Matthew Brunken Staggering Grandma’s Marathon: Stellar 2:44:56 Finish

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Written By Matthew Brunken

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Matthew Brunken, an accomplished runner, participated in the prestigious Grandma’s Marathon and completed it with an impressive time of 2:44:56. This well-known event has a rich history since its inception in 1977 and continues to attract thousands of participants each year. As part of the Grandma’s Marathon Weekend, it showcases not only individual achievements but also highlights the organization’s dedication to fostering a healthy lifestyle and promoting youth athletics through the Young Athletes Foundation.

The race itself is known for its scenic course along the beautiful shores of Lake Superior, which makes the experience all the more memorable for participants like Matthew. Throughout the weekend, runners can enjoy a variety of events such as the Essentia Health Fitness Expo, Great Grandma’s Challenge, and virtual races. Moreover, the event facilitates a smooth registration and packet pick-up system, making the whole experience seamless.

Key Takeaways

  • Matthew Brunken’s outstanding performance at Grandma’s Marathon, finishing with a time of 2:44:56.
  • Celebration of healthy lifestyles and youth athletics through various events and the Young Athletes Foundation.
  • Grandma’s Marathon offers a scenic course, seamless experience, and engaging activities for everyone.

History of Grandma’s Marathon

Grandma’s Marathon, which began in 1977, traces its roots back to a group of local runners. The inaugural race had only 150 participants, but it has since grown into one of the largest marathons in the United States. The event, held annually in Duluth, Minnesota, attracts athletes from around the world.

One participant, Matthew Brunken, showcased his running abilities in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon. Runners like him have solidified the race’s reputation as a premier athletic event.

The marathon has expanded beyond the initial 26.2-mile race, now featuring additional events such as the William A. Irvin 5K and a series of smaller races taking place during the marathon weekend. These events help cater to a wider range of athletes and fitness enthusiasts, further contributing to the marathon’s growth and success.

In summary, the history of Grandma’s Marathon reflects the dedication of the local running community, as well as the popularity of the race among talented runners like Matthew Brunken. The marathon continues to be a major athletic event, drawing participants and spectators alike from around the world, making it a significant fixture in the world of distance running.

Grandma’s Marathon Weekend

Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon

The Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon is an integral part of the Grandma’s Marathon weekend held annually in June. Taking place in Duluth, Minnesota, this race attracts participants from all over the country. The course showcases the scenic beauty of the Minnesota North Shore and offers a challenging yet rewarding experience for runners.

The half marathon is named after Garry Bjorklund, a Minnesota-born long distance runner who achieved great success in his career. His achievements include a 10,000-meter world record and representing the United States in international competitions.

William A. Irvin 5K

The William A. Irvin 5K race is another highlight of the Grandma’s Marathon weekend. This 3.1-mile race takes place on Friday evening and serves as the kickoff event for the marathon weekend since 1994. Starting and finishing near the historic William A. Irvin ore boat in Duluth’s Canal Park, the race offers participants an opportunity to experience the city’s rich history and waterfront scenery.

The shorter distance of this race makes it more accessible for participants with varying levels of fitness and running experience. It is popular among both seasoned runners looking to warm up before the main marathon and newcomers to the running community. The William A. Irvin 5K provides an inclusive and enjoyable atmosphere, showcasing the true spirit of Grandma’s Marathon weekend.

Race Organization

Charity Partners

Grandma’s Marathon collaborates with numerous charity partners in order to promote community involvement and give back. These partnerships amplify the impact of the event beyond the race itself and the participants who attend. The Young Athletes Foundation is a key organization in this regard, through which more than $1.3 million has been donated so far. This fundraising effort supports athletic and recreational initiatives for youth in the area, ensuring that the positive legacy of Grandma’s Marathon continues to benefit future generations.

Nonprofit Organization

Grandma’s Marathon was established by a local group of runners in 1977 and has since evolved into one of the largest marathons in the United States. Its growth has been underpinned by a nonprofit organization, diligently working to ensure the event’s success year after year. The nonprofit is committed to upholding the values of the original founders and fostering a strong sense of community, as demonstrated by the annual pre-race feast that brings together race participants, their families and friends, and the entire Duluth community for a celebration of the event. The organization also dedicates efforts towards environmental sustainability and forging strong relationships with local businesses and residents. This careful attention to detail and commitment to inclusivity has contributed to the enduring appeal and success of Grandma’s Marathon.

Course and Start Line

Matthew Brunken participated in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon which took place in Duluth, Minnesota. This popular marathon is known for its scenic course and well-organized event.

