Young Athletes Foundation

Young Athletes Foundation

You support them. We support you.

A main focus of our organization is to promote the growth of young athletes. That’s why we have created the Young Athletes Foundation (YAF). Through this arm of Grandma’s Marathon, we help community members and businesses that inspire kids to be healthy. Since its inception, the YAF has contributed more than $1,000,000 to area nonprofit youth athletic organizations.

Support the area youth through a donation to the YAF.

DonateYAF Annual Newsletter

YAF Programs


These popular, free races for children ages 14 and under are held for six consecutive Wednesdays in July and August. This YAF activity attracts an average of 400 children each week. Every participant is a champion and receives a ribbon at the end of their event.


July 24:  Bayfront Park
July 31:  Griggs Field/James S. Malosky Stadium, UMD
August 7:  High School Track, Proctor High School
August 14:  NBC Spartan Sports Complex, Superior High School
August 21:  Corey Veech Memorial Field, Hermantown High School
August 28:  Wade Stadium (YEAR-END RUN & PICNIC)

More Information         VOLUNTEER


If winter weather has you pursuing indoor options to keep your kids active, join us for “Saturday Morning at the Races.”

Kids ages 14 and under are invited to join us for our Saturday Morning at the Races program held in January and February. These fun runs are completely free of charge and open to all! After speeding around indoor tracks at the College of St. Scholastica, University of Minnesota-Duluth, and University of Wisconsin-Superior, children will receive snacks and a FREE t-shirt, and meet their favorite mascots!


  • January 5:  College of St. Scholastica – Burns Wellness Center. 1200 Kenwood Ave., Duluth
  • January 26:  University of Wisconsin Superior – Lydia Thering Fieldhouse. Marcovich
    Wellness Center. 1810 Catlin Ave., Superior
  • February 9:  University of Minnesota Duluth – Ward Wells Fieldhouse. 1228 University Dr., Duluth

Registration starts at 9 a.m.; Races start at 10 a.m.

*Please note that outside shoes must be removed before entering the track area.  No one, including parents, will be permitted entrance in street shoes.


This program was developed to provide free running shoe certificates to high school cross-country and track athletes who need shoes, but can’t afford them. The YAF has donated over 3,500 pairs of running shoes since 1991.


The YAF Grant Program began in 1990 with the goal of providing money to nonprofit organizations in Lake, Cook, Carlton, Douglas and St. Louis Counties that strive to provide children with opportunities to participate in recreational and athletic activities. The YAF recognizes that some organizations may have durable equipment needs while others may have non-equipment, financial needs which address the rising participation costs or fees for youth involved in the organization’s activities. As a result, the YAF will consider applications for grants for participation scholarships as well. The maximum funding for scholarship grants is $500. Organizations may apply for both scholarship and equipment funds on the same application, not to exceed $3,000 inclusively. (See page 3 for more info.)  Apply here.


$1,200 is given annually to one female and one male UMD cross-country runner. Recipients must be UMD sophomores, juniors or seniors from the YAF geographic boundaries.

Races that support the YAF

The Young Athletes Foundation is able to provide this support through benefit races and special fundraising. The Saint Fennessy 4K, Fitger’s 5K, Park Point 5-Miler, and the North End Nightmare 5K are the basis of these fundraising efforts. Since its inception, the YAF has contributed more than $1,000,000 to nonprofit youth athletic organizations and programs.

St. Fennessy  

Major Sponsors



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