RaceCenter Northwest Magazine February/March 2013 : Page 16

raCE PrEVIEW ADVERTORIAL ThE PORTLAND MARAThON hALF CONTiNUES TO SELL OUT MONThS iN ADvANCE Yakihiko Yamaoke The Portland Marathon HALF is no secret anymore. Since its inauguration just three years ago, the event has established itself as a premier half marathon, with a faithful following of returning participants. So it’s no surprise the HALF sells out even prior to the public registration close date — eight months before race day! Runners are learning that it’s a very special and limited participation. Held in conjunction with the full Portland Marathon, now in its 42nd year, the HALF features all the same benefits: custom name bibs, a fast and forgiving course, great entertainment, volunteer support, and the best in swag. But with a smaller cap on entries and a close of general registration in January, participants are advised to register early. Again, the event continues to sell out each year prior to the close. The reasons for the event’s popularity are numerous, beginning with perfect fall weather (55˙ at the start), and a course that’s flat and fast with only 10 turns. Participants complete the first 10 miles alongside the full marathoners, and then continue on to a fast finish. With a streamlined wave start and nearly flat course, Portland Marathon HALF runners stand a good chance of attaining a PR. For those who like to cover the distance at a slower pace, the HALF welcomes walkers too — in keeping with the Portland Marathon’s designation as “The Most Walker-Friendly Event in the U.S.” bestowed by Runner’s World some years ago. 2013’s field for the HALF is expected to include 30-percent walkers. Another selling point for the HALF is music, music and more music. When it comes to volume and variety of on-course entertainment, the Portland Marathon rules! No other event in America provides as much spirit and excitement — there are nearly 40 entertainment stations along the HALF course alone, not including cheerleaders. As one participant noted in a post-event email, “You guys out-rock the Rock ’n Roll events hands down!” Runners enjoyed perfect weather on October 7, 2012 for the 3rd Annual Portland Marathon HALF. MARATHONFOTO 2012 Portland Marathon HALF finisher Kristin Laulainen of Longview, WA. Once participants have been serenaded all the way to the finish, they are lavished with the best and most swag anywhere — no other half marathon in the U.S. spoils its finishers like the Portland Marathon HALF. The overall list of goodies includes: two shirts, a medal, pendant, challenge coin, poster, pre-event publication, a rose (emblematic of Portland, the Rose City), a genuine Northwest tree seedling to take home and plant, and a cornucopia of food and drink at the finish. 2012’s registration data revealed a good percentage of seasoned half marathon participants were trying the Portland Marathon HALF for the first time. Of the hundreds of post-event thank you emails received, many were from these participants now proclaiming the Portland Marathon HALF as the best half marathon they’ve ever completed. One consideration that’s increasing in importance to runners and walkers when choosing an event: Does the event give back? By selecting the Portland Marathon HALF, participants can be assured that a substantial portion of their entry fee not only goes back into building a better event, but also back into the community in support of good causes. Last year, the non-profit Portland Marathon gave over $200,000 in gifts and grants to nonprofits, service organizations, school activity groups, or school athletic teams in the Portland area. Through the years the Portland Marathon’s charity program has helped all types of civic and community projects such as the Friends of the Portland Mounted Horse Patrol, and the Friends of Forest Park — where many of the event’s free training clinic runs take place over the six-month period prior to race day. The 4th Annual Portland Marathon HALF will be held October 6, 2013. General registration closes January 31st, or earlier if the field of 3,000 is filled. For those still anxious to get in after January, a limited number of entries will remain available through participation with one of the Portland Marathon’s official charities. There are two ways to do this: by signing up through an official charity and qualifying for the entry by fundraising; or, registering at the charity HALF rate effective February 1st, with half of the fee distributed to the Portland Marathon’s Charity Giving Program — making this portion eligible as a tax-deductible donation. < r ac ec ent er . c om 16 february/march 2013 MARATHONFOTO

Previous Page  Next Page

Publication List
Using a screen reader? Click Here