Goodbye Portland Marathon: Race Canceled after 47 Years

On the eve of the Eugene Marathon weekend, it was hard to hear that the Portland Marathon will not be returning this year.

I’ve only run 26.2 miles twice— and I truly had a wonderful (albeit painful) time both years at the Portland Marathon. I will miss it.

Despite the mismanagement of the race, investigation by the Department of Justice and revelations about the illegal use of race funds, I really believed that somehow the race would return.

After all, we’re talking about a historic Portland event, the flagship race for a city and state known for its connection to running. I ran the 45th anniversary of the race in 2016.

I volunteered handing out roses at this race as a young girl. I chose it as my first full marathon. I then loved it so much that I immediately signed up for it again! The community was there, cheering for me for every single mile and I loved my first marathon as much as my RunDisney race experiences.

For a slower runner like me, the other beautiful thing was the generous course limit. I never had to worry about being swept.

It breaks my heart that the actions of a corrupt few could destroy this race for the thousands. As far as registrations declining being one of the reasons (among many) to cancel the race? That was not because of lack of interest, it was because of lack of trust. After last-minute course changes and uncertainty in 2017 and an egregious course mistake (and other mistakes) in 2016, only the dedicated would sign up in 2018. Better to wait until they get their act together. A marathon isn’t like a half marathon or other shorter distances… most runners run very few of them in a year, and pick and choose carefully. I know I thought carefully when I chose the Portland Marathon 2 years in a row.

Despite all of these problems, I was willing to return to the race and definitely hoping to run the 50th anniversary of the race in 2021. That is just how special the experience was.

Holding the race in 2018, despite lower attendance, would have given the organization a chance to prove to runners that they had turned over a new leaf.

All this race needed was consistent quality, commitment from the organizers and support from the city. It’s a shame there will be no more running this renowned and historic race.

All that is left are the memories.

Read More:
Spectating at the 2017 Portland Marathon
Race Recap of the 2016 Portland Marathon
Race Recap of the 2015 Portland Marathon


Medals Revealed for 2018 Eugene Half Marathon and 2018 Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Half

2018 Eugene Half Marathon Medal

Yesterday, on #MedalMonday, Eugene Marathon hosted a Facebook live reveal of the Eugene Marathon weekend medals!

A terrible screenshot from their live video, but it still gives you a bit of a preview of the 2018 Eugene Marathon (half) Medal!

Sadly, it looks like a better quality photo will have to wait. However, just looking at it initially, I really love that it is the shape of Oregon, with the Eugene Marathon logo on it. The full marathon medal is similar, with a gold color. Both the half and full marathon have the course on the back.

2018 Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Half Marathon Medal

The Rock ‘n’ Roll race series always loves to promote its medal designs, which change every year. I’m running Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle in June, which will be my second Rock n’ Roll race after Vancouver Rock ‘n’ Roll.

Luckily, while not my favorite design, the 2018 Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Half Marathon medal is looking pretty good!

Their medal designs are polarizing— I either love them or despise them. I loved the one I earned at Rock ‘n’ Roll Vancouver, but I despised the one Jason earned at Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle in 2014. It a design of a latte. I know someone who ran the 2014 race as their first full marathon, and was a little sad at the tiny cup of joe he received to celebrate the achievement.

I’m excited to earn this one and am already brainstorming an outfit for that race.

Spectating at the 2017 Portland Marathon

I admit it, although I ran the Portland Marathon in 2015 and 2016, I was pretty happy to be a spectator this year, cheering on my Mom as she completed her 3rd full marathon (and first solo) on October 8, 2017.

I did do a little running… alongside her as I cheered her on.

Just running alongside Mom to cheer her on… This was the only part of the marathon I did this year!

They changed the course significantly this year, which turned it into an out-and-back course, but it still went over the St. John’s Bridge. Mom blew her previous marathon PR out of the water, improving her time by a half hour.

Tired, but happy.

2016 Portland Marathon Medals Revealed!

The 45th Portland Marathon is coming up quickly and in my inbox yesterday was a preview and description of the medals!

2016 Portland Marathon & Half Medals

2016 Portland Marathon & Half Medals

While I was very excited for the preview, I was somewhat disappointed to find that the front of the double-sided medal is practically unchanged from last year. Don’t get me wrong, I adore the medal, pendant and coin I earned last year, but previously, the Portland Marathon has had all-new medal designs each year. I would have especially expected something unique for an anniversary year and was looking forward to seeing what they would come up with.

Mom and I show off our medals at the finish of the 2015 Portland Marathon.

