Hop into your time machines! It's time for a race through history in one of America's first great cities - the City of Brotherly Love in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. So set the date for this history-making weekend event: The Philadelphia Marathon, Half-Marathon, Rothman Institute 8K, and Kids' Fun Run on marathon weekend, November 19 – 21.
Why Run Philly?
Philadelphia is one city that MUST be visited. And a tour on foot is ideal. Just two hours from New York City and the Washington metro area, Philadelphia is on of America's great cities. And now the great city boasts a great marathon. From 1790 to 1800, it was our nation's capital before the construction of Washington DC. Today this city has a lot to offer its inhabitants and visitors alike. In addition to the historic draw of Philly, it is a thoroughly modern city and has wonderfully diverse and culturally rich neighborhoods.
Whether you are a runner and history buff, a lover of architecture, an art critic, a music connoisseur, a shopaholic, a foodie, this city is exciting and has highlights for all who make the journey here. It is a city full of interest because it is so entrenched in history, and there is much to see and do. At every turn there is a window through time, with traces of Native American culture, early colonial settlers, and the beginnings of American democracy. And the diversity is amazing. After all, Philadelphia is to America what Rome is to Italy!
This is the 19th anniversary of the Philadelphia Marathon, a world-class athletic event that has grown steadily each year. This marathon is America's 12th largest marathon, yet it's prized for its small-town-feel. This event gets extremely high numbers of community supporters and volunteers year after year. Over 2,000 volunteers donate their time and energy to the weekend of racing events, and the volunteer effort is why this marathon weekend is so successful.
The race is put on by the city of Philadelphia and they do a fantastic job. It is an event Philadelphians are proud to organize, support and participate in, and it is something to look forward to every November. It isn't called the City of Brotherly Love for nothing! And this marathon helps keep the tradition of brotherly love in a wonderful community event.
On Your Mark, Get Set...
Runners of all abilities will attempt to reach their goals in Philadelphia. For runner's wanting to qualify for Boston, this marathon must not be missed. The course is flat, with a starting elevation of 54 feet above sea level, and an ending elevation of 82 feet. There are a few rolling hills, but they are mostly in the first half of the marathon, saving most of your energy for a strong second half and finish. Elevation never exceeds 100 feet, so it is an extremely flat and fast course for those wanting to qualify. If you aren't interested in qualifying at this time, this race will make it easy to achieve your PB! And remember, all three races are walker-friendly, so walkers are able to participate as well. For all athletes, this is one of few places where you can experience history and make history at the same time!
The marathon and half-marathon do have size limits. There were 20,000 participants last year and the total they can accept is 23,000 so it is important to register early. This keeps the marathon a manageable size for the city's streets. There will be plenty of arm space for those all runners and walkers—all paces. There is much more room to breathe in Philly than in the larger races, which is just one more reason to begin your training program and register for this event now!
Along the marathon and half-marathon course you will see a lot of American history, such as the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall - where the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were debated and adopted, The Philadelphia Museum of Art – where Rocky ran the famous steps, City Hall, the Schuykill River, and beautiful neighborhoods brimming with architecture unique to the area.
Both the marathon and the half-marathon begin and end at the Philadelphia Museum of Art on the Parisian-style Benjamin Franklin Parkway – so queue the Rocky theme song and get your pictures taken posing as Rocky before or after the race!
You will then criss-cross though Center City, first to Penn's Landing, then west toward University City, where you will pass six colleges and universities including the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University. You will then head north along tree-lined streets past the Philadelphia Zoo. Along the way you will pass historic Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross House, and the Liberty Bell before continuing into Fairmount Park. Next you'll pass by the Please Touch Museum and the Civil War Memorial, and the Fairmont Waters Works, a Greek-inpsired masterpiece of early 1900's industrial engineering and architecutre, among other park attractions, before winding along the Schuylkill River back toward the Philadelphia Art Museum.