Race Preview: Vancouver USA Marathon, Half Marathon, Freedom 5k and Kids Marathon

One of my favorite races in the Portland Metro Area is soon approaching and is selling out fast – The Vancouver USA Marathon and Half Marathon. The event, organized by Energy Events, is ranked as one of the top nine best new marathons for 2014 by Runner’s World and as one of the top 10 “Fun-Feature Filled Marathons in the USA” for 2013.

Photo Credit: Energy Events

The start and finish of the race is in the heart of downtown Vancouver, at Esther Short Park. The half and full marathon start with a short run through downtown Vancouver before the full and half marathon runners split ways. The full marathon continues for 8 miles to Vancouver Lake and then meets back up with the half marathon runners at approximately mile 15 and finishes the course with them. After leaving downtown runners are taken through Fort Vancouver and along the waterfront of the Columbia River before returning to Esther Short Park. The freedom 5k travels through downtown for a half mile, through Fort Vancouver, and along the Columbia River briefly before returning to Esther Short Park. Aid stations are located every 2 miles along the course.

Energy Events, in my opinion, is one of the leading race organizations in the area for kid’s races. My daughter and I have participated in many of them and love them. They are always affordable, fun, and loaded with goodies (bib, t-shirt, and medal). This race is not the exception. There is a Kid’s Marathon taking place on Saturday where kids log miles for the month, totaling 25 miles, and complete the last 1.2 miles of their marathon at this race. This sounds like such a cool event! My child is younger, so we always participate in the kid’s fun runs which are a shorter, yet equally as awesome, run.

My favorite part about this event is that is more than just a one day event. The start of the festivities happens at 2pm on Friday, June 13th with the race expo at Esther Short Park. Shortly after, at 3pm, the Summer Brewfest opens and lasts all evening. On Saturday, the expo opens again in the morning followed by the Kid’s Marathon and Freedom 5k. The Summer Brewfest opens again at noon and closes at 10pm. On Sunday, the full and half marathon runners start in the morning and the Summer Brewfest opens for its final day at 9am until 4pm.

New this year, Energy Events has announced that there will be prize money for the top winners, totaling $2400 in prizes. Thanks to GrindStone, the awards are as follows:

Full Marathon – $1600

  • 1st Men and Women: $500
  • 2nd Men and Women: $200
  • 3rd Men and Women: -$100

Half Marathon – $800

  • 1st Men and Women: $250
  • 2nd Men and Women: $100
  • 3rd Men and Women: $50

If you have family or friends supporting you at this race, it’s a good idea to hint that they can get you finishers flowers at the local farmers market that is going on at Esther Short Park that weekend. I always see dozens of flower being handed out to finishers at this race and it makes me a little teary eyed. Having the farmers market at Esther Short Park also gives your friends and family something to do race day while you are out there running your butt off.

If this sounds like something you cannot miss out on, you need to hurry because registration ends TOMORROW (June 5th). If you register today and use promo code “NATIONALRUNNING” you can save $10 off your registration fees.

I hope to see you there!

Vancouver USA Marathon, Half Marathon, 5k and Kids MarathonVancouver, WA

When: June 13th-15th, 2014 (Kids Marathon and Freedom 5k – Saturday June 14th, Marathon and Half Marathon, June 15th)

Where: Esther Short Park, Vancouver, Washington
Register: Online by tomorrow (June 5th) at midnight