Patrice Matamoros, CEO of the Dick’s Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon (P3R), takes a slight breather to share her upcoming plans—after a week of “hyper-intense meetings with key city agencies, traffic engineers, hotels, public safety officials and security teams.” Keep up with Patrice (if you can) as she finalizes details for the big day on May 3rd—from confirming deliveries for 600 porta-potties, 40,000 medals and 22,000 gallons of water to securing 26.2 miles of city streets.
Sunday, April 19th
Early wake-up to ride the first half of the marathon course with Freddie Fu’s Competitive Bike Team manager to check the course for potholes, construction, etc. I will make a stop near mile 20 at Point Brugge Cafe to refuel with my favorite waffles and say hi to one of our neighborhoods (Point Breeze) along the course. I’ll head back to the marathon office for a meeting at 2 p.m. with 100 key team members who will be working race weekend. We will go over final plans and give final instructions and details for race week. After that, I could be ordering dinner in or grabbing something at Sharp Edge with the team.
Monday, April 20
6 a.m. is rise and shine with my teenage boys and daughter. Get them off to the bus and head to Espresso a Mano for a cappuccino with an extra shot. Today is the Boston Marathon and marks 13 days until our race day. After being super-charged with espresso, I will grab Kelsey Jackson, our public relations manager, to do a quick walk—2.62 miles in commemoration of the Marathon distance while we discuss our weekly goals and strategies. We stream the race in our conference room and work as a team while we talk about the competition and track runners we know who are competing. Get a couple more quick walks to keep my lead on the Fitbit. It will be a late night but I will take a quick break to be with my family to see how their day went.
Tuesday, April 21
7:30 a.m. meeting with our COO Dee Stathis to walk through our race week schedule and staffing. Over 4,000 volunteers will help with the marathon so details and job delegation are essential to manage 40,000 runners! I’m hooked on my Fitbit, so between all the pre-race planning meetings I like to take quick walks on the Three Rivers Heritage Trail, which is located directly outside of our office. Will finalize road closures for race weekend, finish editing our Incident Action Plan and walk through the final operational binder for all city and county agencies staffing race weekend. Pick up my son from track and spend the night with my family.
Wednesday, April 22
Early morning wake-up to get everyone off to school. Today is a great day. We will bring the Toyota of Pittsburgh Kids Marathon to kids at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. Before the event, our team will stop at Piccolo Forno to grab a quick pizza. The Andy Warhol Museum is partnering with our team to provide an art project for the kids who participate. We will bring shirts, goodie bags and medals for the kids when they finish their laps around the Atrium and their art projects. Afterwards, our team will return to the office to work through the details of race day for the Kids Marathon on May 2nd. We are expecting 6,000 kids! I will text my kids to make sure they remember who I am. Dinner plans with a board member at Soba in Shadyside to discuss drug testing policy and the elite athlete field.
Thursday, April 23
Run for a Reason charity program meeting in the morning to get updated on fundraising progress. Our goal is $1.5 million, and we want to do everything we can to help the 100 charities that are using this event as a fundraiser. I will have lunch with our charity coordinator at Parisiennes in Oakland for crepes! Afterwards, I will meet with our development manager to discuss the participation of 10 Paralyzed Veterans of America at our event. I will then have dinner with a key volunteer to discuss production at the start line. We will meet at the new restaurant at The Westin Hotel, Bill’s Bar & Burger to discuss the start line logistics.
Friday, April 24
Because I’ll be downtown doing final walkthroughs of the start and finish line areas, I’ll get Eggplant Parmesan for lunch from my favorite Market Square restaurant, Il Pizzaiolo. Then I will make a quick stop to get a sneak peek of my niece, Gianna Paniagua’s art exhibition which is opening during the Gallery Crawl in the Cultural District at 707 Penn Gallery. It is called Vascular Caverns and is an immersive papercutting installation. Afterward, I will swing by the office to coordinate our weekend schedule with the team. We will meet for a quick happy hour with the crew at the Beer Market on the North Shore. A quick toast to the next week with Belgians, crafts and domestics will set us up for show time the following week.
Saturday, April 25
If the weather is nice, I will ride the entire course to make sure we are set to go for May 3rd. I will pack for the following weekend and prep everything that I need to live out of a backpack and duffel bag for the following week. Race week consists of events, dinners and meetings every day and night. Sleep is not something that happens easily, as we need to be available 24/7 during race week. We build out a medical tent complete with an ICU, an expo readily able to accommodate 50,000+ people and a world-class event that will help 40,000 people cross their personal finish line May 2-3! Can’t wait to see them accomplish their goals.
Even though we are all working on overdrive seven days a week, it will be worth it on race day to see people do things they didn’t think they could do. One of my favorite times of the event is at the five- to six-hour mark on our clock. Each person has a story, each person did it and they didn’t think they could but they did and we will all stand to welcome them back from that journey and congratulate them on their amazing accomplishment. We will cry with them, and we will high five them! All of our runners are amazing and that is why we do what we do. Whether it is a mile or 26.2 miles, it is an accomplishment and we are so proud of everyone and thankful that they chose our race on May 3rd!