It’s marathon week again and for the seventh time, I’ll be making the drive to Duluth for Grandma’s Marathon.
It’s always been a special race — and I’m as excited to run it this year as I’ve ever been.
Perhaps it’s because Duluth is a special place.
Few cities embrace the marathon like Duluth. Race officials nail the logistics and organization, volunteers genuinely care about the runners and residents turn out to support and cheer on participants — making the final 3-4 miles a magical experience. Add a truly terrific point-to-point course and you end up with an amazing experience.
Truth be told, when I showed up in 2008 for Grandma’s Marathon for my first marathon, plenty of friends had given it rave reviews. Everything about the race — from the expo to starting line transportation to post-race atmosphere — exceeded expectations. It set the bar to which all other marathons would be judged in my mind, and there are few that can compare. That’s why I ran it for 5 consecutive years — and why I felt compelled to go back last year after a 3-year hiatus. It’s why in December, while resting from injury, I signed up again for this year’s race.
For a preview, check out this course video from the Duluth News Tribune. The newspaper also has written several articles leading up to Saturday’s race, and provides great race day coverage, including a commemorative edition. Click here to read other Grandma’s Marathon stories.