Runner Safety

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 31, 2020 - On Monday, the Governor of Virginia, Ralph Northam issued a statewide Stay at Home order until June 10 to protect the health and safety of Virginians and mitigate the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Following the guidance of government and health officials, the Marine Corps Marathon Organization (MCMO) has announced that 2020 Marine Corps Historic Half Weekend events, scheduled for Friday, May 15 through Sunday, May 17 have been cancelled to support the wellbeing of the running community, residents, Marines and partners.

A refund on registration fees will not be provided. The MCMO has prioritized rewarding the loyalty of registered runners while offering alternative solutions for runners to participate in Historic Half Weekend.

Registered Runners
Beginning April 3, those currently registered for Historic Half Weekend can:

  • Defer entry into next year’s Historic Half Weekend on May 16, 2021 with no additional fees. Runners who defer to 2021 are eligible to re-register for the 2020 virtual event (at fees detailed below).
  • Transfer to virtual option. Complete a run of the distance of your choosing (5 miles, 13.1 miles or 18.1 miles) and receive participant shirt, finisher medal and certificate, as well as the new Motigo Historic Half Audio Experience.

The deadline to defer and register for virtual participation is May 16, 2020. Further instructions will be sent to the e-mail address provided by participants during registration within the next 48 hours.

All currently registered runners will receive a 30% LOYALTY discount on registration for any new and remaining 2020 MCM Event Series date, including the MCHH Virtual Run, the MCM10K or the MCM Kids Run during MCM Weekend in October. Registered runners who defer to 2021 may apply this discount to the new Historic Half virtual option. Discount codes will be sent directly via e-mail.

New Virtual Option
On April 3, a new registration for the Historic Half Weekend Virtual Open will be available to ANYONE motivated to complete the Half, Semper5ive or Devil Dog Double. Virtual entry fee is $28 for Historic Half and Semper 5ive; $35 for Devil Dog Double; and includes the shipping and handling of the participant shirt, finisher medal and certificate and the Motigo Historic Half Audio Experience.

March 27, 2020 - We want to support you, our runners, as you comply with the guidance of local and national leadership and health officials while maintaining a commitment to staying safe and leading a healthy lifestyle.

Historic Half Weekend remains on schedule at this current time, we know this means for some the decision to run the Historic Half is out of your hands and for others there are barriers in the way of your ability to participate.

While a refund on registration fees will not be provided, it is important that we offer these alternative solutions for registered runners to participate in Historic Half Weekend with no additional costs:

  • Defer your entry into next year’s Historic Half Weekend on May 16, 2021.
  • Switch your participant category to "Virtual Run." Complete a run of your designated distance (5ive miles, 13.1 miles or 18.1 miles) and receive your participant shirt and finisher medal. Directions will be provided for runners to upload virtual results.
  • Maintain the plan to run during Historic Half Weekend.

The deadline to defer or shift to virtual participation is May 7, 2020.

March 20, 2020 - The Marine Corps Marathon Organization (MCMO) continues to closely monitor the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19). We find ourselves in an unprecedented global health crisis and the safety of our runners, volunteers, Marines, spectators and staff remains our main concern.

Last week, we made the difficult decision to cancel the Marine Corps 17.75K and Motivational Dinner, in accordance with the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) to avoid having large groups of people in close proximity for eight weeks.

As of today, there have been no changes to MCMO events scheduled for later in May and June, including the 2020 Marine Corps Historic Half on May 17. We will continue to adhere to policies put forth by the federal, state and local governments and provide updates as quickly as possible in this rapidly evolving situation.

This is new and different and difficult for all of us. But despite the challenges, the MCM running community remains strong and supportive as we weather this storm together. With resources like the MCM website and our social media channels, the MCMO will continue to share details with open, honest and transparent communications. This is our pledge to you.

March 12, 2020 - The health and safety of our runners, volunteers, Marines, spectators and staff are top priorities for the Marine Corps Marathon Organization (MCMO). Due to the impact and development of coronavirus (COVID-19) and under the guidance of government and health officials, the 2020 Marine Corps 17.75K, scheduled for March 28, and the accompanying Motivational Dinner, have been cancelled.

We appreciate the support of our running community through this rapidly evolving situation. This was a very difficult decision and we know the cancellation is disappointing news for many.

