H-SAN LUIS OBISPO

Apr 5, 2013 7:52 PM by Cameron Polom, KSBY News

This year's SLO marathon's economic impact set to out pace previous year

On Sunday, San Luis Obispo will be overrun with runners. Thousands will compete in the city's second annual marathon.

Organizers are expecting the economic boost to be even greater than last year.

They calculate for every one-thousand runners, it puts $1,000,000 into the SLO economy.

"This past week leading up to the race, we've noticed a little bit of an increase, some people coming in gearing up for the race," said Larry Ng of Running Warehouse.

Ng and his team were scrambling on Friday, fitting and diagnosing the feet that will hit the pavement this weekend.

According to Clint Pearce, President of Madonna Inn Enterprise, he's ready to see record breaking numbers.

"Last year, the economic impact of the marathon was over three million dollars," said Pearce. "This year, they've grown it to be quite a bit bigger than last year."

Pearce says he expects the community to see more than $4,000,000 trickle in at the finish line this year.

But the marathon isn't without its road blocks. Many businesses along the course route will have limited or no access for their customers. While some aren't happy about the situation, others are embracing the traffic of potential customers.

"We're really excited for the SLO marathon," said Britt Clyde of Baileyana Winery.

Clyde says instead of fighting the crowds, they're trying to draw them in with a slight change in hours. They are normally open from 10 to 5 but will change to 12 to 5 to accommodate for the race.

"We just decided to make it work," said Clyde, "We'd rather everyone at least have some chance to try and come and visit our winery as opposed to being closed the entire day."

It's all good news for the local businesses we spoke with Friday, especially hotels.
Some that we caught up with said they are so busy, they're already turning travelers away.

Close to 5,000 athletes will run this weekend between the 5K, the half-marathon and the full marathon.
Those runners will be coming in from all over the world, including Great Britain, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Hong Kong.

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