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Digging our black capes? Bring the shuttle!


BUT GRANDMA…… what a beautiful course you have!

Grandma’s Marathon “world class event, small town charm” One day I decided lets go to Grandma’s and run the marathon since it had been awhile since we had ran a full and all my friends agreed.  So why is it called Grandma’s?  Well, they needed a sponsor back when the race first originated  in 1977 and Grandma’s Restaurant was the willing participant and the name has remained the same ever since. This year Grandma’s celebrated their 35th anniversary, with cinch bags and aluminum water bottles to the full marathon runners. The race begins outside of Two Harbors, Mn and ends in Canal Park in downtown Duluth.  Grandma’s Marathon is one of the largest marathons in Minnesota. The race brings in about 10,000 runners from around the world. They hold a full and a the half  is by lottery only and a 5k is held on the day before the marathons. You will finish with this race with ease as long as you don’t dawdle along the way.

The Expo labeled the Essentia Health Fitness & Health Expo is held at DECC where packet pick up is held and over 100 booths display the most current products available leaving nothing out, even showcasing Grandma’s marathon wear that was priced just right!  Upon entering the expo you will find the booth for the spaghetti dinner, where you can purchase tickets for the amazing Michelina’s pasta dinner, salad, cookies, bread and ice cream.  Live a little at the expo and enjoy what the vendors have for you.

The Start is at Two Harbors, where you will need to ride the shuttle buses provided by the marathon. Once you arrive at the starting line, you can line up in a corral with a pace runner provided by Cliff Bar.

The Course begins along Old Highway 61 along the beautiful shore of Lake Superior.  The terrain is relatively flat, some gently rolling hills and there is a large incline just before mile 22.  The best part is the wind is at your back the whole time.  Great race for first time marathoners. Remember there are no shortcuts!

The Finish line is located at Canal Park in Duluth, near the Aerial Lift Bridge.

Where you will run across the finish line and you will end at Grandmas’ restaurant safely.

Tips: Book your hotel or condo early, they fill up quick and they are quite expensive.  Be prepared for what kind of weather they will have, last year was hot and humid, this year 48 and raining.  The start is not so crazy, there are  port a potties along the way, especially at the half marathon point, take your pick.  You may want to decide where you want to meet friends after the race, cause finding them is difficult!  Shuttles are a bit of a walk and if you ran the full, walking to the shuttles may not be quite what you had planned. It’s best if you can stay in Canal Park where the race ends.  You can rent bikes and ride along the beautiful trail of Lake Superior.  And if you are looking for a fast and flat marathon this one is great course especially for first time marathoners.



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  1. Julie Lecocq

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