Course Bands Announced

James Andrews and the Crescent City All-Stars will be among this year's performers along the route.

It just wouldn’t be the Jazz Half without local New Orleans performers playing our favorite songs.

Watch for these entertainers along the course:


Everything You Need To Know About Race Day

When: Saturday, Oct. 29. Runners take note that both the Half Marathon and the 5K begin at 7 a.m.

Where: Both the Half Marathon and the 5K begin and end at Lafayette Square, New Orleans. You can find a turn-by-turn map of the course with water stations and mile markers locations here

Packet pickup: We strongly encourage participants to pick up their race packets at the Race Expo on Oct. 28 at the Renaissance New Orleans Arts Hotel - Patrons Ballroom, in the Warehouse District. Race day packet pickup will be available at the same location: Renaissance Arts Hotel - Patrons Ballroom, First Floor - 700 Tchoupitoulas Street, from 5:30 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. (Click here for a map. to the packet pickup location).


Packet pickup begins at 5:30 a.m. at Renaissance Arts Hotel - Patrons Ballroom, First Floor - 700 Tchoupitoulas Street. It is a short walk from Packet Pickup to the start of the race. See map below for directions.


Parking: You don’t have to wait until race day to find parking. We have partnered with Parking Panda to offer racers online parking reservations ahead of the Jazz Half.

Need a place to stay: We are proud to partner with Marriott to offer our runners discounted rates at several of their beautiful New Orleans properties. There is still time to book from our Discounted Lodging list.

Medical help: New Orleans EMS will have ambulances along the course and at the finish line. Acadian Ambulance will again be providing a medical tent at the finish line. The tent will be supported by LSU Health New Orleans and Children’s Hospital medical staff. The Blood Center will also be lending us use of the Blood Mobile for those needing more private medical attention.

Bands along the course: It just wouldn’t be the Jazz Half without local New Orleans performers playing our favorite songs. We'll be updating our list of bands on the course shortly!

Post-race Party Entertainment: Our featured performers this year are The Danny Alexander Blues Band, and Rockin' Dopsie Jr.

Post-race Party food: Jambalaya, red beans and rice, hot dogs and chili, sno-balls on a stick from Sno-Balls To Go, a variety of Coca-Cola products, Kentwood Spring water and beer by Abita Beer.

Run For Free deadline is Oct. 29: Raise at least $250 for the Cancer Program and you can run for free! Your registration fee will be reimbursed through EventBrite no more than four days after the race. The person who raises the most money will win a three-night stay at a Marriott property anywhere in the lower 48 states and airfare for two. Anyone who raises at least $250 will be entered in a drawing for a chance to win a weekend stay at a Marriott property on the Gulf Coast.

Gear check: There will be a gear check tent in Lafayette Square with volunteers to hold your personal items during the race. A gear claim tag will be affixed to the bottom of your race number. This tag will have your race number on it. Attach the gear claim tag to your bag and drop it off at the tent. To retrieve your items, simply show the volunteers your race number and they’ll hand over your bag.

Pacers for the following times (Time of finish)

  • 2:00
  • 2:30
  • 3:00
  • 3:30

Need more info: Check out our list of Frequently Asked Questions, like us on Facebook, and continue to check for more updates about the race. 

Running For the Love Of It!

One Racer's Story About Making the Jazz Half Her First Half Marathon

With its flat course and beautiful scenery, the Jazz Half Marathon appeals to many runners. Amanda Evans Gros, 45, of Houma was one such racer who made the 2014 Jazz Half her first half marathon.

While her running time of 3 hours, 5 minutes and 53 seconds was not the fastest, she takes great pride in the achievement. Her medal, bib, completion certificate and the photo capturing her crossing the finish line hangs prominently in her office at Perque’s Flooring, where she works as a scheduler and social media manager.

“I’m not fast. It’s hard. It doesn’t come easy to me like it does with other people,” Gros said. “I struggle with it, but I love it.”

Running was something she could not do until a few years ago. In June 2011, Gros had gastric surgery to transform her life. She lost 202 pounds from her heaviest and has maintained a weight loss between 185 and 194 pounds. She credits running as a big help with that, both physically and mentally.

“Running is the best free therapy,” she said. “It’s calmed me down in a lot of ways when I am able to do it as much as I want to. It’s definitely therapy like no therapist could ever give you.”

Gros said she began running competitively about a year-and-a-half ago. She’s run in multiple 5Ks, 10Ks and even completed the Louisiana Bridge Run Series that took her over the Huey P. Long, Hale Boggs and the Crescent City Connection. However, her ultimate goal was to complete a half marathon.

