Mini Mooch-a-thon featured at annual IM run

Former NFL coach and Iron Mountain native Steve Mariucci is pictured with Diane Schabo, president of the Dickinson Cancer Unit Loan Closet, which will benefit from the Iron Mountain Road and Trail Half Marathon on Saturday. The Mariucci Family Foundation is a title sponsor for the event.

IRON MOUNTAIN — The sixth annual Iron Mountain Road and Trail Half Marathon will take runners Saturday on a 13.1-mile route along the historic downtown area, by the Chapin Mine Pit, alongside Lake Antoine and by scenic Fumee Lake Natural Area.

Starting at 8 a.m., runners can participate either in the half-marathon, half-marathon relay or two-mile Mooch-a-thon to raise money for the Dickinson Cancer Unit Loan Closet.

Iron Mountain native Steve Mariucci came back to his hometown this summer to film promotions for the event.

This year, the Mariucci Family Foundation brought its sponsorship to a new level by acting as title sponsor of the former Millie Hill Minithon. It is now the Mini Mooch-a-thon — Mariucci’s nickname when he was coach of the Detroit Lions and San Francisco 49ers.

“We want to encourage kids to be active — get off of devices, get up and get outside. We want parents to be active with their kids — walk, run or just get out there,” he said to the Iron Mountain Road and Trail crew.

He also challenged local schools to have the most participants at the Mini Mooch-a-thon.

The fact the Cancer Loan Closet will benefit from the event was a major reason for his support, Mariucci added.

While he was filming the promotion this summer, Loan Closet president Diane Schabo stopped by to thank him for his support.

The Mooch-a-thon run will start out the same as the half-marathon in downtown Iron Mountain, going over Chapin Pit and right on Third Street. Runners and walkers then will turn onto Park Avenue and go up Millie Hill to East A Street, then make a right onto Van Buren Street to head back downtown.

The Half-Marathon Relay also will follow the regular path of the half-marathon but include a three-person relay. The two transition points both are near Lake Antoine, with the first leg of the relay being 3.45 miles, second leg 5.9 miles and final leg 3.77 miles.

To make sure the runners are well hydrated and taken care of during the event, organizers have set up six water/aid stations at the 2-, 4-, 6-, 8-, 10- and 12-mile markers.

Awards will be given to the first three finishers for males and females in the 2-mile event as well as the top three in the kids’ division. Awards will also be given for the top three males and females for the half-marathon within seven age groups.

Registration is available online at There will be no registrations taken the day of the race.

Participants can pick up their packets from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday inside Iron Mountain City Hall or from 6:30 to 7:30 a.m. on race day. Participants need to be finished with the race by 11:30 a.m., when the course will reopen to traffic, organizers added.

Linda Lobeck can be reached at 906-774-2772, ext. 29, or