Nearly 1,000 runners signed up for Snickers marathon

2010 Snickers Marathon

2010 Snickers Marathon

ALBANY -- With time winding down before one of the biggest weekends of the year, Snickers Energy Bar Marathon organizers say they've already had nearly 1,000 runners sign up for the March 3 event.

The marathon is one component of a weekend full of events that typically bring thousands downtown. The Snickers Marathon, the SB&T Bike Race and the Mardi Gras Street festival has been named one of the state's top tourism draws for March, and organizers hope to keep it growing.

Rashelle Beasley, director of the Albany Convention and Visitors Bureau, says that 930 runners have signed up online to participate in either the full or half marathon and that the event is trending above where they were last year.

"Right now we're better than 10 percent above where we were last year and are on track to finish with more than 2,000 runners," Beasley said. "So we're hoping it'll be another big year."

To pull off a race of this magnitude, Beasley says the event needs an army of volunteers to help at water stations or serve as "road marshals," to help keep cars from coming through unexpectedly at intersections and hurting someone.

Those volunteers are needed, she says.

"We could always use more volunteers," Beasley said. "This event wouldn't function without volunteers and we could use more to serve as road marshals or water attendants or even to help at the start/finish."

The Snickers Half-Marathon is a Boston Marathon-qualifying race, which attracts people from around the globe to Albany.

To sign up to run or volunteer, go to visitalbany.com