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Christie Clinic Illinois 5k has new route, some new runners

Jun. 5—CHAMPAIGN — The Christie Clinic Illinois 5K, originally scheduled for April 26, is back on this Friday with a new route and room for around 200 more runners.

Around 4,000 were signed up to participate on the April date, approximately 500 of whom took the option to defer until next year and approximately 300 of whom plan to participate virtually.

Race coordinators opted to allow 500 more runners to sign up.

"With a couple days to go, we have 300 brand-new 5K participants who, for whatever reason, weren't originally registered for the 5K," said race director Jan Seeley.

The new route, which is available on the Illinois Marathon website, will mean that Kirby is closed between Fourth and First Streets starting at 5 p.m. on Friday.

Runners will still cross the finish line near Memorial Stadium and be greeted with medals and a celebration including live music from local band PBS, drinks in the Riggs beer garden and plenty of food.

Seeley doesn't foresee any changes to next year's races, which are already scheduled for April 24-26, 2025.

The 2024 5K was canceled because police who would have been on duty providing security for the race were instead responding to a pro-Palestine protest at the University of Illinois.

"We went from having 30 officers lined up to zero in the matter of an hour," Seeley said. "Next year, things will go back to normal and hopefully we won't have an unprecedented situation like this."