The Long Beach Marathon is one of the biggest annual races in Southern California. Over 15,000 runners will take part in the marathon, half marathon, and bike tour. With a wide variety of scenic routes and a unique Los Angeles experience, it is no wonder that this race is so popular.
The race course starts on East Shoreline Drive near the Downtown Shoreline Marina. Runners will pass through Rainbow Lagoon Park and the Cal State Long Beach campus. They will then head through the Belmont Shore and Shoreline Village neighborhoods. At the end of the marathon, they will finish on Linden Avenue.
While many people think that the Long Beach Marathon is just a weekend-long street party, it actually has a full schedule of events. Runners will also have the chance to participate in the Aquarium of the Pacific 5K, the Run Long Beach, the Health & Fitness Expo, and the Kid’s 1-mile Fun Run. This year’s festival will feature live music, a beer garden, and more.
Runners will be able to pick up their race packets on October 8th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center, Hall C. Parking will be available at the convention center, but spaces will be first-come, first-served. If you are planning to drive to the event, it’s recommended that you park in a parking lot along the route. Otherwise, your car may be towed.
Aside from the marathon and half marathon, runners will have the chance to join a 20-mile bicycle tour that will start at the same time as the marathon. In fact, it’s so popular that Boston Marathon sold out its 20-mile tour three weeks in advance. Those who are interested can contact Steve Lowery, a former editor for the Los Angeles Times and ESPN. He’ll lead the tour for the second year in a row.
Runners will be able enjoy ocean views throughout most of the route. After passing through the Shoreline Village neighborhood, runners will make their way to the historic Queen Mary. Afterward, they’ll turn onto Ocean Boulevard to return to the Shoreline Marina.
The course is flat and fast. It’s also one of the most picturesque marathon courses in the country. 80% of the course will be on the beach. That means incredible views of the Pacific. The course is so scenic, it was named one of the best in the United States.
There are also several charitable causes to support. One of the local charities is Train 4 Autism. Another is the American Diabetes Association. You can support those causes by volunteering at the Long Beach Marathon, which offers volunteers an opportunity to earn community service hours. Participants who volunteer will receive a special Race Team T-shirt and a lunch. All volunteers will also get special volunteer parking.
During the marathon, the course will pass by the Aquarium of the Pacific and the Lighthouse at Rainbow Harbor. As for the half marathon, the course will travel by the Queensbay Bridge. Eventually, the half marathoners will turn onto Ocean Boulevard for a loop back to the Shoreline Marina.