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2021 Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon Postponed to October

Just weeks after pulling off a very successful first virtual Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon, race officials announced the 2021 date will not be run in April as has been customary, but postponed until October hoping for a better chance to run the race in person. To help make that happen, the 2021 Memorial Marathon is postponed to the weekend of October 2-3, 2021.

The Half Marathon, 5K and Kids Marathon will be run on Saturday, October 2 and the Marathon and Relay on Sunday, October 3, 2021, to best distance runners at the Start and Finish Lines. Race officials are still considering whether or not to include a bike race – more details coming in 2021. The October dates also provide the opportunity to hold the Health & Fitness Expo in the new Oklahoma City Convention Center.

The decision to move the race to October is based on recommendations from the Memorial’s Come Back Team of community leaders, health officials, emergency management, first responders and in consultation with major marathons around the world.  

“While the virtual Memorial Marathon exceeded our expectations this year, we realize how meaningful it is to all be together in person for the #RUNtoREMEMBER,” said Kari Watkins, Race Director. “This is not just another marathon, this is one of Oklahoma City’s signature events that brings our whole community together. If a few more months allows people to run together, it’s worth the delay.”

Also new, Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon has been chosen as one of the qualifying marathons for the 2021 Series (3rd Edition) of the Abbott World Marathon Majors Wanda Age Group World Rankings. During the qualifying period of January 1 through December 31, 2021, runners can compete in eligible marathons across the world to earn ranking points. At the end of each qualifying period, the top-ranked runners in each age group will be invited to the 2022 AbbottWMM Wanda Age Group World Championships.

(11/11/2020) Views: 67 ⚡AMP
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Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

2020 marathon postponed to Oct 4. The Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon is about more than running, it is about celebrating life. This is the spirit in which the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon was conceptualized by two Oklahoma businessmen who, while on a morning run, created the outline for this inspiring event. A group of volunteer chairmen and some Memorial staff,...

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2020 Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon Goes Virtual

Thank you for your interest in the 20th Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon – the Run to Remember! Our special thanks for hanging in there and being patient with us as we have worked through the unprecedented times of COVID-19 as we made our decision.

We are announcing that we are transitioning from a traditional Marathon weekend as we have done the past 19 years to a Virtual OKC Memorial Marathon. We have studied every way to have the race and every reason we shouldn’t and the facts are clear.

We are very disappointed, but with the rising numbers of COVID cases, it simply makes it impossible and would be irresponsible for us to bring 25,000+ runners together on the streets of Oklahoma City. There is no way to execute a traditional Marathon in 2020.

We pledge to you to make the Memorial Marathon one of the most amazing virtual runs you have ever experienced! But for the health of our community, we must run virtually! We will work with the best platforms to make it a 20th year to remember.

For instance, you will still experience the 168 seconds of silence as we all pause to remember those who were killed, those who survived and those changed forever. The reason you run this race will still be made available to you via technology and our media partners.

What this means for you the runner–

All runners currently registered for the 2020 Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon will be automatically transferred to the Virtual OKC Memorial Marathon and can run the race any time between October 4-18, 2020.

Anyone not currently signed up for one of the five races can still do so at okcMarathon.com, there will be no more price increases and registration will close on Thursday, October 1st.

If you are already registered and choose not to run virtually, you may–

Donate your registration to the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, a private 501(c) 3 and the sole beneficiary of the Memorial Marathon proceeds.

Defer to the 2021 OKC Memorial Marathon

Defer to the 2022 OKC Memorial Marathon

You will need to make your decision on this by next Wednesday, August 12th and you will be responsible for going to okcMarathon.com to make that change.

If you choose to run the Virtual OKC Memorial Marathon, you will receive your event shirt, medal and other swag (depending on your race) ahead of October 4th

You will also receive a coupon code for a 20% discount to the 2021 race after your time has been posted as our way of saying thank you for Running to Remember in this special anniversary year.

If you are running the Kids Memorial Marathon, our team will work with you and your team to make sure it is a Run to Remember and provide the educational material for you to use at home or at school.

We will still honor the Changing the Course of OKC Challenge and you will receive that commemorative coin if you ran the Marathon or Half Marathon in 2019 and virtually in 2020. You have been monumental in our race and we are grateful.

