2018 Guide to Philadelphia Marathon Weekend

 Photo via Philadelphia Marathon

Photo via Philadelphia Marathon

Philadelphia Marathon weekend is less than 2 weeks away! Thousands of runners from all around the world will be taking over the streets of Philadelphia during the 25th anniversary of the race. Whether you are running, cheering or volunteering (thank you, thank you, thank you), we put together a guide with everything you need to know heading into race weekend.

For Runners

Marathon Weekend Prep Rally

Kick off marathon weekend at our Prep Rally in Center City on Thursday, November 15th! We’ll head out on a short, shakeout run with our friends from ON Running at 6PM followed by some post sweat socializing, shopping, and rehydrating 🍻. Our expert staff will be hanging out ready to help you gear up for race day and answer any question you have about running 8K, 13.1 or 26.2. Taste test some of our favorite fuel, pick up everything you need for race day, and maybe win a prize or two. If you’re not going to be around Center City, stop by our Gear & Beer Night in Manayunk. Join us at 6:30PM for an easy run followed by gear & beer back in our shop on Main Street.

Can’t make it to the Prep Rally or Gear & Beer Night? We put together a Pre-Race Checklist for Philadelphia Marathon Weekend. Download yours here!


The Health & Fitness Expo

Runners, your first stop during race weekend is the Philadelphia Marathon Health & Fitness Expo to pick up your race packets that include your race bib, t-shirt, and bag. The expo is free, open to the public, and features interesting vendors, speakers, upcoming races, and more!

When is the Health & Fitness Expo?

Friday, November 16th: 11AM – 9PM & Saturday, November 17th: 10AM – 7PM

Where is the Health & Fitness Expo?

Pennsylvania Convention Center - 12th & Arch Streets, Hall F

How do I get to the Health & Fitness Expo?

Public transportation is our recommended method of travel throughout marathon weekend unless you have a bike or can walk/run to the expo or races. If you plan on driving to the expo, street parking is limited but there are several parking garages nearby.

Where to eat by the Health & Fitness Expo?

What to do if you can’t make it to the Health & Fitness Expo?

If you can’t make it to the Health & Fitness Expo to pick up your bib, no problem! Runners are allowed to have someone else pick up their bibs. The person picking up your bib just needs a copy of your photo ID (government issued) and their own ID too.


Where to Pick-Up Last Minute Race Gear?

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Forget something at home or need an extra layer or accessory for race morning? We've got you covered. Stop by one of our four store locations on Friday or Saturday. 

PR Center City: 1601 Sansom Street; Open 10 - 7:30PM Friday, 10 - 7PM Saturday

PR University City: 3621 Walnut Street; Open 10 - 7PM Friday, 11 - 7PM Saturday

PR Manayunk: 4358 Main Street; Open 11 - 7PM Friday, Open 10 - 7PM Saturday

PR Glen Mills: 505 Glen Eagle Square, Glen Mills, PA; Open 10 - 7PM Friday and Saturday


 Photo via Philadelphia Marathon

Photo via Philadelphia Marathon

The Rothman Orthopaedic Institute 8K (4.97 miles) starts on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, near the Art Museum steps, then heads out along the Schuylkill River on MLK Drive. The course is USATF sanctioned and offers prize money through 5th place.

When is the Rothman 8K?

The Rothman 8K is on Saturday, November 17th and starts at 10:40AM for Wheelchair/Handcycle Athletes and 10:45AM for Runners/Walkers.

Where is the Rothman 8K?

The Rothman 8K starts at 22nd Street/Benjamin Franklin Parkway and heads out along the Schuylkill River on MLK Drive.

Course Map

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How to get to the starting line?

Public transportation is your best bet.  Many roads in the area of the start/finish line are closed and parking is limited. Save yourself the stress on race morning and plan ahead.

Will there be water stops on the 8K course?

The water stop for the 8K will be on Martin Luther King Drive at Sweetbriar, you'll pass it twice. 


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 Photo via Philadelphia Marathon

Photo via Philadelphia Marathon

The half marathon was added to race weekend in 2006. Last year the race featured a new course with almost 10 miles through the city streets including some of the most historic sites and iconic areas that Philadelphia has to offer. The course is USATF sanctioned and offers prize money through 5th place.

When is the Dietz & Watson Half Marathon?

The half marathon is on Saturday, November 17th and starts at 7:27AM for Wheelchair/Handcycle Athletes and 7:30AM for Runners/Walkers.

Where is the Dietz & Watson Half Marathon?

The half marathon starts at 22nd Street/Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The course winds through Old City, University City, Fairmount Park, and MLK Drive before ending near the Art Museum.

Course Map

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Looking for more course information? Check out the course story map here or the interactive map here.

How to get to the starting line?

Public transportation is your best bet. The half marathon course closes many roads and parking near the start/finish area is limited. Save yourself the stress on race morning and plan ahead.

Will the half marathon have pace teams?

The Philadelphia Runner Pace Team will be pacing the Dietz & Watson Half Marathon. Meet the 2018 Half Marathon Pacers here.

Dietz & Watson Half Marathon Pace Groups: 1:30, 1:45, 2:00, 2: 15, 2:30

Where will there be portapotties and water stops on the half marathon course?

