The registration for The 2013 Grandad Half Marathon will open on the 1st of November!

As you can see from the title, the registration for next year’s Grandad half marathon will begin on the 1st of November, 2012. We advise you to keep checking our page, for additional information.

On the 15th of May 2012, we will present charities donation checks from the Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival

As most of you know, the 4th annual Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival was between the 4th and 6th of May, 2012. The event managed to raise money for a few local charities. These are the Youth Enrichment Association, Special Recreation of La Crosse and the St. Clare Health Mission. On the 15th of May 2013, the Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival is going to present the three beneficiaries their donation checks. If you wish to attend, you can do so at the Myrick Park Main Shelter at 6:00 pm.

During the three-day celebration, we were happy to welcome both visitors across the country and residents. There were approximate 4k total participants who attended the weekend’s events. These included a half marathon as well as a relay, 5,000 run/walk, bike tour, youth races, cycling criterium and cycling time trial.

This celebration allowed the residents of the area as well as the visitors to fully enjoy aerobic and active outdoor events amongst the completely breathtaking natural beauty of the Mississippi River Valley. There is no need to mention that there was a vast range of activities which start from a 5km walk and go to a full marathon. This offered both novice athletes and experienced ones to enjoy the day regardless of their fitness level and age. Our newest event was a bike tour.

Everything you need to know about the Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival

The Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival began in January 2008. The goal was to create an annual event which celebrates the commitment of La Crosse as well as the nearby communities to become the healthiest city in America. The partners in this festival include Festival Foods, the City of La Crosse as well as Ho-Chunk Nation. Of course, there are many other sponsors. The 4th annual Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival will take place between the 3rd and 5th of May 2013.

aerobic exercise There are a series of aerobic events in the festival, which provide an opportunity to the locals to demonstrate their participation and fitness in a healthy and active lifestyle. Back in 2009, the events were a half marathon, a marathon, a 5k walk and 5k run, races for children as well as the cycling criterium. Since there was such a wide variety of events, there were a lot of people of various ages and fitness levels who participated.

If you are an area resident, who wants to take part in the long-distance running events, but you do not have any experience in running, there is a Training Program you can follow in the LFF website. The Festival is mainly funded by corporate sponsors as well as the entry fees that participants pay in the competitive sports. The income beyond these costs is donated to the three beneficiaries we mentioned above.

Frequently Asked Questions


When will the future festivals take place?

The St. Claire Mission Half-Marathon, The La Crosse Marathon and the Cycling Criterium will all be held during the first Sunday of May. The YEA Youth Races, the Cycling Time Trial, The Three Rivers 5K Run/Walk, and Coulee Region Bike Tour will take place on the Saturday before that.

Is there a limit to runners in the races?

Well, there is a combined cap for both of the marathons of a total of 3k participants. There is no limit for the rest of the events.

Are the marathons open for walkers and what are the time limits for the races?

Even though, neither the half-marathon nor the marathon have a walking division, if you are a walker, you will be able to register for the event. The people who walk are not distinguished from those who run and will receive the same timing chips as well as commemorative medals and finisher’s t-shirts. The time limit for the half-marathon is 4 hours, with an average pace of 18 mins and 27 seconds per mile. The time limit for the marathon is 6.5 hours with an average of 14 minutes and 52 secs per mile.

Are smartphones, headphones, MP3 players or iPods allowed on the course?

For safety reasons, we discourage the runners from using devices of any type during the race. However, if you want to bring one with you, please keep the volume low so you can hear the traffic, comments from the nearby runners and the instructions from course marshals and police officers.

Can I attend the race on a bike?

Unfortunately, no. This is for the safety of the participants and spectators. The other things that are not allowed are animals, skateboards and roller blades.

Is it possible to switch from one race to another?

This is allowed before the closing of the registration on the 30th of April with a fee of $10 fee as well as a payment of the difference if there is one.

Why are the entry fees different for 5K Walk and the 5K Run?

This is because the 5k run is a timed and competitive event, so the participants will have to wear a timing chip if they want to be eligible for age-group rewards. The extra costs provide these items and are the reason for the price difference.

Will you provide a lost and found box?

Yes. On Saturday, the box will be located in Riverside Park, at the Registration tent near the band shell. The next day, it will be located close to the runners’ gear pickup. After the weekend, you will be able to find your things in the Parks and Recreation Department, which will keep them for two weeks. If you discard any clothes during the race, you will not be able to find them at lost and found, as they will be donated to charity.

Are the half marathon and the marathon courses hilly?

Both of them are fairly flat. They cross the Cass Street Bridge which spans the Mississippi River. The half marathon has a couple of viaducts as well as several smaller hills. The full marathon has 2 viaducts, a few smaller hills and a moderate hill with an approximate length of a mile.

La Crosse Marathon

La Crosse Marathon full

St. Claire Health Mission Half Marathon

St. Claire Health Mission Half Marathon half


When will the registration start?

You will be able to register on the 1st of October, 2011.

When will the registration end?

online registration The online registration will close at 11:59 pm on the 30th of April, 2012. There is going to be a limited registration for the 5k walk and the 5krun, as well as the bike tour during Saturday morning in the Riverside Park between 7, am and 9 am. The youth races will have registration at 11 am on Saturday. If you want to register for the cycling time trial, you should do so at the Alpine Inn between 4:30 pm and 5:30 pm. Moreover, the registration for the events which will be held on Sunday will be available at the Packet Pickup during Friday evening between 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm as well as Saturday between 11:00 am and 6:00 pm.

