Race Participant Information

The Harrisburg YMCA Race Series is presented by
Sunday, November 14th 
City Island, Harrisburg, PA
Thank you for being a part of the 2021 Enders Insurance Harrisburg Marathon, presented by Donegal Insurance Group!
Please read through this email for important information about the event.
You may receive additional Marathon updates as we get closer to race day!
We appreciate your participation sincerely. This race is organized by and supports the East Shore YMCA in downtown Harrisburg. Your participation in this event and support for the YMCA mission is greatly appreciated. 
If you are feeling sick or ill in the days leading up to the race, play it safe and stay home! Please reply to this email if that is the case and we will work with you on options for future participation. This is not something we normally do but we want to be extra cautious this year for the safety of all our participants and volunteers!
It is our desire that every participant has a wonderful experience and is equipped with all necessary information for race day. This is why race staff made this pre-race email as comprehensive as possible. If you have additional questions that cannot be answered within the contents of this email, please refer to the guidelines below!
Phone Calls: Due to extensive time out of the office in the days prior to the race getting the course and other things ready, we kindly request no phone calls after Wednesday, November 10th. We will not be able to return phone calls after this time. 
Emails: If you have any questions, please hit reply to this email and let us know as soon as possible! Any email submissions after Thursday, November 11th may not be returned in a timely manner.
Following the race: Please note that our race staff is mostly out of the office the Monday after the race getting things wrapped up, so any communication may not be returned in a timely manner. We will get back to you as soon as possible!
The deadline to defer your entry is Tuesday, November 9th, at 11:59 pm. No deferrals will be accepted after this date. We understand things come up, so we have this option to defer the week of the race.
Click here for instructions on how to defer your entry.
The deferral fee is $20. 
Anyone who defers will receive an email in 2022 with a code to register for the 2022 Harrisburg Marathon. 
1. FLEET FEET MECHANICSBURG (Silver Spring Square, 6416 Carlisle Pike #700, Mechanicsburg, PA 17050)
  • Thursday, November 11th - 10am-7pm
  • Friday, November 12th - 10am-6pm
  • *Please note that pick up Friday, November 12th at Fleet Feet ends at 6:00 PM
Fleet Feet Mechanicsburg is offering the following specials for anyone who picks up at the store on Thursday the 11th or Friday the 12th!
•  Buy 3 get one free socks
•  Buy 3 get one free nutrition
  • 8:00am–2:00pm 
  • Please note the relay is also happening on Saturday, November 13th. If you pick up during this time, you will get to see the layout of City Island as well as the start/finish line area. 
3. RACE DAY ON CITY ISLAND (Sunday, November 14th)
  • 6am–7:15am 

  • Can I pick up for another person? Yes, that is fine. If you do pick up the race bib/shirt for another person, please make sure they know. Otherwise they will come to packet pick up, not find their bib, and the race will have to assign a new bib for them.
  • Finding your bib number: There will be bib charts at the race. You will find the bib number beside your last name and give that number to a volunteer, who will then get your race bib and shirt. 
  • City Island Entrance/Exit: Please note that the south entrance/exit of City Island will close in the morning to accommodate runners coming across the Market St Bridge sidewalk. The north entrance will remain open all day (which is directly across Market St from the south entrance).
  • Picking up on race morning: If you are picking up your race bib/shirt on race morning, please arrive early so you can get parked, get your bib and race shirt, and have time to the starting line. We recommend everyone is arrived to City Island by 7am at the latest. 
  • Extra small hoodies. Please note that unfortunately there are no extra small hoodies available. All extra small hoodies will be replaced by size small. 
City Island Address: 245 Championship Way, Harrisburg, PA 17101 
This is a USATF (United States Track and Field) Certified 26.2-Mile Course. Course certification number is PA20011NP. If you are not familiar with USATF certification, this means that the course has been officially measured following procedures required by United States Track and Field. When the course is officially measured, it means that it is not too long or too short. 
TWO LOOPS: Please note that you will complete two 13.1 mile loops of this course. The start, halfway, and finish line are all in the same area in the north parking lot on City Island. 
This course starts and ends in the north parking lot of City Island.
Since this is a course where you will do two loops, there will be passing involved. We ask that you limit buddy running in the areas with two-way runner traffic and yield to participants who are passing you. 
We will have volunteers throughout the course, so please take the time to thank them as you go by! We could not make these races happen without our wonderful volunteer crew on the course and start/finish line area.
Please note that there will be some pedestrians using the same paths the course uses. There may be some people on bikes, with strollers, walking dogs, etc. 
We will have mile markers 1-26 on the course.
They will be labeled FIRST LOOP and SECOND LOOP for your reference (see below).
Miles 1-13 will be the first loop and 14-26 will be the second loop.
Please make note of this and remember which loop you are on.
You may also see some mile markers spray painted on the path. Please disregard these; they are from the previous marathon course. 
When you are on the out-and-back stretch along the Harvey Taylor Bridge, the mile markers will be attached to the guardrails of the bridge on your left. This will be for miles 2, 3, 15, and 16. 
Please read this section - this information was updated in September 2021. All gathering restrictions have been lifted, so we are able to go back to a group start and not use staggered corrals like in 2020.