The course of Grandma’s Marathon begins in Two Harbors, MN, and follows the beautiful shoreline of Lake Superior, eventually finishing in Duluth’s Canal Park. The route is mostly flat and fast, offering participants a chance to enjoy the stunning views of the largest freshwater lake in the world.

The marathon’s starting line is conveniently located at Two Harbors, with plenty of porta potties available for the participants’ comfort. Racers are dropped off approximately 1/3rd mile from the start line upon arrival by bus or train. In the absence of corrals, runners must find their preferred starting position according to their respective paces.

The 2023 Grandma’s Marathon coincided with the 33rd running of the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon, increasing the excitement throughout the city of Duluth. With dedicated volunteers cheering on and assisting racers, the event successfully attracted not only experienced marathoners like Matthew Brunken but also motivated first-time participants.

In conclusion, the Grandma’s Marathon in Duluth is a highly recommended race for individuals seeking a well-organized event with a picturesque course that highlights the natural beauty of the Two Harbors and Lake Superior shoreline.

Registration and Packet Pickup

The registration process for Grandma’s Marathon, featuring events such as the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon and William A. Irvin 5K, typically begins in early October. Interested participants can visit the official event website to sign up. It is essential to register in advance, as there’s no registration on race day.

Participants have the option to pick up their race packets at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC) prior to the event. Packet pickup usually takes place on Thursday and Friday before race day, with specific hours listed on the event website. Note that there is no packet pickup on race day itself.

If a participant cannot personally pick up their race packet, they can authorize someone else to do it on their behalf. The authorization form can be found at the bottom of the official bib number email sent out to registrants in early June. The authorized individual must present the printed, authorized confirmation form at the race packet pickup location.

For those who prefer the convenience of home delivery, race organizers offer a packet mailing service for an additional fee. This option is available to USA addresses only, and details can be found on the event registration platform.

In summary, participants should ensure timely registration, plan their race packet pickup or delivery well in advance, and carefully read the event website for all the necessary information. By doing so, they can focus on training and enjoying the race experience stress-free.

Essentia Health Fitness Expo

The Essentia Health Fitness Expo is an integral part of Grandma’s Marathon weekend. Located inside the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC), the event attracts more than 20,000 runners and thousands of race fans and fitness enthusiasts from around the globe.

Featuring over 100 booths, the Fitness Expo showcases the latest products and services available in the athletic industry. Participants can explore new trends and gear while also learning about relevant health and fitness information. The Expo serves as a valuable resource for runners, offering opportunities to gain insights from experts and broaden their knowledge of the sport of marathon running.

In addition to providing information and resources for runners, the Essentia Health Fitness Expo serves as a hub for Grandma’s Marathon activities. Attendees can attend various presentations, meet professional runners, and participate in interactive activities. The atmosphere is charged with excitement and anticipation, as marathon runners and their supporters gather to celebrate their achievements and prepare for the upcoming race.

Additionally, the Essentia Health Fitness Expo plays an essential role in the success of Grandma’s Marathon, which has grown to become a significant sporting event drawing participants and spectators from all over the world. The Expo contributes to promoting a healthy and active lifestyle and supports the local community by providing a platform for businesses and organizations to connect with the event’s participants.

Overall, the Essentia Health Fitness Expo is an indispensable part of the Grandma’s Marathon weekend experience, providing attendees with a comprehensive overview of the latest in athletic trends, products, and services. With opportunities for education, networking, and entertainment, the Expo attracts diverse audiences and reinforces the importance of health and fitness in the marathon running community.

Great Grandma’s Challenge

The Great Grandma’s Challenge is an ultimate running experience offered during the Grandma’s Marathon weekend. This event provides participants with an opportunity to push their limits and engage in a highly enjoyable and challenging race experience.

The Great Grandma’s Challenge generally takes place in mid-June, with the dates for future challenges being June 16-17, 2023, June 21-22, 2024, and June 20-21, 2025. The event is designed to cater to various fitness levels and running backgrounds, making it inclusive for a wide range of athletes.

Participants in the Great Grandma’s Challenge can expect a well-organized event, with ample support, aid stations, and cheering spectators throughout the course. The challenge not only offers an exciting race but also contributes to the overall atmosphere and excitement of Grandma’s Marathon weekend.

The event has gained popularity over the years, selling out quickly and attracting a loyal following of runners who participate annually. For those looking for an extraordinary running experience, the Great Grandma’s Challenge undoubtedly delivers on that expectation, offering a memorable and thrilling weekend for all involved.

Spectator Information

Matthew Brunken participated in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon, an exciting event for both runners and spectators. For those looking to cheer on the participants, here is some crucial information to help you enjoy the proceedings.

