The 50th annual Bay City Saint Patrick’s Day Races are this weekend, and the runners are getting ready.

The annual 8K, 5K, and leprechaun races, along with the parade, draw thousands of people to downtown Bay City every year.

It all starts at 10 a.m. Saturday with a fitness expo at Bay City Central, followed by the leprechaun races of the children. Then, prior to Sunday’s Parade, runners can choose to walk or run either an 8K or a 5K, or to run both for the Irish Doubles competition.

“It’s been really great, participation wise,” said Carlos Orsoco, one of the event’s participants. “There’s less than 300 spots available for the Irish Doubles. We limit that to a thousand participants. We have 250 young runners participating in the leprechaun races on Saturday so far, and that’ll continue to grow. Watching them out there on the track with their parents trying to keep up with them is an event in itself.”

Registration is still open for the races, and Orosco says they expect to see many more people register during the fitness expo on Saturday. For more information, visit