Great Grandma’s Challenge

The countdown is on!

2023 Great Grandma’s Challenge registration opens on October 1, 2022 at 7:00 p.m. CT.
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GM 2022 Tigg's 3005

Full Great Grandma’s Challenge

Race Date(s): June 17-18, 2022
Race Location: Duluth, MN
Race Capacity: 500

Pricing Structure (In-Person)
October 1-October 15 — $185
October 16-December 31 — $200
January 1-March 31 — $215
April 1-June 1 — $225

Half Great Grandma’s Challenge

Race Date(s): June 17-18, 2022
Race Location: Duluth, MN
Race Capacity: 700

Pricing Structure (In-Person)
October 1-October 15 — $175
October 16-December 31 — $190
January 1-March 31 — $205
April 1-June 1 — $215

Future Great Grandma’s Challenge Dates

June 16-17, 2023
June 21-22, 2024
June 20-21, 2025
June 19-20, 2026
June 18-19, 2027
June 16-17, 2028
June 15-16, 2029
June 21-22, 2030

Are you looking for the ultimate running experience on Grandma’s Marathon weekend?!

Take the Great Grandma’s Challenge!

Take your experience to a whole new level by participating in not just one, but two of our weekend races. All Challenge participants start with the William A. Irvin 5K on Friday evening, and they follow that up with either Grandma’s Marathon or the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon on Saturday morning.

It’s time to challenge yourself!

Grandma’s Marathon and the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon both run along the north shore of Lake Superior, offering some of the most spectacular views in road racing while running over dozens of rivers, creeks, and streams from start to finish.

With rolling hills and a typical tailwind for runners, the racecourse is home to many PRs and is a top Boston Marathon qualifier each year.
 

TIME REQUIREMENT
The Grandma’s Marathon racecourse is open for 7 hours (16-minute mile pace), while the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon racecourse is open for 3:0:3:40 (14-minute mile pace). Slower participants will be asked by race officials and volunteers to move to the side of the road for safety reasons.

This 3.1-mile William A. Irvin 5K course starts and finishes near the historic William A. Irvin ore boat slip and will take runners on a tour of Duluth’s most iconic landmarks.

The racecourse will bring runners past some of the most popular places in Canal Park and downtown Duluth, including Bayfront Festival Park, Sister Cities Park, Gichi-ode Akiing Park, the Lake Superior Maritime Museum, and the Aerial Lift Bridge.

2023 LIMITED EDITION GRANDMA’S MARATHON or GARRY BJORKLUND HALF MARATHON JACKET
$40.00 (price good until December 31, 2022)

Whatever the weather, this breathable performance fleece zip-up jacket made by Minnesota-based company Storm Creek will keep you at peak comfort and offers the perfect active layer.

MSRP: $75.00

2023 GRANDMA’S MARATHON or GARRY BJORKLUND HALF MARATHON TRAINING SHIRT
$30.00

Let the world know you’re training for the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon or Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon in this 100% polyester, long-sleeve tech training shirt. You’ll look good and run fast!

GRANDMA’S MARATHON SOFT QUARTER ZIP (NEW IN 2023)
$35.00

Made by Minnesota-based company Storm Creek, this luciously soft and lightweight quarter-zip will fit perfectly and snuggle you all the way across the finish line.

MSRP: $55.00

JACKET & TRAINING SHIRT COMBO: For the perfect layering solution in all weather conditions, you can purchase both the limited edition  jacket AND training shirt together for just $55.00 — a savings of $15.00! (price good until December 31, 2022)

NOTE: All purchased items are expected to be shipped in early 2023.

Advantage Emblem & Screen Printing is the official merchandiser of Grandma’s Marathon. To purchase other official race swag and merchandise, please click HERE to visit our official online store.

Great Grandma's Challenge participants are eligible for overall and age division awards in each of the races they are participating in. There is no separate award category for Challenge runners.

The Races

A perfect kickoff to race weekend, the William A. Irvin 5K is a race for runners of all ages and abilities. A new course now takes participants on a scenic tour of Duluth’s Canal Park alongside the shores of Lake Superior before finishing near Bayfront Festival Park.

In what’s become one of the most popular pieces of race weekend, the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon always starts Saturday morning off on the right foot. With an early morning start, runners are treated to a sunrise and spectacular views of Lake Superior as they make their 13.1-mile journey.

The “granddaddy of them all,” maybe a bit ironically, is Grandma’s Marathon. For anyone brave enough to toe the start line, this 26.2-mile race offers rolling hills and breathtaking views. You and thousands of others may start the day as strangers, but you’ll surely finish as friends.

grandmas marathon runners start line

Ready. Set. Go!

Fitger's 5K History

The Fitger’s 5K began in 1990 and over more than three decades has now become Duluth’s premier spring running event.

The 3.1-mile race traditionally starts and finishes in front of the historic Fitger’s building. The scenic race course takes participants through downtown Duluth and Canal Park.

Below are the all-time Fitger’s 5K race records and winners from each year. NOTE: Some early records are incomplete and our staff is working to retrieve those dating back to 1990.

2022 Fitger's 5K Parking Info

The Fitger’s 5K course starts and finishes just outside the historic Fitger’s Lakefront Hotel in downtown Duluth. They travel eastward toward 23rd Avenue East on Superior Street, London Road, and South Street.

2022 Fitger's 5K Parking Info

The Fitger’s 5K course starts and finishes just outside the historic Fitger’s Lakefront Hotel in downtown Duluth. They travel eastward toward 23rd Avenue East on Superior Street, London Road, and South Street.

2022 Fitger's 5K Parking Info

Free parking for the event is available in the parking ramp located next to Fitger’s.

Fitger’s Complex
600 E. Superior Street
Duluth, MN 55802

2022 Fitger's 5K Race Packet Pickup Info

The Fitger’s 5K course starts and finishes just outside the historic Fitger’s Lakefront Hotel in downtown Duluth. They travel eastward toward 23rd Avenue East on Superior Street, London Road, and South Street.

2022 Fitger's 5K Swag Items

The Fitger’s 5K course starts and finishes just outside the historic Fitger’s Lakefront Hotel in downtown Duluth. They travel eastward toward 23rd Avenue East on Superior Street, London Road, and South Street.