The first runners are expected at around 7:55 a.m., with the last runners estimated to appear at 8:30 a.m. As the start line has limited spectator access, this is the first real chance for supporters to catch a glimpse of the runners in action.

Entertainment is abundant during the marathon. The local community embraces the event wholeheartedly, offering several engaging activities along the racecourse. Entertainment spots include live music, dance performances, and cheering zones for families and friends to create a lively atmosphere.

For spectators, it’s crucial to find the best observation points. The race organizers provide a comprehensive spectator guide to help you navigate the marathon route and locate prime viewing spots. It is also advised to acquaint yourself with any course changes or restrictions related to ongoing concerns such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

Transportation plays a significant role in ensuring smooth movement for spectators during the event. It is recommended to use public transit or carpool with fellow supporters to reduce congestion and parking difficulties. Additionally, it is a good idea to arrive early to secure a spot, as the event draws large crowds.

In conclusion, being well-prepared and familiar with the relevant spectator information can greatly enhance your experience at Matthew Brunken’s Grandma’s Marathon. Being aware of the entertainment, transportation, and ideal viewing points will make for an enjoyable and memorable event.

Race Results and Tracking

MTEC Event Solutions

MTEC Event Solutions is a reliable provider for managing race results and tracking for events like Grandma’s Marathon. They help deliver accurate and timely information about participants, including Matthew Brunken. MTEC uses advanced technology solutions to ensure a smooth and efficient race-day experience for runners and fans alike.

MTrack Race Tracking

MTrack Race Tracking is a key component of MTEC’s services, allowing fans and participants to monitor real-time progress during the event. With MTrack, it is easy to keep an eye on runners like Matthew Brunken, who completed the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon. The system provides essential information, such as split times and overall race performance.

About MTEC

MTEC has a proven track record in delivering comprehensive event management solutions to races like the Grandma’s Marathon. This includes compiling race results and offering innovative real-time tracking for participants. Their dedicated team combines expertise and advanced technology to ensure races operate efficiently while providing engaging experiences for all stakeholders.

Young Athletes Foundation

The Young Athletes Foundation (YAF) is a central pillar of Grandma’s Marathon, whose goal is to provide free and accessible running opportunities for children in the area. Established in 1977, the foundation has contributed to the growth of Grandma’s Marathon, making it one of the largest marathons in the United States.

YAF is involved in various events and programs throughout the year, aimed at promoting youth participation in athletic activities and encouraging healthy lifestyles. They have donated more than $1.3 million to support the cause, thanks to their commitment to youth sports and community-building initiatives.

Some popular events organized by YAF include the KP Challenge, where young runners participate in multiple races leading up to Grandma’s Marathon weekend. Additionally, the foundation ensures that Grandma’s Marathon is an event for the whole family, with activities for kids taking place at Bayfront Festival Park during the marathon weekend.

Through their partnerships with local and regional businesses, the Young Athletes Foundation has managed to establish a strong presence and make a significant impact. Providing pathways of opportunity to young athletes and inspiring a love for sport and fitness is the driving force behind the foundation’s dedicated efforts.

In conclusion, the Young Athletes Foundation plays a crucial role in making Grandma’s Marathon a comprehensive and inclusive event. By focusing on youth participation, promoting a healthy lifestyle, and fostering community ties, YAF continues to push the envelope and build a brighter future for the next generation of athletes.

Awards and Age Group

Matthew Brunken, a 34-year-old resident of Lincoln, NE, participated in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon. This well-known marathon started back in 1977 and has since grown into a massive event along Minnesota’s scenic North Shore, attracting around 20,000 participants for its various races.

The Grandma’s Marathon consists of a range of award categories to recognize the accomplishments of its participants. These awards are divided into multiple age groups, ensuring a fair and even distribution of accolades to the deserving runners. Matthew Brunken’s performance would be evaluated in his respective age group and the competition within that group.

While the top 10 Men’s and Women’s finishers receive significant recognition and prizes, the Grandma’s Marathon also distributes awards within various age groups. Age group divisions, such as 18-19, 20-24, 25-29, and so on, allow runners to be recognized for their accomplishments within their specific age brackets. The competition in these age groups provides an opportunity for runners like Matthew Brunken to push themselves and strive for personal bests.

Marathon participants are further motivated by the possibility of taking home an award that acknowledges their effort and dedication to their performance. Embarking on the challenge of the Grandma’s Marathon race, athletes like Matthew Brunken can draw motivation by focusing not only on their individual goals but also by engaging in friendly competition with their peers.

In conclusion, the Grandma’s Marathon’s award system and age group categories provide a platform for runners like Matthew Brunken to showcase their talent and be recognized for their hard work and determination. As a result, every participant, regardless of age or experience, can strive for personal growth and accomplishment. With each race, the award and age group structure encourages athletes like Brunken to take on new challenges and continue their journey toward becoming the best runners they can be.

