at the Metra station at 15601 W. Sweedler, and take the buses that will be provided. Bus service begins from the Metra Station at 9:00am. The last bus leaving the Metra Station for the start line is 10:00am. The race forms at the intersection of North and Thelma streets, near St. Paul's United Methodist Church of Christ.
Race Day Registration and Packet Pickup: The Metra station is also the designated area for race day registration and packet pickup starting at 8:30am. Anyone who registers after 7PM Thursday (including pickup Friday and race day) will have their number automatically assigned, the next number in sequence. The participant will be presented this number and asked to bring proof of number assignment to pick up on Friday or race morning. Registration will close at 10:30am, with bus service from there to the starting line. (See below for early packet pickup).
Early Packet Pickup: Friday, March 4 at Fitness Premier (540 W. North St, Manhattan) from 2pm-8pm. Though we strive for accuracy, please make sure you receive the correct amount of festival buttons before leaving. The buttons are good for admission to the festival on Friday night, so you may want to pick up your packet on Friday. Anyone who registers after 7PM Thursday (including pickup Friday and race day) will have their number automatically assigned, the next number in sequence. The participant will be presented this number and asked to bring proof of number assignment to pick up on Friday or race morning.
Shuttle Service: Shuttle bus service begins at 9:00am. The last bus is scheduled to leave Metra Station at 10:30. If you miss the bus, you will have but a one-mile warm-up run from the lot to the starting line. There will be no gear check, so please leave your extra things in your car. After the race, a bus at Anna McDonald school take you back to the Metra parking lot. The last bus from the finish area will be leaving for the Metra Station at 12:30pm.
The Race: The race is chip-timed. Overall winners will be judged on gun time. The course is certified (USATF #IL15029).
Post-race Party: Snacks and water will be available at the finish line, however participants will want to make their way to the main festival tent, where they will find hot sandwiches, beer, and other beverages for purchase. The post-race party is the on-stage entertainment in the main tent: live music, Irish dancing, and bagpipe bands! All race participants will receive coupons in their race packets, to redeem for a free beer or non-alcoholic beverage.
Awards: Overall male and female winners will receive trophies. Overall Master Male and Female (40 and over) will receive trophies. All other age groups will receive medals for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. Age groups are: 14 and Under; and 5-year age groups beginning with 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, etc. to 75 and over. All participants that are 14 and under will receive a participation award at the finish line.
Volunteers needed: Register as a volunteer and receive Irish Fest Admission Button and coupons. You don't even have to break a sweat!
Last day to register for guaranteed shirt in your desired size, is February 18th!
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