May 7 will be Decision Day for the Missoula Marathon
Run Wild Missoula, the organization behind the popular Missoula marathon, currently scheduled for the weekend of June 20, has a decision to make, and the date to decide if the race will occur is fast approaching.
Race Director Tony Banovich said Run Wild Missoula has made some changes ahead of the ultimate day of decision.
“There’s a little bit of discomfort in our ability to have a mass-participation event in Missoula at the end of June,” said Banovich. “There’s still 13 weeks till race day so we weren’t quite ready to throw in the towel. What we’ve done is all our race registration activities such as new registrations, referrals, bib exchanges and race changes; we’re going to suspend that until May 7th.”
Banovich said that decision gives race organizers time to weigh their options.
“That gives us some time to further evaluate what’s going on, and if by that date we think we can comfortably and safely conduct the race at the end of June,” he said. “So, what we’ll do is on Friday, April 3rd we’ll post what we can to provide as options for our race participants that are already registered in the event that we have to cancel.”
Banovich said that whether or not the Missoula Marathon will occur is out of his control, but encouraged runners and walkers to keep training no matter what happens.
“Keep getting out there,” he said. “Regardless of what happens with the Missoula Marathon and all the other spring and early summer running events around our community, we strongly advocate that message to get out there and be active, not just for your physical health but also for your emotional health. Getting outside and getting exercise will provide a little bit of normalcy no matter about the craziness in the world today.”
Banovich said the impact of the Missoula Marathon to the local economy is estimated at about $2 million, so canceling the event would be a huge blow to the western Montana economy.