One of Oregon Road Runners Club’s priorities is to get runners and walkers outside of their normal routes and out into the beautiful areas beyond Naito, Mt. Tabor, and Springwater Trail. Vernonia Marathon and Half Marathon is a perfect example of that goal coming to life. And it’s one of my favorite races ever (last year I was smiling in all of my pictures; even in the rain!). The course is a point-to-point, so every step forward comes with the encouragement that you are one step closer to the finish line, a medal, new socks, and a really good meal.
On Sunday, April 14th, participants will start their morning at Banks High School to board shuttle buses to their starting lines. The marathoners will begin at 8am at Cedar Ridge Retreat Center in Vernonia, with half marathons starting an hour later at Stub Stewart State Park. The majority of the course for both groups will be along the 21-mile Banks-Vernonia State Trail. The trail is paved so I loved getting the joy of running in the woods, without worrying about tripping over branches or boulders. The course is open until 3pm so runners and walkers are given a good amount of time to finish their races.
After circling around the Banks High School track to the finish line, finishers meet up inside the building for a warm meal, raffle prizes, and award celebrations for the fast finishers.
Vernonia Marathon & Half Marathon (Banks)
When: Sunday, April 14. Marathon at 8am, and Half Marathon at 9am.
Where: Banks High School (13050 NW Main Street)
Packet Pick-Up: Saturday, April 13 from 3-6pm at Banks Middle School, or 6-8am on Race Day.
Cost: $80 for Marathon, or $65 for Half Marathon.