Voted the best running event in Utah, the Alaska Airlines Salt Lake City Marathon incorporates a little bit of fun and a lot of majesty for everyone. The 26.2-mile course gives participants a view of everything from the snow-capped peaks of the Wasatch Mountains to the contrasting flower-covered streets of the city’s neighborhoods. Though the event started out as a full marathon back in 2004, it has since expanded to include a half marathon, 5K, 10K and a bike and skate route. Break out your running shoes or rollerblades and start stretching because this is one event you don’t want to miss.
This USA Track & Field-certified course opens up at Olympic Legacy Bridge at the University of Utah and winds its way toward the base of the Wasatch Mountains. Along the way, runners will pass through the lush Memory Grove Park, downtown near Temple Square and scenic Sugarhouse Park, SLC’s “Crown Jewel.” Runners will finish their southern journey at Downtown Holladay and then head back north toward the finish line.
For full marathon runners, there is still quite a journey to go. The course takes participants up S. Highland Dr. and crosses over to S. 600 E., where it continues straight through Liberty Park. Once competitors come out the other side, the finish line is just a mile away.
The half marathon course follows the same route right up until mile marker nine. Where full marathon runners veer left toward Sugarhouse Park, half marathoners turn right at S. 600 E. and jog up through Liberty Park. At Washington Square, cheering spectators and the sounds of music wait to greet the athletes.
When: April 21, 2018
Where: Salt Lake City, UT
How: Register HERE
The race begins at 7:00 a.m. and participants have six and a half hours to complete it. There are 17 aid stations along the route, each of which has a restroom and Gatorade products. The Alaska Airlines Salt Lake City Marathon is open to all participants who can complete the course within the allotted time frame, regardless of age. Streets reopen at 1:30 p.m., at which time all racers must be off the roads.
Once the race is over, you will have plenty of time to explore the great SLC. Give your body a rest and your brain a workout and visit Temple Square to learn more about the Church of Latter Day Saints. If your goal is to relax and unwind, take a stroll through the Red Butte Garden and Arboretum, which sits at the foothills of the looming Wasatch and boasts a collection of fragrant flora such as Alpine Violet, Lenten Rose, and Windflower. If your children ran the Kids K, reward them with a fun-filled afternoon at Hogle Zoo. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to join in on the Zoo’s Party for the Planet celebration, an event designed to teach young people what they can do to help the planet and coexist with native animals.