Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon

The countdown is on!

2023 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon registration opens on October 1, 2022 at 7:00 p.m. CT.
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The 2023 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon is officially sold out!

Those still interested in participating in the 2023 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon can explore any of the following options:
Grandmas2021-33

Race Date: June 17, 2023
Race Location: Duluth, MN
Race Capacity: 8,000 (FULL)

Pricing Structure (In-Person)
October 1-October 15 — $110
October 16-December 31 — $120
January 1-March 31 — $130
April 1-June 1 — $140

Pricing Structure (Virtual)
October 1-June 1 — $100

Duo Team Start: 5:45 a.m.
Men’s Elite & Sub-Elite Start: 6:00 a.m.
Women’s Elite & Sub-Elite Start: 6:00 a.m.
Citizen Start: 6:00 a.m.

IMPORTANT: If you are not entered in the elite, sub-elite, or duo categories, you will start at 6:00 a.m. immediately after the elite and sub-elite runners.

Future Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon Dates

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

Garry Bjorklund won the inaugural Grandma’s Marathon in 1977 and was again the champion in 1980.

While that may be his local claim to fame, the Duluth area native also represented the United States in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, placing 13th in the 10,000-meters.

In 1991, the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon was created to recognize his lifelong contributions to running throughout the area and state of Minnesota.

The race has now grown to become one of the largest half marathons in the country, welcoming approximately 10,000 participants each year to the shores of Lake Superior.

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon starts north of Duluth, MN and runs along Scenic Highway 61 and the shores of Lake Superior before taking participants through the heart of downtown Duluth and finishing in historic Canal Park.

 

TIME REQUIREMENT
Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon participants must maintain a 14-minute mile pace, finishing in 3:03:40 or faster. Slower participants will be asked by race officials and volunteers to move to the side of the road for safety reasons as full marathon leaders begin to pass.

2023 LIMITED EDITION 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 GARRY BJORKLUND HALF MARATHON TRAINING SHIRT
$30.00

Let the world know you’re training for the 2023 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 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon 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.

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 in cups at every station.

Fuel will be available at Mile 4, and fresh fruit will be available near Miles 6 and 10.5.

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon has experienced pace teams to help keep you on track throughout your race. Pacers will be available for the following goal finish times: 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.

Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon Award Categories

Open – 1st through 10th
Ages 12-18 – 1st
Ages 35-39 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 40-44 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 45-49 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd

Ages 50-54 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 55-59 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 60-64 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 65-69 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 70-74 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd

Ages 75-79 – 1st & 2nd
Age 80 & Over – 1st
Non-Binary – 1st
Local Runner – 1st
Minnesotan – 1st

19-34 age group awards are included in the Open category. Per USATF rules, gun time will be used to determine prize money and incentive bonuses. Chip time will be used to determine all age-group winners and other award recipients. Non-binary athletes are not eligible for overall men’s and women’s prize packages.

To access the full historical results database of the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon as well as learn more about how to order your official race photos, please click HERE. You can also read more about the the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon all-time event record holders, year-by-year winners, and age category record-holders.

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon start area is unique in that it is bordered on one side by the shores of Lake Superior and on the other by trees and private property, providing little space for specatators. Most of the best — and most fun! — places to watch the race come once the runners have reached the outer city limits of Duluth.

For answers to some of the most Frequently Asked Questions about the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon and race weekend, please click HERE.

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon starts north of Duluth, MN and runs along Scenic Highway 61 and the shores of Lake Superior before taking participants through the heart of downtown Duluth and finishing in historic Canal Park.

 

TIME REQUIREMENT
Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon participants must maintain a 14-minute mile pace, finishing in 3:03:40 or faster. Slower participants will be asked by race officials and volunteers to move to the side of the road for safety reasons as full marathon leaders begin to pass.

2023 LIMITED EDITION 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 GARRY BJORKLUND HALF MARATHON TRAINING SHIRT
$30.00

Let the world know you’re training for the 2023 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 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon 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.

Race packets are distributed on on race weekend at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC). Participants are also given the option at time of registration to have their race packet sent via mail.

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 in cups at every station.

PURE FUEL, provided by Anderson's Maple Syrup, will be available at Mile 4, and fresh fruit will be available near Miles 6 and 10.5.

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon has experienced pace teams to help keep you on track throughout your race. Pacers will be available for the following goal finish times: 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.

You will receive an official, clear plastic gear bag at race packet pickup. A label with your race number will be provided in your race packet envelope and must be placed on the desginated space on your gear bag.

 

IMPORTANT: Unofficial gear bags (including backpacks) are not permitted and will not be accepted. Do not leave valuables in your gear bag. Race officials are not responsible for any lost or damaged items. All bags are subject to inspection and should not be left unattended.

 

NEW FOR 2022: Gear bags must be dropped off at your bus loading location prior to departing to thje Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon start area. No gear bags are allowed on the buses, and they will not be accepted at the start area.

 

Please plan to wear layers that can be discarded in the start area - Goodwill will reuse or recycle all clothing left behind. After your race, your gear bag may be picked up in the finish area tent.

Using official bus or train transportation is the ONLY allowable way for participants to get to the start line of Grandma’s Marathon or the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon. For the safety of our participants, volunteers, and the public, individual drop-offs at the start line are strictly prohibited.

IMPORTANT: Details of our 2022 shuttle bus and train transportation plan are currently being finalized. Specific pickup and dropoff times and locations will be posted and emailed to participants when ready.

Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon Award Categories

Open – 1st through 10th
Ages 12-18 – 1st
Ages 35-39 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 40-44 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 45-49 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd

Ages 50-54 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 55-59 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 60-64 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 65-69 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd
Ages 70-74 – 1st, 2nd, & 3rd

Ages 75-79 – 1st & 2nd
Age 80 & Over – 1st
Non-Binary – 1st
Local Runner – 1st
Minnesotan – 1st

19-34 age group awards are included in the Open category. Per USATF rules, gun time will be used to determine prize money and incentive bonuses. Chip time will be used to determine all age-group winners and other award recipients. Non-binary athletes are not eligible for overall men’s and women’s prize packages.

To access the full historical results database of the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon as well as learn more about how to order your official race photos, please click HERE. You can also read more about the the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon all-time event record holders, year-by-year winners, and age category record-holders.

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon start area is unique in that it is bordered on one side by the shores of Lake Superior and on the other by trees and private property, providing little space for specatators. Most of the best — and most fun! — places to watch the race come once the runners have reached the outer city limits of Duluth.

For answers to some of the most Frequently Asked Questions about the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon and race weekend, please click HERE.

Known for providing some of the best hospitality in road racing, The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon is one of the most popular in the United States and one of the few not held in a large, metropolitan area.

Travel to Duluth for race weekend is made easy with daily, direct flights from the Minneapolis-St. Paul and Chicago-O’Hare airports.

A summer marathon needs a natural air conditioner. Lake Superior keeps our city cool on race day, with an average temperature of 56 degrees and a typical tailwind for our runners.

Race Raves: Runner’s Choice

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon was named the top half marathon in the state of Minnesota by RaceRaves users and readers.

The list, released in 2019, crowned the 50 best half marathons in the United States based on votes from thousands of runners across the country, along with online reviews and ratings.

“When it comes to hosting a scenic destination event,” the award blurb reads, “Duluth knows best.”

Olympic Trials Qualifier

The 2023 Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon will be a qualifying event for the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

The qualifying window opens on January 1, 2023 and the new, updated USATF Qualifying Standards for the half marathon are as follows:

MEN: 1:03:00   |   WOMEN: 1:12:00

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.