The Results Are In – Grand Forks Marathon 2020 is Virtual-Only

The Grand Forks Marathon, a staple in the community for fall road racing events has cancelled the live, in-person portion of the event and will proceed with a virtual option only in 2020.

Race Director, Rachel Hellyer said, “After much research, discussion, and thoughtful consideration, the Grand Forks Marathon committee has determined that the health and safety of our participants, volunteers and others is not something we are willing to risk in order to hold an in-person event in 2020. With the support of our wonderful presenting sponsors, Altru Health System, Hugo’s Family Marketplace, and the Grand Forks Convention & Visitors Bureau, and race title sponsors including Stray Media Group, Alerus, Cirrus Aircraft, and Crary Real Estate, all efforts will be focused on providing runners with the best possible experience, virtually.”

Rachel continues, “Since its start in 2012, the Grand Forks Marathon’s mission has been to support active, healthy lifestyles to enhance the quality of life in the Grand Cities, with a special focus on area youth. This is just one reason our decision to cancel the in-person event was so hard to finalize, because we feel a healthy lifestyle includes outdoor activity and events, but in the current climate of COVID, schools starting and the potential unknowns we ultimately couldn’t risk the health of our event volunteers and participants.”

Rachel said, “It’s been an unprecedented and unpredictable year for all events. We have done our best to weigh all the options and consider every side in coming to our final plan for 2020. We look forward to the next live event and are going to focus on this as an opportunity to make our next event in 2021 even better.”

Registered runners have four options in moving forward:

  1. Transfer to a virtual race:

To participate virtually, you do not need to do anything – your entry will be converted to virtual on August 31. Participants will have September 1-30 to complete their run – learn more.

You can send screenshots from your phone, link to Strava or Garmin Connect, etc. to log your run and send in your time. You will receive great swag and a medal by mail. There may be some delays in getting the swag to our Canadian friends, but we will try our best to get it to you quickly.


  1. Defer to 2021:

This option will confirm your registration for the 2021 Marathon Weekend. To do so, login to your Race Roster account and select a transfer to the race category called “Defer to 2021” by September 15. There will be no fee if you transfer by August 31, please contact if you have issues.


  1. Donate your entry:

The Grand Forks Marathon is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. If you choose this option, your registration fee will be donated to local youth charities we support like BIO Girls, Grand Forks YMCA, Grand Forks Parks & Recreation, and more. You may also be able to claim your registration fee as a donation on your income tax. If you wish to donate your entry, please either send an email to or login to Race Roster and transfer your entry to the race category “Donate 2020 Entry” by September 15.


  1. Receive a refund:

Those who wish to receive a refund should email the race director at by August 31, 2020. Refunds, minus processing fees, will be processed by September 30, 2020.


To learn more and register for a virtual race, visit