• Grandma's Marathon
    • Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon
    • William A. Irvin 5K
          • william a irvin 5k logo
          • The kickoff event to Grandma’s Marathon weekend, this 3.1-mile race starts and finishes near the historic William A. Irvin ore boat in Duluth’s Canal Park. A new racecourse offers a scenic tour of the city, making this the perfect race for beginning and experienced runners alike.

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    • Great Grandma’s Challenge
          • great grandmas challenge logo
          • It’s certainly not for the faint of heart, but the Great Grandma’s Challenge is the best way for runners to experience everything our event has to offer, starting with the 5K on Friday night and continuing with either the full or half marathon on Saturday morning!

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    • KP Challenge
          • yaf race winner
          • kp challenge logo
          • The KP Challenge is a series of three great, local races — Saint Fennessy 4K, Fitger’s 5K, and Park Point 5-Miler — that are strategically placed throughout the year to help participants build their endurance and stick to a regular training schedule.

    • Saint Fennessy 4K
          • saint fennessy 4k logo
          • Get your green on for the Saint Fennessy 4K, a festive fun run perfect for runners of all ages and abilities. Whether you’re a first-timer or looking to jump start your spring training, this is the race for you!

    • Fitger's 5K
          • fitgers 5k logo
          • A perfect challenge for new runners or a good training race for veterans, the Fitger’s 5K has grown into one of the area’s premier spring races and now welcomes more than 2,000 participants each year.

    • Park Point 5-Miler
          • park point 5 miler logo
          • Come enjoy the height of a northern Minnesota summer at the Park Point 5-Miler, which holds the crown as northern Minnesota’s oldest road race and features a racecourse sandwiched between the open waters of Lake Superior and the Duluth Harbor.

    • Minnesota Mile
          • one minnesota mile logo
          • The Minnesota Mile takes you on a scenic, 5,280-foot journey around Duluth’s Enger Park, treating participants to some of the best views in the entire city during the peak of fall’s color season.

    • North End Nightmare 5K
          • north end nightmare 5k logo
          • A spooky end to our local racing calendar, the North End Nightmare 5K brings with it plenty of scary surprises and haunted attractions to the North End of Superior.

    • YAF Youth Races
    • 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!

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    • 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!

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    • 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.

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    • 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.

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    • 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.

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    • 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!

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    • 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.

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

Sustainability

Green Means Go!

Incorporating environmentally and socially responsible practices is an important part of the operational planning and production of Grandma’s Marathon. We’re committed to hosting a sustainable event to ensure Grandma’s Marathon can be enjoyed year after year by thousands of new runners.

The natural beauty of Duluth and the North Shore of Lake Superior are central to Grandma’s Marathon. We recognize the importance of preserving our environment and the impact that our event has. Our organization continually reviews best practices and implements new strategies based on the latest climate research and technology. We are committed to minimizing our carbon footprint by basing our actions on sustainability principles to protect our environment and our future.

Committed to Action

In the summer of 2019, Grandma’s Marathon signed on as a signatory of the United Nations Sports for Climate Action group. The Sports for Climate Action initiative calls on sporting organizations to acknowledge the contribution of the sports sector to climate change and our responsibility to strive towards climate neutrality. Grandma’s Marathon adheres to the initiative’s five principles: undertaking systematic efforts to promote greater environmental responsibility, reducing overall climate impact, educating for climate action, promoting sustainable and responsible consumption, and advocating for climate action through communication. As a signatory, we are committed to achieving the net-zero greenhouse gas emissions goal by 2040.

 

Sustainability Initiatives

Grandma’s Marathon uses Green Stations at our event(s) to assist in the efforts of our staff, volunteers, participants, and spectators to properly sort materials in order to minimize the event's overall waste.

 

BY THE NUMBERS

  • 886 pounds of extra finisher medals recycled in 2019 and 2020
  • 2,137 bibs recycled by Grandma’s Marathon in 2020
  • 2,700 pounds of food waste composted in 2020
  • 7,520 pounds of cardboard and plastic recycled in 2019

Grandma’s Marathon offers a free bike valet on race weekend, encouraging the use of active and eco-friendly transportation. The Duluth Transit Authority (DTA) also offers runners free bus rides on race day.

An estimated 234,000 pounds of CO2 are avoided by busing 20,000+ runners to the start line each year, and our partnership with North Shore Scenic Railroad makes Grandma’s Marathon one of, if not the only marathon in the world where participants can ride a train to the start line. Each year, more than 1,000 runners use the train to get to the race start line.

Goodwill Industries of Duluth is the official clothing recycler of Grandma's Marathon. Runners are encouraged to discard unwanted clothing items at the start line and along the racecourse to be collected and donated to Goodwill. In 2021, our participants discarded 1,984 pounds of clothing that were then donated to Goodwill. Goodwill also sends any leftover race finisher shirts to textile streams to be repurposed into other products.

Grandma’s Marathon donates leftover banners and finisher ribbons to various places to be repurposed, and leftover food is donated to local food shelves such as ChumDamiano Center, and Ronald McDonald House.

Grandma’s Marathon avoids an estimated 148,000 plastic bottles by supplying water on the racecourse via water trucks and fire hydrants. In 2022, Hiccup will provide Grandma’s Marathon with 26,000 silicone cups that were used as an alternative to single-use cups at one water station.

Grandma’s Marathon is working to install solar panels at its Canal Park office building by 2023 in an effort to reduce its carbon footprint. In addition, our organization's policy of busing runners to the marathon and half marathon start lines saves approximately 234,000 pounds of carbon from being emitted into the atmosphere from individual drivers.

How You Can Help

ON RACE WEEKEND

  • Ride the bus! Participants can ride the DTA for free on race day just by showing their official race bib. NOTE: Be sure to utilize the DTA Trip Planner to get around Duluth for the weekend).
  • Take advantage of our free bike valet located between the Inn on Lake Superior and the Comfort Suites. It’s perfect for spectators who want to avoid heavy traffic and enjoy a scenic view of Duluth!
  • Participants — Discard of your unwanted clothing at the start line(s) and along the racecourse to be collected by Goodwill.
  • Look for the Green Stations located throughout the event where Green Team will assist you with placing your waste in the proper container.

THROUGHOUT THE YEAR

  • Donate old running shoes or give them to Goodwill to be textile recycled.
  • Use a reusable water bottle.
  • Take up “Plogging” – Picking up litter while jogging!

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.