The Oklahoma Standard Challenge is still on if you virtually run the 2020 Marathon or Half Marathon in both Oklahoma City and Tulsa’s Route 66 Marathon in November. You will receive that commemorative medal in your Route 66 race packet.

If you are running the Memorial Marathon Relay, the Governor’s Challenge is still in place. Governor Stitt and his team will be running and your goal is to beat his team’s time to get a special commemorative t-shirt that says “I beat the Governor!”

Of course, this is not how we had envisioned our 20th Memorial Marathon. As you know, it takes committed sponsors, thousands of volunteers to work the course and water stops. The tireless help from the cities of Oklahoma City, Nichols Hills and the Village that host our course and law enforcement, paramedics, fire fighters and medical personnel to staff 16 medical stations along the course provide amazing support. All of these people are already working extra hours to keep our communities safe.

We CAN still run the Memorial Marathon in October 2020 and make it very special. We will just be running together for the same cause by running separately and working to prevent the spread while furthering our mission by Looking Back and Running Forward.

We look forward to running this journey with you and to seeing your face at the start line on April 25, 2021. In the meantime, I hope you will run virtually with us and enjoy the technology and media that will be made available to make this an experience you will always remember.

(08/06/2020) Views: 193 ⚡AMP
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Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

2020 marathon postponed to Oct 4. The Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon is about more than running, it is about celebrating life. This is the spirit in which the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon was conceptualized by two Oklahoma businessmen who, while on a morning run, created the outline for this inspiring event. A group of volunteer chairmen and some Memorial staff,...

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Bill Burrows a Lung cancer survivor is participating in Oklahoma Marathon

Runners come from near and far for the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon.

Officials say all 50 states will be represented, along with 11 countries.

Each runner has their own reason to compete.

For one man who beat lung cancer, the finish line never looked better.

"Before I was 50, I was like anybody else - work all the time, not eat right. I smoked for 35 years," said Bill Burrows. "I got a $79 lung scan, which I didn't think I needed `cause I was in pretty good shape. And they found cancer. And I thought, 'I`m done. That's it.'"

Three weeks later, he underwent a successful surgery and is now cancer free.

"So I'm running now for people who can't run, helping people remember what happened during the bombing. You being there shows that we care about what's going on," he said.

(04/27/2019) Views: 877 ⚡AMP
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Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

2020 marathon postponed to Oct 4. The Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon is about more than running, it is about celebrating life. This is the spirit in which the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon was conceptualized by two Oklahoma businessmen who, while on a morning run, created the outline for this inspiring event. A group of volunteer chairmen and some Memorial staff,...

more...
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76-year-old Benny Meier is blind, but it doesn’t keep him from competing in the Oklahoma City National Memorial Marathon

Benny Meier has a secret weapon. Her name is Frances Williams.

When Benny runs, Frances is his guide.  Frances uses her eyes and Benny provides the inspiration for this dynamic running duo.

"She's been a person who has been my guide, my right-hand person,” Benny says. “I just really appreciate what she's done for me to take her time to guide a blind person for all these many years."

Benny began losing his vision at age 11 and so many things have changed for him since then.  Simple things like different shades of colors.

When they run together, he has questions.  “Sometimes I ask Frances what is fuchsia? Or what is bone color or what is plum red,” Benny told us. “There are just so many colors I never saw when I was young.”

For what Frances has done for him as a running partner and friend, Benny nominated her for Pay It Forward. Frances is an art teacher at Piedmont Middle School and when we surprised her there with the 400 dollar cash reward, provided by Nova Kay of First Fidelity Bank.

Frances teared up in a smile and said in an emotional jest, “Benny what have you done?!

Benny told Frances, “I just really appreciate the time you've taken to guide this old blind guy for many years."

After a hug Frances told Benny, “You've been a best friend and we've been running together for 16 years and I hope we have another 16."

It doesn't matter where they finish in the Memorial half-marathon later this month, because in the event called friendship, Benny Meier and Frances Williams are both Gold Medal winners.

