• YAF Races
    • YAF Youth Races
          • Our kids. Our community. Our future.

            A central pillar of the Young Athletes Foundation is providing free and accessible programming for our area’s kids throughout the year. These programs are focused on our mission of building and providing pathways to the community’s children in their pursuit of active and healthy lifestyles.

          • Wednesday Night at the Races
          • Saturday Morning at the Races
          • Whipper Snapper Races
    • YAF Programs
          • Our kids. Our community. Our future.

            Since its inception in 1990, the Young Athletes Foundation has worked to support the organizations and individuals of its five-county region through a series of kids’ events, grants, scholarships, and other programs that are focused on promoting and providing pathways for kids to live healthy and active lifestyles.

          • Grant Program
          • Running Shoe Program
          • Scholarship Program
          • Fit-n-Fun Run
          • Winter Challenge
    • YAF Volunteer
          • Our kids. Our community. Our future.

            Our tremendous community of volunteers plays a significant role in helping the Young Athletes Foundation to create memorable and successful events for our runners. More than 1,000 volunteers are needed throughout the year to support our fundraising race events for the YAF.

    • YAF Sponsors
          • Our kids. Our community. Our future.

            The Young Athletes Foundation was created to serve the community, and for more than three decades we have done that with the help of our local and regional business partners. With events throughout the year, our sponsors assist greatly in our mission of  providing pathways of opportunity to youth in athletic programs and encouraging healthy lifestyles.

    • What to See & Do
          • Authentic Duluth

            Don’t miss out on the authentic Duluth experience! Grandma’s Marathon falls during one of the most beautiful times of the year in northern Minnesota, and there’s no shortage of outdoor adventures or fun activities for you to enjoy with your family and friends on race weekend!

          • Read More
    • Where to Stay
          • Authentic Duluth

            There’s nothing more important before the race or more welcome after the race than the perfect place to rest, relax, and recharge. With the help of our many lodging and hospitality partners in the area, Grandma’s Marathon is committed to making sure each of our 20,000+ runners, not to mention our volunteers and spectators, have a place to stay on race weekend!

          • Read More
    • Where to Eat & Drink
          • Authentic Duluth

            Every year since 1977, our community has thrown open its doors to runners and spectators in town for Grandma’s Marathon. As the race has grown, the service industry has always been there with a smile to welcome tens of thousands of runners along with their families and friends as they descend on Duluth for race weekend.

          • Read More
    • How to Get Around
          • Authentic Duluth

            There is so much to see and do in Duluth and along the North Shore of Minnesota! Getting there couldn’t be easier with our transportation partners. Whether you need to know where to find parking nearby on race day or you are looking for a way to get around town, we are here to help.

          • Read More
    • Sponsors
          • It Takes a Village

            At Grandma’s Marathon, we specialize in bringing people together for an unparalleled running experience. Over four decades of careful attention to detail has earned us the reputation as one of the most highly organized races in the country. More than 20,000 participants travel from more than 50 countries and all 50 states to join us each June on the scenic shores of Lake Superior, and your message can be waiting for all of them when they get here.

          • Read More
    • Volunteer
          • It Takes a Village

            We agree with our runners — we have the most compassionate and energizing community of volunteers. Every year, we host close to 20,000 participants and we couldn’t take care of them without your help. Grandma’s Marathon is a world-class event with small-town charm because of our volunteers!

          • Read More
    • Donation Campaign
          • It Takes a Village

            We couldn’t do it without you, and we wouldn’t want to! The passion our community has for Grandma’s Marathon is what gives our race its small town charm, and the contributions you’ve made over the years are what allow us to keep improving the world class experience for our participants, volunteers, and spectators.

          • Read More
    • The Marathon
    • Annual Races
    • Young Athletes Foundation
    • When You Visit
    • Support Us

FAQs

Race Cancellation Policies

Our staff is optimistic that our normal race weekend plans can be executed in June 2022, but we are aware of the ever-changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic. Entry fees are non-refundable and cannot be deferred to another year, but we do have a robust COVID-19 Cancellation & Discount Planin the event the 2022 race weekend cannot be held in-person as planned.

It is the primary goal of Grandma’s Marathon to ensure a safe event for all involved. We will not expose participants or the community as a whole to undue risk as a result of staging our event. There may be times when we feel it is unsafe to continue with the race(s). While we recognize the aspirations and commitment of those that have entered the race(s), we will make decisions about the race(s) based on the participation population as a whole. Furthermore, if the community resources are threatened we will act to protect them from unnecessary stress.