That being said, all 17.75K registrants will still earn "Access Granted" for a guaranteed spot in the 45th Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) in October. Registration with the Guaranteed Access code must be completed by Tuesday, March 17 at 11:59 p.m.

All runners and guests who purchased a ticket to the 17.75K Motivational Dinner will receive a $20 credit for each ticket purchased. This credit may be used toward the purchase of any other MCMO event registration in 2020.

While a refund on registration fees will not be provided, we are offering the following options to all registered 17.75K participants at no additional cost:

  • Defer your entry into next year’s Marine Corps 17.75K in March 2021.
  • Switch your 17.75K participant category to “Virtual Run” and complete an 11.03 mile run by the original event date to receive your participant shirt and finisher medal.
  • Transfer your entry to the Belleau Wood 8K in June or the Quantico 12K in August.

Runners have until Tuesday, March 17 at 11:59 p.m. to choose one of the abovementioned options. Further instructions will be sent to the e-mail address provided by participants during registration within the next 24 hours.

Thank you for understanding. All questions may be directed to MCMCustomerService@usmc-mccs.org.

For additional information about COVID-19, please read the latest report from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) or your local health department website.

March 6, 2020 - The Marine Corps Marathon Organization (MCMO) is closely monitoring the impact and development of coronavirus (COVID-19) to ensure the health and safety of our runners, volunteers, spectators and staff.

There have been no scheduling changes to any MCMO event and the 2020 Marine Corps 17.75K is proceeding as planned. Runners are encouraged to follow the suggested health guidelines and take the appropriate safety precautions including regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, staying home when sick and avoiding close contact with anyone showing signs of illness. MCMO will adhere to policies put forth by the federal, state and local governments and provide ongoing updates as necessary.

More info available at Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, Virginia Department of Health and World Health Organization.

Event Safety

Safety and security are top priorities for Marine Corps Marathon organizers and the event’s law enforcement partners. Runners are allowed to carry, or wear, hydration backpacks (Camelbak), hydration vests and/or fuel belts while completing the Marathon, Historic Half or MCM-organized courses.

Runners will not be allowed to wear any other type of backpack or rucksack without the authorization of the MCM Director. Please contact the MCM office to appeal for consideration.

The wearing of any mask, hood or other device whereby a substantial portion of the face is hidden -- or covered -- so as to conceal the identity of the wearer is strictly prohibited.

Runners and spectators cannot bring glass containers to any event site. Flammable liquids are also prohibited from being carried into any event location. In addition, all drones will be prohibited at MCM events. The Washington Metropolitan area is designated a “no-drone zone” by the Federal Aviation Administration. Drones are also prohibited in all National Park Service locations, including the MCM course.

The MCM encourages runner behavior resulting in minimal impact on National Parks, public streets and other locations that comprise event courses.

Event Access

Runners and spectators are required to access the Marathon, Historic Half and MCM10K start and finish areas through screening points. Limiting the number of items brought to these events will greatly reduce the wait time at these entry points.

All runner and spectator bags, backpacks, purses, etc., will be subject to search by law enforcement at the screening points. Runners and spectators should never leave bags unattended anywhere near a course or the start and finish areas. Only clear plastic bags issued to participants will be allowed at baggage drop-off.

All participant bags will be issued during Packet Pick-up. The MCM-issued bib, provided during Packet Pick-up, serves as the most recognizable identification for participants of running events. Prior to arriving at the start area, runners must have the bib fastened to the front of their clothing.

Expo and Packet Pick-up

Security measures will be in place at the Health & Fitness Expo. All participants are required to present their E-Card in either printed form, or on a phone, to obtain their official bib and event-day materials. Proxy pick-up remains available for designated events.

In order to have a designated individual pick up the packet for a registered participant, the runner must sign his or her E-Card and provide the individual attending the Expo a photocopy of their Photo ID (driver's license, government ID, passport). The proxy will be required to sign the form and also show and provide a photocopy of their own Photo ID.

See Something, Say Something

Runners and spectators are asked by the MCM and its law enforcement partners to actively observe their surroundings while also supporting the procedures put in place to ensure the safety of all. If something suspicious is observed, individuals should report it immediately, either by calling 911 or by asking a police officer, or U.S. Marine for assistance. Event status updates, weather and news alerts will be disseminated on social media and the event website.