CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The Bank of America Chicago Marathon has been canceled in response to the ongoing public health concerns due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Bank of America Chicago Marathon was scheduled for Sunday, October 11.
Event organizers and the City of Chicago made the decision to cancel race weekend activities, citing the challenges of staging an event of this scale at this time and out of concern for the safety of event participants, volunteers, event staff and spectators.
“The Chicago Marathon is our city’s beloved annual celebration of more than 45,000 runners, as well as tens of thousands of volunteers, spectators and city residents, all of whom come together race weekend as one community here in our city,” said Mayor Lori Lightfoot, in a statement. “Like all Chicagoans, I’m personally disappointed that this year’s event won’t take place as originally planned, however, we look forward to welcoming all runners and their cheering squads once again when the Chicago Marathon returns to our city in full force for another very exciting race.”
Registered participants for the 2020 event will have the option to receive a refund for their race entry or defer their place and entry fee to a future Bank of America Chicago Marathon in 2021, 2022, or 2023.
Event organizers notified participants Monday, and said they will provide an update to participants in the coming days with additional information on the available options.
Registered participants for the International Chicago 5K will also have the option to receive a refund or defer their entry to a future year.
“Hope drives us as runners and as humans. My hope was to see everyone on the start line on Sunday, October 11, but our highest priority has always been the safety of our participants and our volunteers,” said Carey Pinkowski, executive race director of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. “We understand the disappointment, but when we return to the streets of Chicago, it will be a celebratory moment and an uncompromising statement about the collective spirit of who we are as a running community: we are powerful, we are persistent, and we will reach the finish line again.”
Event organizers said they are currently developing plans for a virtual experience to recognize the dedication and commitment of everyone who would have taken part in the 43rd running of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Details on how participants, their network of supporters, and fans of the sport can get involved will be shared in the coming weeks.