For the past 15 years, the end of April has been a busy one in the Oklahoma City metro as athletes from all over the world come to participate in the Oklahoma City National Memorial Marathon. We are 16 days away from the sound of the gun, and it's time to start making plans for where to fuel up in the days leading up to the race. Luckily for you, Oklahoma City has a generous helping of pasta places that are sure to please any pace-pushing palate.

Of course, Oklahoma City has all of the great, staple Italian restaurants on hand for those who love familiarity. Zios and Spaghetti Warehouse are both located in Bricktown just a mile away from the starting line. There is also a Zios in the Meridian area next to the airport. Johnny Carinos has both a north and a south location in Oklahoma City, with the north location offering a 10% discount coupon in the race packets. Fazoli's is a popular fast-food style pasta place for those that want a quick and cheap bite to eat.

If you are looking for more of a fine-dining experience and to wanting to see what Oklahoma City has to offer in terms of Italian, we have compiled a list of some of our favorites below:

Vito's Ristorante - Moderately priced with a wonderful at-home feel. Make sure you try the Fat Tony's Pasta Special that comes with your choice of pasta and the option to add meatballs or Italian sausage.

Gabriella's Italian Grill - Gabriella's offers a comfortable, casual, and cozy feel and a menu that is packed with delicious options. The roasted garlic tortellini with sausage will rock your world.  

Rococo Restaurant - Some of the best seafood and pasta combinations around, complete with a classy and chic atmosphere.

Flip's Wine Bar and Trattoria - A great assortment of moderately priced Italian favorites including sandwiches, pizzas and pastas. Might I suggest the Mediterranean Pasta? It's complete with shrimp, olive oil, spinach, fettucine, pine nuts, and other delicious and nutritious ingredients.

Victoria's Pasta Shop - Their new location in south OKC just became my pre-race go-to. I love the whole wheat pasta with added veggies, grilled chicken, and marinara. Very filling but it doesn't sit heavy so you can be ready to run on race day. 

PortoFino's Italian Cuisine - A great selection of staple pasta dishes that are delicious and very affordable.

Stella - A true fine-dining experience, this ritzy Midtown restaurant serves several pasta dishes. Highly recommended is the chicken scaloppini on a bed of linguini with tomatoes and garlic red chili cream.

Bellini's Ristorante & Grill - Bellini's takes traditional pasta dishes and adds a fine-dining flare to each dish with a mediterranean-inspired flare.

Also available on Saturday evening is the First Baptist Church of Oklahoma City's pasta dinner. Enjoy a free-of-charge pasta dinner beginning at 7pm at their campus off of 1201 N. Robinson. Donations are welcome but not required.

Make sure and fuel up for the fun as we celebrate the 15th Annual Oklahoma City National Memorial Marathon on Sunday, April 26. Good luck to all of our runners!