6:30am – Walker start

7:30am – Group Start. This will include the male and female elites lining up at the starting line in the front of the pack. 

End of group start to 7:45am – Rolling Start. We will then leave the starting line open on a rolling basis until 7:45am. If anyone does not want to start with a group start, they can hang back for a bit and then start the race on a rolling basis after the main group start has cleared the starting line arch. We realize that not everyone feels comfortable with a group start, so any participant that wants to start with some extra space will be able to during this time.

NOTE: The above starting times will include male and female Elites in the group start at 7:30am. Elites and anyone competing for an age group award should line up as close to the starting line as possible. There are no corrals starting every 10 minutes like in the 2020 event. 

The Marathon course will be open until 2:30pm.
The diagrams below are not to scale, but meant to give you an idea of how the starting line/halfway point/finish line will work. 
The starting line/halfway point/finish line are the same. 
All of this will take place in the north parking lot on City Island and packet pickup will be nearby. 
Remember, this is a two loop course, with each loop being 13.1 miles. This makes the halfway point the 13.1 mile mark and the finish 26.2 miles. 

Please pick up your race bag and bib on Thursday, Friday or Saturday. If you try to pick up on Sunday morning and have to wait in line, you may miss the start at 6:30am. If you do pick up on Sunday morning, please arrive early. 
Yellow directional signs will be located at all turns and intersections to tell you which direction to go. Please follow all signs. 
Volunteers and aid stations will not be on the course until closer to 7:15-8am, depending on the location. Please carry fuel with you for the first part of the race. 
Please take a moment to review the course maps above. The more prepared you are on race day, the less you will need to follow course markings and the less of a chance you will miss a turn.

