The World Series Is Coming to DC This Weekend. Will That Affect the Marine Corps Marathon’s Race Route?

Probably not.

Photograph by mtngirl999 via Flickr Creative Commons.

It’s quite the time to be a Washingtonian. Not only are we existing in the epicenter of Impeachment Town, USA, but we also have two large displays of athletic prowess taking place within DC this weekend. Games three, four, and, if necessary, five of the World Series will be held October 25, October 26, and October 27, and the Marine Corps Marathon will take place October 27.

It’s a bit understandable if you forgot about the latter in the midst of the noise about the former, but it’s still a big deal. The Marine Corps Marathon is one of the biggest in the world, with folks participating either as a marathoner or a 50K or 10K runner. Obviously, it requires a ton of preparation and road closures to accommodate that kind of a crowd.

So how will the World Series affect the race?

If the Nats win on Friday and Saturday, that means they’re World Series champs. If last year’s Stanley Cup win is any indication, that means there will likely be some street partying going on into the early morning, aka when the marathon crew needs to shut roads down.

“If they win, obviously there’s going to be a celebration,” says Rick Nealis, MCM director. And if it’s an all-nighter, that could pose some issues for the marathon’s early street closures. “If the celebration went into the early hours, there’s probably just a couple speed bumps that we’ll have to get over.”

(But he wants to be clear: “That’s only if they win all four [games].”)

Thankfully, the roads by Nationals Stadium don’t directly overlap with the race route, marathon operations coordinator Mark Williams points out to me. But what if a few zealous fans wanted to host an impromptu parade along the National Mall post-World Series win?

While the Arlington roads by the start and finish lines of the race have to be shut down at 3 AM, the entirety of the course doesn’t have to be closed off until 6:30 AM, says Williams. So even if the celebrations make it all the way over to the monuments, it should trickle off in time.

(But, FYI: If you parked far away from the stadium, double check that you’re not along any of the race route roads. The crew will start towing early Sunday morning, says Williams.)

Plus, the folks running the race have it pretty much down to a science. “We’ve been meeting all summer long about the event,” says Williams. “MPD does this all the time with the Pope’s visit, inaugurations, etcetera.”

But, come on, I ask him, wouldn’t it make things a little easier for you all if the Nats just lost?

Williams pauses a long time, then laughs. “I hope they win.”

The Marine Corps Marathon events kick off at 7:30 AM on October 27. For race details and schedule, visit

Mimi Montgomery Washingtonian
Home & Features Editor

Mimi Montgomery joined Washingtonian in 2018. She’s written for The Washington Post, Garden & Gun, Outside Magazine, Washington City Paper, DCist, and PoPVille. Originally from North Carolina, she now lives in Del Ray.