Cops promise big presence at Country Music Marathon - News, Weather & Sports

Cops promise big presence at Country Music Marathon

Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson

Police and race organizers are working to ensure all runners and spectators at Saturday's St. Jude Country Music Marathon feel safe.

They addressed safety procedures Tuesday ahead of the popular annual race, which is expected to attract more than 30,000 runners.

Authorities spoke at the news conference to assure participants they are taking steps to provide security for this year's event after the bombings in Boston.

Agencies from three counties, several agencies and dozens of Metro police officers will provide security. This includes Metro police officers, trainees, ATF, FBI, the bomb squad, National Guard, Office of Emergency Management and private security who will be lining the course and perimeter. Putnam and Rutherford County officials will also be on hand along with the Millersville police.

Race organizers said one of the major differences runners and spectators will see during the marathon will be an increased presence of police, but the main message they want to send is for everyone to have fun.

Officials said any threats to disrupt events or pranks will be taken seriously. 

"We want everyone to be safe, but we want them to enjoy the experience and run the race like it's any other race," said Country Music Marathon General Manager Adam Zocks.

Law enforcement authorities said they have no known threat.

Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson said they are planning for every contingency, though he declined to provide specifics.

Security plans for the marathon have been reviewed since the bombings at the Boston Marathon last week. The Competitor Group, Inc., which runs the Nashville event, also ordered clear bags for runners to store gear.

If you see or hear anything that you believe is suspicious, contact the Joint Terrorism Task Force at 232-7500 or call Metro Police at 880-1515.

Before the big race, a health and fitness expo is set to take place at the Nashville Convention Center.

The expo runs Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and is free to the public.

Copyright WSMV 2013 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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