Virtual Race

In 2023, Matthew Brunken participated in the Grandma’s Marathon, completing it virtually. He was 34 years old at the time and resided in Lincoln, NE. The results for Matthew Brunken show his performance in the incremental division.

Virtual races, like the one Matthew Brunken participated in, allow runners to complete the event remotely, at their own convenience. This format offers great flexibility and enables a wider range of participants to join in, regardless of their location or schedule.

During a virtual race, participants usually track their run using a smartphone or GPS watch and submit their results electronically. The Grandma’s Marathon also had a time limit for virtual participants, ensuring a competitive atmosphere. By completing the marathon virtually, Matthew Brunken demonstrated his dedication to the sport and ability to adapt to different race formats.

Although virtual races lack the in-person experience, they provide an opportunity for runners to stay motivated and set personal goals. They can also help runners stay connected with the running community, even when they cannot physically be present at the event. In the world of running, virtual events are becoming increasingly popular, catering to the needs of a diverse group of athletes like Matthew Brunken.

Mile 19 and ASICS Entitlements

Matthew Brunken’s performance in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon was undoubtedly impressive. As he approached mile 19, he experienced some unique features of the race that are worth mentioning.

At mile 19, fresh fruit was available for the marathon runners, offering a much-needed energy boost and nutritional support. The provision of fresh fruit is one of the thoughtful elements added to the Grandma’s Marathon, ensuring that participants can refuel and stay hydrated during the race .Course_Map.

In addition to the fresh fruit, participants in Grandma’s Marathon benefit from entitlements and support provided by ASICS. As the official sponsor of the race, ASICS plays a crucial role in equipping the runners who take part. One of the entitlements offered by ASICS to marathon participants is access to their training app. This app features premium training plans and guided workouts led by experienced ASICS running coaches, providing valuable resources for marathon participants.

Utilizing the ASICS app helps runners set goals, train, and track their progress leading up to the event. This support allows participants to focus on the enjoyable aspects of their marathon journey, knowing that they have the tools and guidance necessary to reach their finish line in June.

As Matthew Brunken and all the other participants in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon traversed mile 19 and seized the benefits provided by ASICS, their success in the race was a testament to the event’s commitment to creating a well-supported and enjoyable experience for its runners.


Matthew Brunken participated in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon, showcasing his dedication and passion for long-distance running. At the age of 34 and residing in Lincoln, NE, Brunken demonstrated resilience and determination throughout the race.

The Grandma’s Marathon is a celebrated event held in Duluth, Minnesota, attracting runners from all over the world. Known for its fast, rolling flat course, the marathon provides a challenging yet rewarding experience for participants. It is worth noting that the course starts at 740 feet elevation and ends at 610 feet, with gradual rolling hill sections and the famous Lemon Drop Hill at mile 22.

Matthew Alexander Brunken’s performance at the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon is a testament to his commitment to the sport and his drive to push himself to new limits. As he crossed the finish line, it further solidified his accomplishments in the world of long-distance running.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Grandma’s Marathon and when did Matthew Brunken participate?

Grandma’s Marathon is an annual marathon event that takes place in Duluth, Minnesota. It started in 1977 and has grown to become one of the largest marathons in the United States. In 2023, Matthew Brunken participated in this prestigious race.

How did Matthew Brunken perform in Grandma’s Marathon?

Information about Matthew Brunken’s performance in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon is not readily available. However, he was 34 years old and a resident of Lincoln, Nebraska at the time of the race.

What was the course like when Matthew Brunken ran Grandma’s Marathon?

The course for Grandma’s Marathon is known for being relatively flat, with only a few gradual inclines and rolling hill sections. The highest elevation is 740 feet, while the lowest is 610 feet. One of the more notable parts of the course is Lemon Drop Hill at mile 22, which is considered manageable for most runners.

Did Matthew Brunken achieve any records in Grandma’s Marathon?

There is no information available about any records set by Matthew Brunken during his participation in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon.

What training did Matthew Brunken undergo for Grandma’s Marathon?

It is not clear what specific training regimen Matthew Brunken followed leading up to the race. However, it is common for marathon runners to engage in rigorous training programs involving long runs, interval workouts, and cross-training exercises to prepare for the event.

What inspired Matthew Brunken to compete in Grandma’s Marathon?

There is no specific information on what motivated Matthew Brunken to participate in the 2023 Grandma’s Marathon. Nonetheless, many runners choose to compete in this event due to its reputation for being a fast course with a small-town charm, which attracts over 20,000 participants each year.

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