More than 25,000 runners are expected at this year’s San Francisco Marathon, a record for the annual race now in its 37th year. The race, which is also a Boston Marathon qualifier and point of pride for the Bay Area running community, has achieved a record level of early sign-ups. The full marathon and half marathons have all been sold out. Race organizers anticipate that the 5k will sell out on the day of the race. Thousands more are expected to watch as spectators and supporters. It is the only full and double marathon (52.4 miles) in the city.
The scenic race will start at the Ferry Building, go along the Embarcadero, run through the Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park, and will finish in front of the Cupid’s Arrow statue at the Embarcadero. In the Mission District, 16th Street between Potrero Avenue and Guerrero Street will be closed off to accommodate the flood of runners pouring into city streets during race day on Sunday, July 27. Guerrero Street between 13th and 16th streets will also be closed to traffic.
For the race, organizers have worked to bring new features to streamline and improve the race day experience. According to Endurance Sportswire, new events include:
- EXCLUSIVE RACE DAY APP: In addition to training events and meet-ups, Pebble launched both a mobile and Pebble app—tailored specifically for registered marathon participants and fans of this year’s San Francisco Marathon. The app acts as a wrist-top tracker and coach, bringing specific course information and encouragement.
- FIRST MAJOR RACE WITH FREE PHOTOS FOR RUNNERS: Gameface Media, the largest provider of free sporting event photos in the United States, will provide participants with free race photos. A skilled team of professional photographers will shoot memorable images that runners can easily download and share through all major social media platforms within days of crossing the finish line.
- STEPS TO BE PLASTIC-FREE: TSFM is working with a variety of partners to help eliminate the use of plastic bottles during the event. Boxed Water is Better will be served to participants, offering a more sustainable solution and lower carbon footprint than plastic. The limited-edition, fully compostable container is made with 76 percent renewable resources. In addition, WaterMonster™ tanks will be stationed throughout the course for quick access to drinking water. One tank holds 125 gallons of water, the equivalent of 1,000 16-ounce water bottles.
- PARKING FINDER: With GottaPark, drivers can view different parking options, compare pricing and proximity and pre-pay for a reserved spot. Garage operators will have designated spots reserved for users. For major events like The San Francisco Marathon, drivers from the East Bay and Peninsula can select a spot close to freeway off-ramps in SOMA, while drivers coming from other parts of the city or from Marin can find garages easily accessible from major thoroughfares.
- #RunWithRonnie: The San Francisco Marathon is partnering with Ronnie Goodman, a local runner and artist who is currently homeless, to raise money for Hospitality House and support programs such as the Community Arts Program. Ronnie is creating a custom art piece that will be raffled off with proceeds benefitting Hospitality House. Donations are being accepted directly on the Hospitality House website and through the runner registration form on TSFM’s website. Follow #RunwithRonnie on Twitter for updates.
It is also the only marathon in the country with a “HOGS security detail” equipped with leather, helmets and more than 500 Harley Davidson motorcyclists to help with traffic flow and security. For more information about the full schedule, course details and entertainment, visit their website.