Specifically, when pandemics, weather, or other physical conditions present a danger to participants as a whole, we maintain the right to cancel the race(s). Less threatening conditions could result in an alteration of the course or race length to promote a more safe result for the participants. These conditions will be recognized as “an act of God” and will not result in the refunding of race entry fees or future race credits. The staging of a race of this magnitude results in substantial expense prior to the actual race itself. Thus, in the event of a forced cancellation of the event, it is very likely that the financial impact on the race would not be any different than if the race was held without compromise.

The Medical Director, Executive Director, and Chairperson of the Board of Directors will decide by majority vote regarding the cancellation or alteration of the race(s). Prior to the race(s), the Medical Director will apprise the runners of weather conditions and advise on how to adjust to them, and the Executive Director will describe any course modifications. In the event of a course evacuation, marathon personnel or city of Duluth police will direct runners to designated shelter areas to await transport to the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC).

Severe thunderstorms with the threat of lightning that are forecasted to continue throughout the day of the event may result in cancellation of the event for all participants.

In case of severe heat and humidity, the Medical Director, Executive Director, and Board of Directors Chairperson will have the authority to either cancel or shorten any of the day’s race(s). If changing the distance of a race, the Executive Director, Medical Director, and Board of Directors Chairperson will make the decision no later than 4:30 p.m. on Thursday of race week.

In the event that a cancellation or alteration will take place, Grandma’s Marathon will advise participants through various traditional and non-traditional media channels on a timely basis.

Race Registration & Transfers

Yes, you may transfer your entry to another person. This action comes with a $26.95 transaction fee, which is to be paid by the person receiving the transferred entry. No transfers are allowed after May 1.

To transfer your entry, please use your Race Roster account. Once logged in, select the “Transfer” button on the left side dashboard and follow the prompts. This is the ONLY authorized way to transfer your entry to another person. Any other form of transfer or running with another person’s bib has serious repercussions outlined here. You are responsible for setting the cost of your bib and arranging payment for the entry with the person you are transferring it to.

Grandma's Marathon does have Facebook group for those looking to buy and sell bibs. You can find it here

You will receive an email confirmation immediately after you register. You may also check here  and search online for your registration.

Bib number and race packet pickup information for Grandma’s Marathon, the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon, and the William A. Irvin 5K will be emailed to all registered participants in early June.

To edit your registration information, please use the following steps:
1. Log onto Race RosterSign in to the Race Roster account you created and/or used when you registered.
2. Click on “Recent Registrations” at the top of the page.
3. Click on the box that says “Grandma’s Marathon Weekend Races.”
4. Click the “Edit Registration” button.
5. Edit your information and click “Submit.”

Participants must be 12 years or older on race day to run either Grandma’s Marathon or the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon. There are no minimum age requirements for the William A. Irvin 5K.

Once the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon reaches capacity, no one may transfer into it.

Only registered participants, volunteers, and race officials are allowed on the course during any of our Grandma’s Marathon weekend events. If you do not have an official race bib, volunteer T-shirt, or race credential you will be asked to leave the racecourse immediately.

Racecourse and Logistics

Yes, Grandma’s Marathon is a top qualifier for the Boston Marathon. Please keep your official race results email to verify your qualifying time with Boston Marathon race officials.

Yes, the course limits are outlined below. We are committed to providing the safest and most positive race day experience possible. Our time limits are set to ensure runners are protected from vehicular traffic and have the aid station support they need to successfully complete the race.

Grandma’s Marathon Time Limit: 7 hours (16:00/mile pace)
Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon Time Limit: 3 hours, 3 minutes (14:00/mile pace)
William A. Irvin 5K Time Limit: 1 hour, 2 minutes (20:00/mile pace)

We do have experienced pace teams available for both Grandma’s Marathon and the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon to help you reach your goal. There are no pace teams for the William A. Irvin 5K

Our teams will pace the following times for Grandma’s Marathon: 3:00, 3:10, 3:20, 3:30, 3:40, 3:50, 4:00, 4:05, 4:20, 4:35, 4:50, 5:30, and 6:00.

Our teams will pace the following times for the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon: 1:30, 1:40, 1:45, 1:50, 1:55, 2:00, 2:05, 2:10, 2:15, 2:20, 2:30, and 2:45.

Grandma’s Marathon water and aid stations will be located at Miles 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, and 25. Water and Powerade Ion4 (Mountain Berry Blast) will be provided. Nutrition will be available at Mile 17, and fresh fruit will be available near Mile 19 and 23.5.

Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon water and aid stations will be located at Miles 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12. Water and Powerade Ion4 (Mountain Berry Blast) will be provided. Nutrition will be available at Mile 4, and fesh fruit will be available near Miles 6 and 10.5.

Packet Pickup and Communication

Please call our office at (218) 727-0947 or email us at [email protected] and we will help correct this issue.

Bib number emails will only be sent once, typically in early June. If you have lost your email or did not receive it, please bring a photo ID with you to race packet pickup and go to the “Bib Number Lookup Station.”

For a $25.00 fee (within the United States only), you can have your race packet delivered to you 10-14 days before race day. IMPORTANT: The last day to request to have your packet mailed to you is May 20. Requests received after this date will not be accepted – NO EXCEPTIONS.

If you did not select this service while registering, please call our office at (218) 727-0947 and we will add this service to your account. Please have your credit card number ready. You can also mail a letter of request with a check to the following address:

Grandma’s Marathon
PO Box 16234
Duluth, MN 55816

You may also have someone else pick up your race packet for you. To do this, please complete the authorization form (found at the bottom of your bib number email, typically sent in early June) and have the selected person bring the printed, authorized confirmation to race packet pickup.

Refunds and Deferments

Entry deferments are not permitted under any circumstances.

Entry fees are non-refundable. The only exception to this is for those who are active military duty and deployed for service during race weekend (a copy of deployment orders is required).

If you are unable to join us on race weekend, you may switch your registration to the virtual event. To do this, log in to your Race Roster (link) account, select the “Transfer to a New Sub-Event” icon, and follow the prompts. You will be charged a $2.13 transaction fee. IMPORTANT: The deadline to switch to a virtual event is June 1.

Discount Codes

If you did not receive or have misplaced the email containing your 2021/2022 discount code, please follow these steps to obtain it via your Race Roster account:
1. Log into your Race Roster account. Once logged in you will see your “Grandma’s Marathon Race Weekend Registration.” If you do not see your registration, please scroll down to the “Claim” section of your dashboard and click “Claim” next to “2020 Grandma’s Marathon Weekend Race”.
2. Click “Past Registrations” on the top of the page.
3.
Click on the box that says “2020 Grandma’s Marathon Virtual Races.”
4. Scroll down to find your 2020 Race Registration.
5. Under the heading “Additional Details,” click the + Show All link.
6. Your discount code will be the last item on the list next to the words “2021-2022 Code.”
 7.
If you experience difficulties, please contact us via email at [email protected].

You can register yourself and up to three (3) other people at the same time by selecting the “Add Additional Participant” button at the bottom of the entry form. Please ensure you have entered information for all the people in your party before completing your registration.

If all (or some) of the people you’re registering have a discount code, enter each person’s code in the box titled “Enter Promo Code, Charity Code, or Gift Code” when you are completing their section of the entry form.

Merchandise

Yes, although sizes and items may be limited. Please call us at (218) 727-0947 or email us at [email protected] and we will help you make the exchange.

Transportation and Lodging

No, there is no parking at the starting line of either Grandma’s Marathon or the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon. Each participant is required to use the provided bus or train transportation to the starting line. NOTE: These options are for registered participants only, and you must have your official race bib visible to board the bus or train. No spectators or coaches are allowed.

For more specific information about race day transportation, please click here

Because of the popularity of our race, we encourage participants, spectators, and volunteers to begin looking for lodging as soon as possible. Different accommodations, such as campus housing, do come available throughout the year.

Many hotels do not accept online bookings for Grandma’s Marathon weekend, so we suggest calling the hotel to check availability and secure your room. A list of area hotels and other lodging options is available here

Virtual Races

Yes, you can switch to the virtual version of your race by calling our office at 218-727-0947. NOTE: The deadline to switch to a virtual race is June 1. 

Please call our office at (218) 727-0947 or email us at [email protected] with any questions about submitting your virtual race result.

The deadline to submit your virtual race result is June 18-July 5. Instructions on how to report your virtual results will be sent via email in early- to mid-June.

Miscellaneous

June 22, 2024

June 21, 2025

June 20, 2026

June 19, 2027

June 17, 2028

June 16, 2029

June 22, 2030

June 21, 2031

June 19, 2032

June 18, 2033

June 17, 2034

June 16, 2035

June 21, 2036

June 20, 2037

June 19, 2038

June 18, 2039

June 16, 2040

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.