It is fine to walk/run while on the course.
Please only use the 6:30 am start time if you think you need the extra time to finish all 26.2 miles. 
If any participant would like to change their status from a runner to a walker, you must hit "reply" to this email and request the change by Monday, November 8th, by 5:00 pm. Participants not registered as walkers cannot show up at the early 6:30 am start. This will result in not having an official time in the results. 
All walker times will be gun time at the start and chip time at the finish.
There will be four aid stations on the course (map below).
You will hit two of them hit twice per lap and two of them once per lap. There will be Gatorade (Frost Glacier Freeze) to the aid stations you hit twice (Aid Stations #3 and #4). The Gatorade will be in paper cups with lids.
There will be 8oz bottles of water at all aid stations. 
Honey Stinger gels will be available at Aid Stations #3 and #4. 
Participants are also welcome to carry their own hydration packs and gels along with them.
Porta-potties will be located at the start/finish area, by all aid stations, and at additional locations throughout the course. 
Water will be served in bottles like the one below. You will run by and pick it up (try not to touch the table or anything but the bottle you pick up).
The caps will be on and you will have to twist them off. There will be trash cans staggered after the water stops so you will have some distance to run and drink before you dispose of them.  
Gatorade will be available at aid stations #3 and #4 (map below). 
You will have to pick up a cup of Gatorade, remove the lid, and dispose of it in a trash can. The paper cup lids are pinchable. 
The Gatorade flavor will be Frost Glacier Freeze. 
Below is a map of where the aid stations are as well as the approximate mile markers of each. 
Course Marking: There will be arrows signs throughout the course. The arrow signs will be yellow signs with black arrows. Some course signs will be just arrows and others will have specific details. The course is pretty simple to navigate, but please pay attention to signs and instructions.
There are not as many people in the race as usual and much of the course is one-way runner traffic, so you won't always be able to follow someone in front of you. We will also have volunteers at most turns to guide you. 
The course is on paved path and sidewalk. There is a section of gravel path at the southern part of the course. Most of the course is in fairly good shape except for some of the uneven parts of City Island, which is where the start/halfway point/finish is. When you are running these areas, just be aware for rough areas of the parking lot. 
Bikes and non-registered runners on the courseThere will be a group of designated lead bikers and bike sweepers on the course. While we want all participants to have as much support as possible, we are not able to allow spectator bikes and non-registered runners alongside participants. If you want someone to pace you, have them register for the race or run with one of our pace groups. 
There will be porta-potties at the starting line area and throughout the course. We will place hand sanitizers in each unit. Units will be located adjacent to all aid stations shown above. Other units will also be spread out along the course. 
Porta-potties will be located adjacent to all Aid Stations as well as throughout the course. 
The City of Harrisburg has some porta-potty units located around the City Island area, which are all public units. We are also having units delivered just for this race.
Please note that any of the units there specifically for the race will have the sign below on them. 
If you see the sign below on a unit, it means that it is for you as a race participant.
We are working to deter others from using them, so we will be zip-tying the units before and after the race. 
Awards for this race are scored in the same format as the Boston Marathon: 
  • Overall awards - Gun time
  • Age group awards - Chip time
If you are not familiar with the difference between chip time and gun time, please take a moment to read below. 
Chip time is the total time between when you race bib cross the starting line mats and the finish line mats. Your race bib has a timing chip that will trigger when you cross both locations. 
With chip time, order of finish does not determine award placement. Just because you cross the finish line before another participant does not mean you ran a faster time than them.
Example: Participant A crosses the finish line 5 seconds before participant B. It appears that Participant A had a faster time and would place above Participant B in the awards. But, Participant B actually crossed the starting line 30 seconds AFTER Participant A. In the final results, Participant B had a chip time that was 25 seconds faster than Participant A, so Participant B would be seeded higher in the final results and for the age group awards. 
In summary, just because you cross the finish line before someone does not necessarily mean your chip time was faster. 
Gun time starts when starting gun goes off and finishes when your race bib (timing chip on the back) crosses the finish line mats. 
With gun time, all participants have a starting time that begins when the air horn sounds at the beginning of the race. Their official time is determined when they cross the finish line and their bib triggers when they cross the finish line mats. 
All gun times are seeded in direct order of finish. With gun time, any time you cross the finish line before someone, you are seeded above that person in the results.
Example: The first male who crosses the finish line gets first place, the second male who crosses the finish line gets second place, and that continues until the last person finishes. 
All overall awards are seeded based on gun time (order of finish)
All age group awards are seeded by chip time 
No exceptions will be made when designating overall and age group awards
When checking results, please make sure you are looking at the correct category when looking to see if you placed for an award. 
Regardless, if you are planning on competing for an age group award, it is highly recommended you start at close to the starting line as possible. 

PLEASE DO NOT GO TO THE TIMING TENT TO REQUEST YOUR TIME OR ASK QUESTIONS OF THE TIMING STAFF. Our timing staff will not be able to assist you as they will be managing starts, stops, and checkpoints. 

We will not be issuing prize money.


Overall Awards (1st-3rd place for all four categories below) - GUN TIME

Overall Male
Overall Female
Overall Male Masters (40+)
Overall Female Masters (40+)

Age Group Awards (1st-3rd place for all four categories below) - CHIP TIME
19 and under
No duplicate awards (meaning if you win an overall award, you will not also win an age-group award)


We will have two award ceremonies: One at 11am, another at 12pm
At the 11am ceremony, we will give out the awards for all the award categories that have been filled. At 12pm, we will finish all the other awards categories. 
The awards ceremony will be at the DJ table in the start/halfway/finish line area.  
If you win an award, congrats! We would love for you to stay for the award ceremony, but we understand that is not always possible. 
If you win an award but do not stay for the ceremony, please email here following the race. In the email. please reference your age group and the place (1st, 2nd, or 3rd). 
Please note that the day after the race, our race staff are still out of the office getting things wrapped up. We will reply as soon as possible but it may be not be until Tuesday or Wednesday. Please do not call and email multiple times inquiring about picking up your award; we will get to you as soon as we can. 
If you live in the area, we will correspond via email to have your award medal available at the East Shore YMCA to be picked up. If you do not live within driving distance, we will work with you on a case by case basis.
We kindly request no phone calls inquiring about picking up awards so we do not end up playing "phone tag" when trying to correspond.
Final results will be uploaded as soon as possible following the race. 

