Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon means millions for city

6:59 PM, May 17, 2013   |    comments
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CLEVELAND -- With 18,000 runners pounding the pavement in Cleveland this weekend, there's bound to be big crowds on the city streets. The Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon brings in runners, race fans, volunteers and a lot of money for the city.

"Right now I'm in the middle of a million cupcakes, so come on down," says Courtney Bonning, owner of Bon Bon Pastry and Café.

It's not exactly the breakfast of champions, but Bonning is baking away, getting ready for hungry race watchers to pass by her bakery in Ohio City.

"We get a lot of walk ins," says Bonning, "There's a lot of people who are moving from point A to point B. We like to be really fast and courteous and -- absolutely -- if I had to use the restroom, I would be so mad if they didn't let me do it, so we're here for everyone."

Bon Bon is just one of the many downtown businesses ready to cater to every need of the more than 40,000 people in town.

Big crowds mean big money.

The Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon -- last year -- had an economic impact of over $18 million.

"Not to mention all the runners that come from out of town that spend time and money at our hotels, our restaurants, shop at our boutiques and all the things there are to do while they're in town," says April Ingle, with Positively Cleveland.

Marathon research found that 94 percent of the runners aren't local. And each runner brought an average of 2 people with them.

Positively Cleveland says the marathon also exposes people who live here to 26 miles of new development -- and neighborhoods they may not have seen.


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