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Crowds expected downtown with mini marathon, celebrations this weekend

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.--  The 42nd One America 500 Festival Mini-Marathon kicks off Saturday morning, marking the first weekend in May.

"It'll be my first, so I'm excited, and it's fun, there's a lot of action and activity going on this evening," Janna Minajerz said.

She traveled to  Indianapolis for her first mini marathon. She'll join thousands of others at the starting line, and converging on downtown not only for the race.

"You see a lot more traction into our hotels, our restaurants, it really just allows us to give a little bit more vibrancy and activity to the downtown community," Jacqueline Eckhardt, the community engagement manager for Downtown Indy, Inc., said.

There are Cindo de Mayo events planned. The Indy Eleven and Indianapolis Indians home games. College graduations are scheduled at Indiana University and Ball State University. The weather is expected to be nice, which means more people will be out and about. On top of all of that, it's also derby day.

"It's an awesome weekend, it's obviously our busiest weekend of the year," Kyle Waggoner, vice president of operations at the Winner's Circle Pub, Grill and OTB, said.

Friday night, a crowd already filled the venue to watch the Kentucky Oaks, but Waggoner expects thousands Saturday. He said it takes about a year to plan the festivities.

But the celebrations, races and events also mean more people on the roadways.

"Anytime there's an increase in traffic we obviously have an increase in traffic crashes and there's a need for us to be visible out there, to increase our patrols and that in turn increases safety on our roadways and that's what our goal is," Indiana State Police Sergeant John Perrine said.

He said you should expect traffic back-ups, expect the unexpected and exercise patience.

"The Indiana State Police isn't taking the weekend off, I can assure you we're gonna be out there," Perrine said.

IMPD said it will also have extra patrols out.

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