Our race timer will be updating results throughout the morning via the links below. After you finish, check the links and your official time will be up shortly. 

Please do not go to the race timer tent to inquire about your race time, they will be updated on the website quickly!

Results will be listed on FalconRaceTiming.com.
The final results on Sunday will also be posted on our Harrisburg YMCA Races Facebook page, so please follow our page or check back following the Sunday event. 
The Harrisburg Marathon does not have an official host hotel, but the Penn Harris Hotel (formerly the Harrisburg Radisson) has offered a special rate for Friday, November 12th and Saturday, November 13th. The rate is $99/night plus tax. You can also request a late checkout. Just call the Penn Harris Hotel at 717-763-7117. The deadline for booking a room is Monday, November 8th. 
The Penn Harris Hotel is a short drive to City Island (approximately 6-8 minutes), which is where the race starts and finishes.  
All participants who complete the race will receive a finisher medal!
There will be 50 Midshipmen from the United States Naval Academy Marathon Team from Annapolis participating in the event this year! The Harrisburg Marathon is excited to have them and welcome them to Harrisburg!
All photos will be free to download thanks to our photo sponsor, Premier Eye Care Group!

Once photos are ready, we will post them on our Harrisburg Area YMCA Races Facebook page, so be sure to check back!

Please allow 1-2 weeks to process.
We are excited to announce live tracking for this year's marathon! This tracking is available for all marathon runners. Runners and spectators just have to download the app and follow the instructions below. Racejoy uses GPS phone tracking for runners that carry their phone throughout the race. 

After you cross the finish line, you will go through the finish line chute on the outside area of the north parking lot on City Island. You will go past the UPMC Medical Tent area and then receive a bottle of water, a finisher medal, and a bag of food to take with you. 
Post-Race Food: There will be post-race food catered by Karns Quality Foods available for participants following the race. This food is available to participants only. Spectators or anyone without a race bib will not be permitted in the food line. Please do not take food for anyone but yourself.
We are excited to welcome back the team from Marathonpacing.com!
Spectators are welcome!
The best viewing area for the event is at the start/halfway/finish line. Please refer to the images above in the START/HALFWAY/FINISH LINE section. 
EMS utility vehicles will be available along the course. EMTs will be available near the finish line on City Island. 
Medical personnel will have the full ability to make a decision if it is not physically safe for a participant to continue the event. 
There will be a medical tent on City Island at the start/halfway point/finish for all participants if they need any medical assistance. Should a participant require transportation to a hospital and hospitalization for any reason, the race is not liable for medical costs incurred. 
There will not be a bag drop option at the event this year. 
Click here to visit the Harrisburg Marathon page on YMCARun.com
Click here to visit the Harrisburg YMCA Races Facebook Page.
Can I wear headphones?
If you wear headphones, please be aware of your surroundings, especially if someone is passing you and gives you verbal notice before doing so. This is a TWO LOOP course and many runners are going for a BQ, so it is the responsibility of all participants to be considerate of other runners and yield to them when passing. 
Can I run with my child in a baby jogger or with my dog on a leash?
No. Unfortunately, we do not allow baby joggers or animals on the course for safety reasons.
Thank you for your support and good luck on race day!
The 2021 Harrisburg Marathon is sponsored by ENDERS INSURANCE

Race photos are free to download thanks for our photo sponsor, Premier Eye Care Group!

The Medical Tent is sponsored by UPMC!

Fleet Feet Mechanicsburg is the Official Training and Apparel Store of the Harrisburg YMCA Race Series
Thanks to our Race Bag and Heat Sheet Sponsor, Cynthia Forry!

Our Healthy Living Sponsor is Select Physical Therapy

Our Potato Chip Sponsor is Martin's Potato Chips

Edgar Snyder Associates is the Entertainment Sponsor!
Thank you for supporting the East Shore YMCA!

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