Marathon, Occupy Portland forces to share space

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- It looks like the Portland Marathon will be sharing space with demonstrators who have camped out in downtown Portland in support of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Portland Marathon course director Chris Hardman arrived at Chapman Square late Friday afternoon with two police escorts to talk to demonstration organizers. He says marathon directors are fine with the presence of the protesters but says they can't come and go while the race is under way Sunday.

Hardman told the crowd, "If I didn't have the marathon, I'd be out here myself."

Demonstrators earlier said they're determined to stay despite requests from authorities to make way for an estimated 10,000 runners.

The Oregonian reports (http://bit.ly/qPiq7Q) an estimated 600 protesters spent Thursday night in two city park blocks. The marathon starts and finishes in the park area.

Organizers estimate that Thursday's Occupy Portland march drew as many as 10,000 demonstrators. Police estimated that earlier crowd at several thousand.

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Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com