If I am pregnant, injured or out of town, will I be able to get a refund or transfer the entry to somebody else?

The entry fees are non-refundable, and the entries cannot be transferred. This means that once you register as a competitor, you will not be able to receive a refund if you are not able to attend and you will not be able to give your number to another person.

What happens to my registration fee?

The fees help us pay the permits, personnel and supplies for the events. The Festival is a non-profit organization. If we receive profit above the necessary costs, we will donate it to the charities mentioned above.

Prizes and Awards

Will there be awards for the top finishers in the running events?

Yes, the first 3 male and female finishers in the 5k run, the full marathon, half marathon and the marathon relay are going to receive special trophies or awards based on their time.

What type of an award will I get if I place in my age group?

You will get a finisher medal. The age group awards for the half and full marathon are going to get merchandise items instead of trophies or medals that most of the runners will find useful.

How many awards are there in the age groups?

The awards will be given to the top 3 finishers in every age group of the 5k Run and marathons based on their time.

Will there be cash awards for the top competitors?

No, since we have a limited budget, we will not be able to reward them with money. But we are in touch with some friends from the csgo gambling sites community (interesting, we know) and maybe something will follow. To be announced...

When will the reward ceremonies take place?

The 5k run awards will be held on Saturday at 11:00 am at the band shell. The Half Marathon award ceremony will be at 10:00 am, and the full marathon will be at 12:00 pm in Myrick Park.

Packet Pick-Up

When will the packet pickup be?

The packet pick-up for the marathon and the half-marathon will take place on the 4th of May between 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm as well as on the next day between 11:00 pm and 6:00 pm at Riverside Park.

The packet pickup for the 5k walk and the 5k run are going to take place on the 4th of May between 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm at Riverside Park in downtown La Crosse. The packets for the 5k events can also be picked up during the race date close to the start like in Riverside Park between 7:00 am and 9:00 am.

What do I have to bring with me to pick up the packet?

Each participant in the half marathon, full marathon and the 5k run have to bring a photo ID to take his or hers package. There is no need to bring an ID for the 5k Walk.

Is it possible to authorize another person to pick up my packet?

There is no race day packet pick-up for the half marathon and full marathon. Thus, if you cannot get your packet before the contest day, you can ask a friend to pick it up for you. Just download this Authorization Form. You will have to fill it in as well as sign it. The authorized person will have to present the form and his or her ID.

Is there a place where I can park in the packet pick-up?

Yes, near Riverside Park, or 100 block of State St.

Chip Timing

Will I have to buy a timing chip?

No, one of those will already be provided in your race packet.

How to make sure that I have the correct chip?

When you claim your packet during the packet pick-up, it will be your responsibility to confirm your personal details on the label. There will be volunteers, who will assist you if there are necessary changes that have to be made.

Which will count in determining my place the chip time or the gun time?

The gun time is the period between the start of the race until you cross the finish timing mats. It will be used to determine the overall place winners for men and women. The chip time is the period from when you cross the starting line mats until you cross the finish timing mats. This will be used to determine the age group winners at the festival.

Will the 5K Walk use chip timing?

The 5K Walk is a non-competitive fitness event and the times will neither be reported or recorded for the event. If a Walker wants to know their time, there will be a large finishing clock which will display the elapsed time at the finish line.

Sweat Check

Will there be a place to drop sweat bags to the start line?

Yes, there are going to be trucks near both of the marathons’ starting lines to check-in your bags. We advise you to see the detailed area map in your guide for the exact locations. The retrieval area will be available near the finish line. Even though the 5k walk and the 5k run start and finish at the same place, there will be a secure area which will be available to check in your clothes if you wish to do so.

What will happen to my bag if I forget to claim it after the race ends?

The sweat bag pickup for both of the marathons will close at 2:30 pm on the day of the race and every bag has to be picked up before that. The Festival Foods La Crosse Fitness Festival will not take any responsibility for the sweat bags that are not picked up until then. However, the remaining bags will be picked up at the La Crosse City Hall in the Parks & Recreation Department for two weeks after the end of the race. After this period, whatever is remaining will be either donated to charity or discarded.


Where can I park for the events that take place in Riverside Park?

parking signThere is parking available on both street sides and public lots in downtown La Crosse. There is a very convenient parking ramp, which is located on the corner of State Streets and 3rd and a second at Jay Streets and 3rd.

Where can I park for the half and full marathons?

The participants will be able to park at any of the public ramps and lots as well as the street sides in La Crosse. The parking will be available at commuter lots on the campus, which is close to the finish line. There will also be limited parking which will be available in Pettibone Park. However, you should note that the vehicle access will be closed at 6:30 am.

Where are the shuttles for the half and full marathons?

The shuttle buses to the starting line will be available at the intersection of State Street and 3rd. Moreover, from the finish are at Mitchell Hall on the UW-La Crosse campus. The buses will start running at 5:15 am and will leave whenever they are full. The last bus will leave at 6:15 am. and from downtown at 6:20 am. Alternatively, you will be able to park in the parking lot in downtown La Crosse and walk to the Cass St. Bridge to the start line. There will be very limited parking close to the outset on the morning of the race. The runners will be shuttled back from the finish area to the starting line and will stop on State Streets and 3rd on the way. The shuttle will run between 9:30 am and will continuing until 3:00 pm.

If you have additional questions please contact us.