October 12, 2014 marks the 37th anniversary of the Chicago Marathon. It is considered one of the six World Marathon Majors as well as Boston, New York, Berlin, London and Tokyo. The first race held in Chicago was on September 25, 1977 under the original name Mayor Daley Marathon with 4,200 participants. Now the marathon has around 45,000 runners, but only participants clocking in less than 6.5 hours are timed. In 2008, the marathon’s name was changed from LaSalle Bank to Bank of America. That year 37,455 runners completed the race giving it the highest completion at that time. The men’s course record is by Dennis Kimetto with 2:03:45 in 2013 and the women’s is by Paula Radcliffe with 2:17:18 in 2002.
The marathon begins at Grant Park and runs through 29 of the Chicago’s neighborhoods. The race is sectioned into three parts the North, West and South passing Chicago’s main stadiums such as Wrigley Field, United Center and US Cellular Field. There will be 20 aid stations and medical staff every 1-3 miles with ambulances throughout the course in case of emergency.
Participants train for a very long time to make sure they are qualified for this race since it is 26.2 miles. Not only are they dedicated to finish they also raise money for charities such as St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, American Heart Association, Out of the Darkness and The Anti-Cruelty Society. If you wish to donate to a great cause click here
to view all the charities for the marathon.
Also, if you want to attend the race but not exactly sure where to go here is the marathon’s course map with cheering zone information. ParkJockey has parking locations all over the city so once you figure out where you want to view the race type the address into the search bar on the home page and the closest parking locations will appear.
Good luck to everyone participating in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Hope everyone has a great and safe time! -ParkJockey