(04/11/2019) Views: 1,041 ⚡AMP
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Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

2020 marathon postponed to Oct 4. The Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon is about more than running, it is about celebrating life. This is the spirit in which the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon was conceptualized by two Oklahoma businessmen who, while on a morning run, created the outline for this inspiring event. A group of volunteer chairmen and some Memorial staff,...

more...
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Governor Kevin Stitt is inviting Oklahomans to compete against him, in new Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon relay challenge

Governor Kevin Stitt is inviting Oklahomans to compete against him and a bipartisan team in a new Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon relay challenge.

"We need to become a healthier state,” Stitt said Thursday morning at a press conference at the Oklahoma City National Memorial.

So, when he took office, Stitt and his staff started brainstorming.

"We did this kind of stuff at my old company where we would just try to engage all of our team members, employees and our coworkers. I love hanging out with my team members, and now all of Oklahoma is a team member,” he said.

That’s why Stitt’s encouraging Oklahomans to participate in the new Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon relay challenge.

"The memorial marathon, being the largest in the state and for what it stands for, I think it was a natural fit to jump in and challenge Oklahomans to get off the couch and put a team together,” said Kari Watkins, executive director for the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum.

The teams will then compete with the governor and his own bipartisan team.

To celebrate the new challenge, some state employees and local runners joined Stitt for a mile run that took off from the Survivor’s Tree.

"I am very tired. This is - I've got to start running and training. So, this was a great first step,” he said after the run.

Come April, the race is on.

"Oklahomans have - we're kind of at the bottom of some categories that we should be at the top at. So, we need to just enjoy the outdoors and just focus on working together, and we can do amazing things in our state,” Stitt said.

In early May, the winners of each division will be invited to join Stitt for a celebration at the Governor’s Mansion. They will also receive a memorial marathon T-shirt that says ‘I Beat the Governor.’

(03/13/2019) Views: 912 ⚡AMP
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Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon

2020 marathon postponed to Oct 4. The Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon is about more than running, it is about celebrating life. This is the spirit in which the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon was conceptualized by two Oklahoma businessmen who, while on a morning run, created the outline for this inspiring event. A group of volunteer chairmen and some Memorial staff,...

more...
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A grandpa and grandson are running the Oklahoma Marathon for the 14th time

Thousands will run to remember at the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon as runners reflect on the tragedy of April 19, 1995 when 168 were killed by the domestic terrorist bombing.  It's an event that has become symbolic for victims and survivors. It's also made a difference in the lives of Darrell Burnett and Benjamin Wilkins, a grandpa and grandson who are running in honor of a family member, for the 14th time. "It started when he was two. We decided that it would be a good thing and kind of like a tradition for us, and so we've tried to keep that going every year since then," said Burnett.  They say it doesn't matter how fast or hard you run, as long as the memory of those lost stays alive. "This isn't about running. You do not have to finish fast. You just have to remember them," said Wilkins. (04/27/2018) Views: 930 ⚡AMP
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The Kinder’s have been married for 61 years and are running the Oklahoma City Marathon again

Bob and Betty Kinder stuck out from the crowd of 26,000 runners who took part in the 2017 Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon. While they didn't win the race, they won the hearts of people around the country. Bob and Betty Kinder have been married for almost 61 years. Bob is 89-years-old, and Betty will be 85-years-old later this month. In 2017, the couple crossed the finish line and quickly became an Internet sensation. "She had had open heart surgery before the race and I was really worried about her," Bob Kinder said. They were photographed crossing the finish line holding hands, with Bob wearing a 'Sexy Old Fart' hat. "I had a hat that said 'Grouchy Old Fart' and I was deplaning in Denver. The stewardess said, 'Oh, you`re not grouchy, you're more sexy than grouch. And I well had to have a hat, had to have a sexy. I'm not going to argue with a stewardess, especially a nice looking one like she was," he said. "Some days he's real grouchy and I tell him to use the other hat," Betty laughed. They say they have been practicing by walking at least three times a week, and hope to make a better time this year. "We weren't last, there were people behind us," Betty said. "I want to keep walking. Make darn sure I'm still able to get up and get around," Bob said. "I wouldn't want somebody to holler, 'Breakfast is ready!' and not be able to get there." "You're only old once you start feeling old," Bob added. (04/23/2018) Views: 1,113 ⚡AMP
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