After months of training, it's time to cut loose. Here's where.
It's the 20th mile that kills a lot of marathoners, but the 27th comes with a free beer.
Saturday's Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon has an accompanying party with live music, kids' games, food and beverages.
The event is part of wide festivities starting at 8 a.m. just outside Memorial Stadium and near the University of Illinois Activities & Recreation Center.
It heats up as most runners complete the race by the early afternoon and the American Family Insurance 27th Mile Celebrate Victory Bash begins.
Cory Hatfield, the sports and sales director at the Champaign County Convention and Visitors Bureau, said marathon planners wanted something for everyone Saturday, whether you're running in the race or not.
"We want to show our hospitality," he said. "We want to show people from out of town what the area has to offer."
Hatfield said the marathon is already becoming a tourist draw, noting it has been named "top marathon to watch" by Runner's World magazine.
For the kids, there are inflatable games and the finest heirloom soda pop from the Homer Soda Company.
For the grownups, there's free Red Bull and a complimentary beer with their race number.
Miller Lite and Leinenkugel Summer Shandy are the free brews, also available for purchase after the race, Hatfield says.
Non-alcoholic beverages will be available as well for those under 21.
For the sweaty, there's a $5 day pass to the University of Illinois Activities & Recreation Center to shower before runners attend the after-party.
For everyone, there's live music from Champaign's the Decadents during the day.
Later, Ryan Ideus & The Feudin' Hillbillys play a free show starting at around 5 p.m. at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 500 S. Goodwin Ave., U.
Throughout the day, there's also food on the move. Champaign-Urbana's best food trucks, such as Cracked: The Egg Came First, Burrito King and the Empanadas House, serve it on the hoof, Hatfield said.