A win at the Chicago Marathon is as close to the pinnacle of the running world as an athlete can get. Making it to the finish line on race day is an running accomplishment very few in the world can add to their resume. On Sunday, Oct. 7, runners from over 100 countries will take part in one of the globe’s most coveted marathons at Grant Park in Chicago, Illinois.
The 2019 event will be the 42nd anniversary of the marathon’s existence, a race which has been classified as one of the six World Marathon Majors. Over 40,000 of the world’s elite runners will take on a journey that winds through 29 different neighborhoods of the infamous urban city, backed by nearly 2 million cheering spectators.
The loop course, which weaves through the vibrant neighborhoods of Lakeview, Greektown, Little Italy, Pilsen, Chinatown and Bronzeville equally represent the city’s global diversity as much as the participants themselves. Additionally, the strategically mapped out trek makes the Chicago Marathon one of the most spectator-friendly races in the world. Because of the city’s convenient public transportation system, friends and families can cheer on their athletes at nearly any location on the course.
Bank of America is the official sponsor of the Chicago Marathon, but event organizers welcome local, national and global charities and humanitarian organizations for further fund raising.
“Celebrate the sport of running in one of the most historic American cities, where people of all cultures come together in an effort to highlight world diversity.”
Cheering on your favorite runners can be done from the sidelines or from home. The Bank of America Chicago Marathon app provides those who aren’t able to make it to the event location with easy-to-use tracking features and live leaderboard updates for optimal viewing pleasure from anywhere in the world.
However, viewing anything live is the best way to experience an event. Although spectators are not allowed to have access to the race start and finish line, plenty of viewing areas are available throughout the course. The closest view of the finish line is located at the Cheer Zone on Michigan Avenue and Roosevelt Road.
Other prime areas include anywhere on State Street, between Grand Avenue and Jackson Boulevard. Fully prepare for the race by checking out the marathon’s 5 must see landmarks along the route.
It shouldn’t be surprising that the day of the race will see dozens of street closures and plenty of traffic jams around the city. Driving a car for the event should really be your last option of transportation.
Your best bet is to take advantage of Chicago Transit Authority’s bus and rail service. The CTA will deploy more trains for longer rides on certain lines during the event.
As a spectator, biking around the course is a great way to get different views of the athletes. Plan ahead and make sure to stake out a spot early if you are looking to stay in one area.
The city of Chicago offers a wide array of housing options for those looking to attend the event. The Best Western in Grant Park is known to have cheaper fares while the Kimpton Gray offers a luxurious lodging experience capped off by a rooftop lounge and full-service spa. It’s safe to say there is a place for everyone.
Airbnb and hostel options are great alternatives if traveling in a group on the cheap. Head to the map below for the best deals in Chicago and book early before they go.
The city of Chicago is a bustling town in the middle of the United States. It offers millions of places to visit and things to do over a broad spectrum of top-notch restaurants, enticing nightlife and historic museums.
Check out baseball’s most storied ballpark at Wrigley Field by day and enjoy a broadway show by night at the Chicago Theatre.
With plenty of attractions in between, there is no shortage of entertaining opportunities. Be sure to check out the city’s list of things to do before planning your early October trip for the Chicago Marathon.
The 2019 marathon will take place on Sunday, October 13, 2019.
Book your stay nearby Chicago Marathon 2019 from the map, displaying all the available Airbnbs and hotels nearby, at the lowest prices.
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