According to the Stillwater Courier the inaugural Stillwater Marathon has an uphill battle to come into existence.
When creating a new event there are usually a lot of hoops to jump through. I’ve previously highlighted some of the problems that the Indy Classic Marathon had last year. So far the Stillwater Marathon has a different set of problems. First, they need to get approval from city council. The organizers are hoping to have a marathon distance event over Memorial Day weekend in 2009. But this week, the Stillwater City Council took the item off their agenda, delaying any decision indefinitely.
A group of Stillwater businesses developed a petition containing 39 signatures which is the likely cause for the council’s action. The petition requested that the marathon meet the following conditions:
- that the marathon should not start or end in the downtown historic district or within one mile;
- that it not occur any weekend between and including Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend;
- that if an approved route runs through downtown Stillwater, a user fee be assessed toward a “Beautification and Bathrooms” fund for the historic district;
- that all runners be through the district by 9 a.m.; and
- that alternate, adequate parking and transportation be enforced and spectators and participants be prohibited from parking in the city’s parking lots in the historic district.
From my understanding, this takes away much of the context that the event’s planners were hoping to do with the event. In previous discussions with my running buddies we had talked about the event’s viability even if it gained approval.
It seems that there has been a huge influx of marathons in Minnesota (and surrounding states) in the spring-time. Here is a list:
- Trailbreaker Marathon, Waukesha, WI April 4 The 2008 event was canceled and it looks like 2009 too.
- Trestle Valley Marathon, Minot, ND April 25
- Pine Line Trail Marathon, Medford, WI April 26
- Wisconsin Marathon, Kenosha, WI May 2
- LaCrosse Marathon, La Crosse, WI May 3
- Eau Claire Marathon, Eau Claire, WI May 3
- Journey’s Marathon, Eagle River, WI May 9
- Lake Wobegon Trail Marathon, St Cloud, MN May 9
- Brookings Marathon, Brookings, SD May 16
- Green Bay Marathon, Green Bay, WI May 17
- Fargo Marathon, Fargo, ND May 17
- Mad City Marathon, Madison, WI May 24
- Stillwater Marathon, Stillwater, MN May 24
- Med City Marathon, Rochester, MN May 25
- Minneapolis Marathon, Minneapolis, May 31
- Marathon 2 Marathon, Marathon, IA June 14
- Grandma’s Marathon, Duluth, MN June 20
Updated: I just found another marathon… Team Ortho’s Minneapolis Marathon on May 31. And also the Brookings Marathon in Brookings, SD.
Despite the idea that Minnesota is now expected to be home to four marathons within a month of each another, race organizers aren’t flinching about the crowded field.
“There are so many runners out there, I don’t think this will matter,” said John Larson, executive director of Team Ortho Foundation, which is organizing the Minneapolis Marathon. “Each race has unique features, whether it’s different pasta parties or the unique flavor of the city.”
That is 13 15 marathons within a month of Memorial Day Weekend and note that there are 2 marathons within a few hours drive of Stillwater during Memorial Day weekend. Oh and previous reports indicate that it won’t be an easy course, with lots of hills interspersed throughout.
Just some thoughts. What are your thoughts?
[tags] Marathon, Stillwater [/tags]