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Sean Astin, War Hero to Run Marine Corps Marathon Sunday

Actor Sean Astin, famous for playing Rudy in “Rudy” and Sam in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, will be among the tens of thousands of runners of the Marine Corps Marathon this Sunday.

Preparations are currently underway for the race in Arlington. Astin and the estimated 30,000-plus runners — U.S. Marines and civilians — will also be joined by retired Marine Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter.

Carpenter is a recipient of the Medal of Honor, the armed services’ highest honor, for leaping in front of a grenade to protect a fellow Marine, and losing his right eye in the process. He was awarded the medal this June.

Carpenter will skydive into the race — which starts at 7:55 a.m. on Route 110 — along with 11 other jumpers, to deliver a 7,800-square-foot American flag before running in the 39th annual edition of the race, the U.S. Marine Corps said in a press release. The race is the third-biggest marathon in the country, in terms of participation, after the Boston and New York marathons.

The race will end, as always, at the Marine Corps War Memorial near Rosslyn.

Runners will start on Route 110, travel through Rosslyn and up Lee Highway to Spout Run Parkway, before heading down the George Washington Parkway, over the Key Bridge and into Georgetown.

After about 15 miles in the District, the runners will cross the 14th Street Bridge before traveling through Crystal City and Pentagon City. From there, runners will pass Long Bridge Park and the Pentagon before traveling back up Route 110, past Arlington National Cemetery, for the race’s conclusion back in Rosslyn.

The Crystal City Business Improvement District is hosting a kid’s day for children in the area to have fun while the family takes in the race. At the corner of 18th Street S. and Crystal Drive, there will be “moon bounces, face painting, arts and crafts, cotton candy, balloon animals, circus activities, and more,” and admission is free.

Rosslyn will be hosting the race’s finish festival, featuring numerous post-race events and activities, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Many of the roads in Rosslyn, Crystal City and Pentagon City will be shut down on Sunday to accommodate the race. The full list of closures in the county is provided by the Arlington County Police Department, but among the notable roadways that won’t be accessible are:

  • Wilson Blvd from N. Nash Street to Route 110, from 4:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Route 110 from I-66 to Jefferson Davis Highway, from 4:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • George Washington Memorial Parkway, from Spout Run to Memorial Circle, from 7:00-10:00 a.m.
  • Eastbound Lee Highway, from Kirkwood Road to N. Lynn Street, from 7:00-10:00 a.m.
  • All lanes of the Key Bridge, from 7:00 a.m. to noon
  • Crystal Drive from 12th to 23rd Streets S., from 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • Columbia Pike, from S. Rotary Road to the Washington Blvd ramp, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  •  Washington Blvd, from Columbia Pike to the Route 110 off-ramp, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

There will also be plenty of road closures in the District to accommodate the race, including in Georgetown and along the National Mall. Parking restrictions will be in place along the course in both Arlington and the District.

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