Running for the Green

Why wait until Monday to start your St. Patrick's Day partying, when you can join thousands of revelers decked out in their best Irish running gear for today's St. Malachi Run in the Flats? "The race is a traditional kickoff for the St. Patrick's celebration, so you'll see a lot of people in shamrocks, green outfits, and sparkling hats," says Katherine Gessner, spokeswoman for the 28th annual race. "There's an unspoken contest among racers on who has the most green on them while running or walking. So don't forget to dress up if you're joining the fun." Last year, nearly 2,000 athletes ran either a two- or five-mile course to raise money for St. Malachi Church, which is named after a 12th-century Irish bishop who could forecast the future. Afterward, the group retreated to the nearby McCarthy's Ale House for some post-race spirits. This year, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Daniel Gaul will cheer on the winners, since he's a member of one of the run's founding families. "It's a big mix, with moms and dads bringing their children for some exercise and a chance to be outside," says Gessner. "I love the energy of it all." The race starts at 7:30 this morning at St. Malachi Church, 2459 Washington Avenue on the West Bank of the Flats. Race fee is $25, but it's free to watch. Call 216-623-9933 or visit
Sat., March 15, 7:30 a.m., 2008