The Jazz Half was the perfect fit for her.

“To me it was kind of quintessential New Orleans,” said Gros. “It may sound silly, but I want to get a tattoo of a running girl and I want her to have the saxophone with my time in the music notes.”

The race, she said, was well organized and had some of the most encouraging and friendliest people who kept her going whenever she felt like slowing down with their cheers of, “Go, Wonder Woman! Go!”

“The atmosphere that we experienced for the Jazz - especially that long stretch down St. Charles - was amazing,” said Gros. “From the bands on the side of the road to the people, the cops, everyone was just super supportive and friendly. I couldn’t have asked for a better first half marathon.”

Gros does have some advice for runners looking to take on the Jazz Half as their half marathon or to anyone looking to make running a big part of living a healthier lifestyle.

“Get yourself a running partner. I had the best in Alesha. We pushed each other when the other was ready to quit. While on long runs we would talk, soul search, cry and sometimes even fight. Then other times we would not talk for miles. There were times she left me because I made her mad, but we always ended up at the same place at the same time,” said Gros. “Honestly this is the best secret to running.”

Runner’s World Names Jazz Half as One of the Year’s Best Half Marathons

Runner’s World, a US-based international running magazine with a circulation of more than 700,000 readers, named the Jazz Half Marathon and 5K among the Year’s Best Half Marathons. The beautiful route that takes runners through some of the most historic parts of the city, the ease of running a “pancake flat” course, and a great post-race party once racers cross the finish line were all the things that helped the Jazz Half make the list. CLICK HERE to read the full list.

Picture Perfect Smiles for the Race to Beat Childhood Cancer

The 7th Annual Jazz Half Marathon and 5K is set for Saturday, October 31, 2015, and race organizers are hard at work to make this year’s Jazz Half the best ever, with great music, great food and beer and – as always – a great course for our runners!
The smiling faces of our young cancer patients will once again grace the mile-markers, banners, and signs that line the course and decorate the post-race party, reminding Jazz Half runners that they are racing to beat childhood cancer.
More than 3,500 runners crossed the finish line at last year’s race. The event raised over $350,000 for the Cancer Program at Children’s Hospital.
If you need motivation to finish the 13.1 miles, look no further than these kids.
Jordan Sabio, age 14, is being treated at Children’s Hospital for osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer that most often affects teenagers and kids during growth spurts. His mom, Julie, brought him to the photo shoot in a wheel chair to keep him off of his leg, which must be kept elevated after a recent surgery.
“Get my left side,” Jordan says when asked what side he would like to be photographed on. “It’s my sexy side,” he explains, bringing a round of laughs from everyone in attendance. He makes jokes like that throughout his shoot while answering questions for his bio. 
What’s your favorite movie? Anything with Adam Sandler, but Grown Ups tops the list.
Favorite TV show? Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
Favorite food? Sushi.
“My favorite Saints player is now in Seattle,” he says, making a sigh at the question. “I guess Thomas is now my official favorite.” He is on a first name basis with NFL punter Thomas Morstead, who has visited him a number of times during hospital stays.
What does he like best about Children’s Hospital?
“They treat you like family,” he says.
The upbeat attitude of Jordan is not unique among the cancer kids having their photos taken.
Kay Colton, age 8 Leukemia, uses the photo shoot to strike a smiling pose with a microphone. She sang the National Anthem at the start of last year’s Jazz Half Marathon and 5K. She came to the photo shoot after being discharged from her latest hospital stay.
Her favorite thing to do for fun? Play with her baby sister, Kenzie. She pauses the photo shoot to take a quick dance break with Kenzie when mom, Cabrina, plays the little girl’s favorite Taylor Swift song, “Shake It Off.”
What does Kay like best about Children’s Hospital?
“Kristin from Child Life,” she says, referring to Kristin Haugen, a Child Life Specialist who uses play as part of the special therapies a child receives at Children’s Hospital. “I like to play Xbox with her.”
Madison Boudreaux, Age 11 osteosarcoma, came all the way from Houma to be part of the photo shoot. What does she like best about Children’s Hospital? “This is a hard one,” she says, taking a moment to consider her answer. “The pickles in the gift shop.”
“We love coming here,” says Jaime Boudreaux, Madison’s mom. She goes on to explain the family is well acquainted with the level of care Children’s Hospital brings to children across the Gulf Coast.
“We knew the experience. When she was diagnosed, we didn’t think twice,” Jaime says. “We knew where we would come.”