Mom and I show off our medals at the finish of the 2015 Portland Marathon.

Even the ribbon is the same design, with just a different coloring.

However, Portland Marathon medals are unique in that they are double-sided, and it does sound like the reverse side of the medal is completely new.

The reverse is an adaptation of the famous St Gauden’s gold $20 coin. The changes are as follows: Liberty is Portlandia; Portlandia carries a trident rather than a torch; she holds a fir tree rather than a laurel spray; there is an outline of the City of Portland under Mt. Hood rather than the Washington DC Capitol Building; there are roses and rose leaves rather than acorns and oak leaves; and, there are 45 stars for our 45th Anniversary rather than 48 stars for the 48 states.

Excerpt from “2016 Medals, Pendants & Coins” by Yakihiko Yamaoki

I’ll look forward to seeing this side when I earn it after running 26.2 miles!

2016 Disneyland Half Corrals and Course Maps

Yay! The Disneyland Half Marathon is almost here!

Corral Assignments

After improving his 10K time, Taylor was hoping to move up from D corral (Tinker Bell Half) to C corral. I was hoping to have one last chance to use my PR 10K time to stay in B corral.

But Disney fooled us all and switched from having Corrals up to F to having Corrals up to J! Having taken a peek at the course map, this must be to try to avoid congestion, but it’s a little sad.
The corrals are a lot smaller. Jason remains in A corral. I was placed in E corral, Mom in F and Taylor in H, but us three slowpokes will run together in the same corral.

You look up your bib number listed on the waiver to find which corral you are in.

You look up your bib number listed on the waiver to find which corral you are in.

Course Map

They’ve also posted course maps. Judging by how quickly we enter the park, I can see why they needed to increase the number of corrals. Enter the park that fast is a recipe for terrible congestion. I’m really hoping we’ll be able to run before mile 4, but I won’t hold my breath.

Can't wait to run through Angel Stadium!

Can’t wait to run through Angel Stadium!

I also found a really cool hand-drawn map (pdf) with a little more detail on the USTAF website that was used to certify the course after it was measured. It definitely shows how quickly we enter the park.

The exciting thing is this course is very different from both Tinker Bell and Star Wars, so it will feel very new!

All that’s left now is the event guide, which will only be available in a digital format. Soon enough we’ll be flying down to Anaheim and I can’t wait!

Medal Revealed for the 2016 Disneyland Half Marathon

2016 Disneyland Half Marathon Medal

2016 Disneyland Half Marathon Medal

It took them until July 18th, but runDisney finally released an image of the 2016 Disneyland Half Marathon Medal.

Since last year was the special 10th anniversary medal, I was really curious what the new medal design would be. Sadly, I have to say I prefer last year’s diamond medal and the previous medal design series.

This is mostly because the icons of Disneyland park are more important to me than characters. I understand why it was designed that way—the races are themed with “Disney Duos” with Mickey and Pluto headlining the Half Marathon. But Pluto just doesn’t feel like he belongs on a Disneyland Half Marathon themed medal.

However, the medal is still quite amazing, and I love the large encircled D. Probably the only reason I’m being so picky is because this is the first time I have a chance to earn it!

I’m also hoping to get a peek at the other medals from the weekend. Dad and Aunt Sandy will be doing the 5K and I want them to get a preview as well.

I’m certainly looking forward to the Disneyland Half Marathon. It’s only a month away (and registration is still open). We’re finalizing our costumes this week!

Update: RunDisney finally posted a pic of the 5K medal and it’s no longer plastic! Looks sweet.
Update: Race weekend is one month away and RunDisney has posted pictures of all the medals now. I adored the original Dumbo Double Dare design and am not pleased by the redesign, but now I don’t regret missing out on the challenge.

Medals revealed for the 2016 Twilight Half Marathon!

After looking up last-minute race day details for the Twilight Half Marathon, I found this!

The 2016 Twilight Half Medals look great!

The 2016 Twilight Half Medals look great!

After a couple of slow training runs and races with random pains, aches and general sluggishness, I really needed a boost before this weekend’s Twilight Half to replace my nervousness with excitement.

The weather looks like it will cooperate, with highs in the mid-60s and a chance of rain. I won’t have to worry about the summer heat like I thought.

I’m still hoping this will be a fast race for me. Perhaps I’ll even have a chance to beat my previous PR of 2:38:02 (set at Vancouver Rock ‘n’ Roll in 2014).

After our finish, Taylor and I will be celebrating our birthdays as well as finishing the race! How’s that for a post-race party?!

Related: Race Recap: Twilight Half Marathon 2016