Two generations after its inception, the St. George Marathon continues to inspire thousands of runners from throughout the world and motivate even more volunteers who support the massive event. The 41st edition will ignite the community once again Oct. 7.
“The St. George Marathon is an internationally known event with a hometown feel,” said Kami Ellsworth, Race Operations Manager for the St. George Marathon. “We have the best community support of any event in the nation. Our volunteers are extraordinary. Many of them have volunteered for 20-plus years and have passed this tradition down to family members. They take great pride in making sure each runner has a positive experience and that each runner feels cared for.”
The bevy of accolades the St. George Marathon has received includes:
- Rated by Runner’s World as one of the four “Marathons to Build a Vacation Around” in the world.
- Included in Runner’s World 10 Most Scenic and Fastest Marathons and Top 20 Marathons in the USA
- Runner’s World listed the St. George Marathon as the fastest fall marathon.
- Runner’s World named St. George Marathon “Most Organized Race” in 2010
Ellsworth said 7,000 runners have registered for this year’s run, and over the last five races an average of approximately 86 percent of participants live outside Washington County.
“Those who haven’t been involved in the marathon really can’t comprehend what a fantastic event it is,” said Kevin Lewis, Director of the St. George Area Sports Commission. “From the bundled-up runners huddling around bonfires before the starting gun, to the refreshing ice cream and cooling misters at the finish line, there is a magic and energy that flows through every participant and volunteer. If you haven’t been involved before, it’s time you find out why this really is such a big deal.”
Beginning in Central at an elevation of more than 5,000 feet and descending toward St. George’s Worthen Park – nearly halfway to sea level from its starting point – the St. George Marathon is 26.2 miles of pain and passion that attracts runners from all over the world.
The personal stories that emerge from each St. George Marathon adds to the rich tapestry of the annual event, Ellsworth said.
“We have runners from 48 states and 16 countries joining us this year and hope that each individual runner can see and feel how important they are to not only the event but to me personally, to our staff and community,” Ellsworth said. “These runners have become like family. Members of our 10-, 20-, 30-, and 40-year club reunite with us each year, catch up on life and strengthen the lasting relationships we have built over the years.”
For a schedule of events, go to www.stgeorgemarathon.com.
About the Office of Sports and Recreation
The St. George Area Sports Commission was established by the Washington County Commission to help responsibly grow the sports and recreation economy in Washington County, Utah, through the promotion and development of sports, and outdoor recreation.
Photo Credits City of St. George Sports and Recreation