  • Starting Area: Eakins Oval

  • Columbus Boulevard & Race Street

  • Columbus Boulevard & Washington Avenue

  • 6th & Walnut Streets

  • 33rd & Market Streets

  • Reservoir Drive (just past Smith Memorial Playground)

  • Kelly Drive at Lloyd Hall

  • Finish Area: Benjamin Franklin Parkway


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The first three words that come to mind about the Philadelphia Marathon are: Flat, Fast and Fun! The course takes you on a 26.2 mile tour through historic and scenic Philadelphia. The Philadelphia Marathon is consistently listed among the top 10 marathons in the country and is a local favorite. The course is USATF sanctioned, a top qualifier for the Boston Marathon, and offers prize money through 5th place. If you live in the city, there’s also a prize for the first Philadelphians (male/female) to cross the line!

When is the AACR Full Marathon?

The full marathon is on Sunday, November 18th and starts at 6:55AM for Wheelchair/Handcycle Athletes and 7AM for Runners/Walkers. If you are participating, plan to get to your corrals around 6 – 6:15AM.

Where is the AACR Full Marathon?

The full marathon starts at 22nd Street/Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The course winds through Old City, University City, Fairmount Park, MLK & Kelly Drives, Manayunk and more before ending near the Art Museum.

Course Map

Looking for more course information? Check out the course story map here, the interactive map here, the course with details, the certified course map, and the elevation map here,

How to get to the starting line?

Public transportation is your best bet. The full marathon course closes many roads and parking near the start/finish area is limited. Save yourself the stress on race morning and plan ahead.

Will the full marathon have pace teams?

The Philadelphia Runner Pace Team will be pacing the AACR Full Marathon. 

AACR Philadelphia Marathon Pace Groups: 3:00, 3:10, 3:20, 3:30, 3:40, 3:50, 4:00, 4:10, 4:20, 4:30, 4:40, 5:00

Meet the full marathon pacers!

Where will there be portapotties and water stops on the full marathon course?

  • Starting area: Eakins Oval

  • Columbus Boulevard & Race Street

  • Columbus Boulevard & Front Street

  • 6th and Walnut Streets

  • 31st and Chestnut Streets

  • 34th Street and Fairmount Avenue

  • Avenue of the Republic

  • Disabled Rowers’ Boathouse, Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive and Black Road

  • Kelly Drive and Sedgley Avenue (runners will pass twice)

  • Kelly Drive and Fountain Green (runners will pass twice)

  • Kelly Drive and Ferry Street (runners will pass twice)

  • Main Street and Ridge Avenue (runners will pass twice)

  • Main and Cotton Streets (runners will pass twice)

  • Finish Area: Benjamin Franklin Parkway


Be a VIP and hang out with Meb & Desi!

 Hang out with Meb & Desi in the VIP tent!

Hang out with Meb & Desi in the VIP tent!

Meb Keflezighi & Desiree Linden are hanging out in Philly for the 25th Anniversary American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Philadelphia Marathon Weekend! You can mix and mingle with these two legends at the Health & Fitness Expo at the Question & Answer portion, a Saturday shakeout run, AND in the VIP tent. That’s right, you can get up close and personal with Meb and Desi on race day! Runners in the half and full marathons this year can upgrade to VIP status. The VIP package includes:

  • VIP packet pick-up area at expo

  • VIP parking discounts at designated lots

  • VIP shuttle transportation to and from the headquarter hotel to the race

  • Private heated hospitality tent near the start/finish of race

  • Pre-race breakfast: Continental light fare to include but not limited to: assorted bagels, muffins, toast, oatmeal, yogurts, fresh fruit, coffee, tea and juices

  • Post-race brunch with select open bar (must be 21 years old with proper ID)

  • Private restrooms, changing tents and bag check

  • Recovery zone including padded stretching area with padded mats, self-treatment area, first aid station and massage

  • Finishers merchandise and marathon weekend commemorative items for sale

If you’re already registered and want to upgrade, it's not too late! Log in to your account and go to ADD-ONS tab at the top to add the VIP package to your registration.


For Fans, Family & Friends

The Philadelphia Marathon Weekend isn't just for runners, it's for the entire city of Philadelphia! If you're not running in one of the races, there are plenty of ways for you to get involved. 

Volunteer

Over 2,500 volunteers are needed throughout race weekend including the Health & Fitness Expo, the Rothman Institute 8K , Dunkin' Munchkin Run, AACR Philadelphia Marathon and Dietz & Watson Half Marathon. As a volunteer, you'll be helping over 30,000 runners from every state and many countries from around the world. There is a role for everyone - bring your friends, family, co-workers, running clubs, etc. Race weekend wouldn't be possible without the help of volunteers like you, click here to volunteer.

Cheer

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The City of Philadelphia is known for having passionate fans. Whether we're cheering for the Phillies to round the bases or Eagles to score a touchdown, Philly fans are loud and proud. Join thousands of fellow marathon, half marathon, and 8K fans at cheer zones along the courses on Saturday, November 17th and Sunday, November 18th. 

We'll have a Marathon Cheer Zone around Mile 20 at our shop on Main Street in Manayunk that's open to everyone starting at 8AM on Sunday, November 18th. See where all of the other Dietz & Watson Half Marathon and AACR Marathon Cheer Zones are this year and join the fun on race weekend!


For everyone: Where to eat (and celebrate!) post run?

Whether you ran in one of the races, volunteered, or came to cheer, you need a place to refuel when you’re done. The start and finish line are close to some great places in the Fairmount neighborhood but you are also not a far walk from restaurants in Center City. We put together a few of our Fairmount favorites:

Remember there are thousands of other runners, volunteers, family and friends who will be looking for a place to eat after the race. We recommend having a designated post race meet up spot and making reservations if you are a large group.