The 2020 Monterey Bay Half Marathon is Now a Virtual Event
28 Jul, 2020
Monterey Bay Half Marathon organizers announced Wednesday that the 2020 race, originally scheduled for Saturday November 14th, will now be a virtual event. The Big Sur Marathon Foundation’s governance board made this difficult decision to cancel the in-person road races as they continued to monitor updates on large events from county, state, federal, and international public safety and health agencies during the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Our highest priority is always the wellbeing of our participants, volunteers, spectators, and our residents. As a mass participation event, we feel that planning any race this year is not the right thing for our community,” said Doug Thurston, Race Director.
The 2020 Big Sur Marathon and related events, originally postponed from their late April date to November 15th, have also been cancelled.
Organizers delayed opening registration for the Monterey Bay Half Marathon in order to closely monitor the fluid nature of the COVID-19 outbreak. They are now planning to launch registration for the virtual Monterey Bay Half Marathon this summer.
“While we are deeply saddened to cancel the in-person race, we are also excited about hosting a safe and unique virtual experience for our runners this year,” Thurston said.
The Big Sur Marathon Foundation recently partnered with haku as their exclusive registration partner and plan to utilize the platform to provide an engaging digital experience for participants. Organizers say they are still working out the details of what the virtual race will look like, but participants can expect to take part in digital activations, redeem sponsor offerings, and receive a participant shirt and medal upon completing the 13.1-mile virtual event in their neighborhood.
Entry fees from this virtual event will help support the nonprofit Big Sur Marathon Foundation that typically donates nearly $400,000 a year to over 100 other Monterey County-based nonprofits. The Foundation has had to weather five race cancellations in the last four years due to circumstances beyond its control, including the cancellation of the 2018 Monterey Bay Half Marathon due to wildfire smoke. All entrants from the 2018 Monterey Bay Half Marathon who chose to defer to 2020 will be given the option to switch their deferral to 2021 or 2022. Those entrants should expect to receive additional direct communication from race organizers regarding registering their choice option.
About the Big Sur Marathon Foundation - The Big Sur Marathon Foundation is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to create beautiful running events that promote health and benefit the community. Under the brand are three individual race weekends:Big Sur International Marathon in April,Run in the Name of Love 5K and 2K in June, and theMonterey Bay Half Marathon, 5K and 3K in November. In addition, the Foundation oversees the award-winningJUST RUN® youth fitness program.www.bsim.org