Marathon boosts Little Rock’s economy

Business
January 01 2022 12:00 am

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Little Rock Marathon concluded Sunday, and thousands of runners from around the world came for the event. Local businesses got a boost from an influx of money during the weekend.

Jack Sundell owns Mockingbird Bar & Tacos and the Root Cafe in Little Rock. These two spots were beneficiaries of the visitors.

“We’ve seen lots and lots of Little Rock Marathons,” Sundell, who first opened the Root Cafe 10 years ago, said. “It’s always a busy time. Generally, there’s a street closure on Main Street, but lots and lots of out-of-towners are in Little Rock.”

Brandy Dixon is the marathon’s assistant director. She said organizers make it a point to look out for local businesses.

“We reached out to all of our local businesses because we really wanted to support our community and to showcase what great businesses we have,” Dixon said.

When the 2022 marathon happens in March, Dixon said many of these runners will be back again. They spend around $6 million locally each time they’re here, according to marathon statistics.

“Hopefully, they’ll come back and run the race again,” Dixon said. “It just shows them what a great city we really are.”

Sundell said the marathon allows Little Rock to cross the finish line on top.

“You’ve got probably 10,000 extra people in Little Rock for a weekend,” Sundell said. “They’re going to find places to eat. It’s going to make all those restaurants busier.”

People can sign up for a spot in the 2022 marathon now.

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