July 24th, 2020
The Mankato Marathon presented by Mayo Clinic Health System is still being planned for October 16 and 17. However, there are many factors that have led Visit Mankato to make many changes to the Mankato Marathon event for 2020. Like many other running events, a virtual option is now being provided for all races. The exception is the Full and Relay Marathons, which will be virtual only.
The safety and well-being of runners, volunteers, event staff, spectators and community is always a top priority. The Mankato Marathon team has been working with its Task Force, including representatives from the City of Mankato and Mayo Clinic Health System, to look at all options and modifications to provide a safe event.The virtual option lets runners participate at their own comfort level while also relieving some congestion at the start, on the course and at the finish line. The decision to make the Full and Relay virtual only was not made lightly and came down to the additional course support needed, the increased time it would take to hold this race with the added modifications and social distance requirements needed to meet current guidelines.
Other changes made to the weekend so far include the cancellation of the Toddler Trot & Diaper Dash and reducing the size of the Scheels Sport & Health Expo and moving it to the River Hills Mall with packet pick-up options on Thursday and Friday, October 15-16. Alternative course options are also being considered for all other races in order to accommodate the safest event for all involved.
President of Visit Mankato, Anna Thill states, “Although all intentions are to accommodate the strong desires of the running community and to host an economic driver for local businesses, the COVID-19 pandemic has created an extremely fluid and challenging environment in which to plan a large running event.” All planning efforts are being coordinated with the City of Mankato and medical partners with a focus on mitigating the potential spread of COVID-19. Implementation will include numerous protocols that have been developed as part of a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan drafted by the Minnesota Running Industry Task Force (MRITF). Their plan came together by collecting information from national events industry experts and their own workers regarding how their operations area can incorporate COVID-19 mitigation procedures. MRITF’s COVID-19 Preparedness Plan follows the industry guidance developed by the state of Minnesota, which is based upon Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Minnesota Department of Health guidelines for COVID-19, Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration statutes, rules and standards, and Minnesota’s relevant and current executive orders. Changes will be announced as they become solidified and approved by all appropriate parties.
About The 2020 Mankato Marathon
On October 16-17, 2020, Visit Mankato will host the 11th annual Mankato Marathon. This accredited race is a qualifying event for the prestigious Boston Marathon and is projected to have an attendance of over 4200 runners. The event will continually grow to have significant economic impact in the community and already has incredible local sponsorship, with Mayo Clinic Health System leading a long list of area businesses. There are many ways to get involved as a business, runner, volunteer or spectator. For more information on the 2020 Mankato Marathon visit mankatomarathon.com or call 507-385-6660.
About Visit Mankato
Visit Mankato, the local convention and visitor’s bureau, is a business unit of Greater Mankato Growth, Inc. (GMG), which also includes the regional chamber of commerce and economic development organization, Greater Mankato Growth, the downtown development organization, City Center Partnership, and GreenSeam, which utilizes agriculture to build on the region’s extensive agribusiness assets to develop the ag economy. Visit Mankato leads the development of the visitor economy in Greater Mankato by actively promoting Greater Mankato as a premier destination for conventions, tournaments and tourism. These activities bring a steady flow of visitors and business activity to Greater Mankato that benefits local residents and future visitors. The work of Visit Mankato helps strengthen the hospitality industry which provides jobs, a diverse tax base and amenities for everyone to enjoy.