Reimagined DONNA Marathon returns to Northeast Florida Feb. 8–10

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Reimagined DONNA Marathon returns to Northeast Florida Feb. 8–10

DONNA Marathon Weekend is being held this weekend, Feb. 8–11, with its start and finish in the heart of Neptune Beach and Atlantic Beach. 

With Beaches Town Center now the epicenter of weekend events, locals and visitors have choices to shop, dine, relax and now race. Listed as Women’s Running Magazine’s “favorite charity race,” 26.2 with DONNA The National Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer is the only marathon in the country dedicated to breast cancer research and care.

“We believe the Beaches Town Center, with its eclectic mix of shops, restaurants and entertainment, will provide runners with a unique beach destination experience,” event founder Donna Deegan said. “This is what runners are telling us they want. A beautiful running venue and one that also offers a welcoming fan experience and exciting post-race celebration.”

Now in its 12th year, DONNA Marathon Weekend events include a 5K, marathon, half marathon and race expo, all taking place on the island. Participants will continue to enjoy Jacksonville’s beach communities of Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, Jacksonville Beach and Ponte Vedra Beach. Marking a shift this year, the Intracoastal Bridge is no longer a part of the route. According to The Donna Foundation, that makes the Boston Marathon-qualifying course, already one of Florida’s fastest, an even greater opportunity for setting new personal records.

“We are truly thrilled to welcome this amazing event to Neptune Beach,” Neptune Beach Mayor Elaine Brown said. “Our community already embraces these runners with open arms, and I know our neighborhoods and our business community will go all out to support them and the wonderful cause they represent.”

Atlantic Beach Mayor Ellen Glasser echoed those sentiments. 

"Atlantic Beach is proud to welcome all DONNA runners to our city in 2019,” Glasser said. “Get ready — along with our sister city, Neptune Beach, we will line our streets to cheer on runners warmly and loudly. In supporting the 12th annual 26.2 with DONNA The Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer, we are eager to shine the light of our special communities on the effort to finish this disease."

The theme of the 2019 DONNA Marathon Weekend is #TogetherWeWILL, aimed at inspiring everyone through the power of working together. According to The Donna Foundation, “it is a reminder that together we help our friends, family and community achieve monumental goals. Together, we push each other to run a little faster, walk a little further and give a little more, because together we can, and we will.”

Since its inception in 2008, DONNA Marathon Weekend has raised nearly $6 million in funding for The DONNA Foundation, supporting over 12,000 families living with breast cancer by providing assistance and support when it is needed most. The DONNA Foundation has also disbursed more than $3.3 million of race proceeds to the Mayo Clinic Breast Cancer Translational Genomics Research Program.

Marathon weekend events

Friday | Feb. 8, 2019

Social Shakeout Run

This event is free and open to the public. Race founders Donna Deegan, Olympian and Training Director Jeff Galloway and Dr. Edith Perez will be participating in the run. A three-mile run/walk will begin at 8 a.m.

When: 8 a.m.

Where: Southern Grounds, 200 1st Street, Neptune Beach

DONNA Packet Pickup & Community Expo presented by Puma Biotechnology

This event is free and open to the public with complimentary parking included. Registration and packet pickup for all events will be available.

When: Open Noon to 6 p.m.

Where: 500 Atlantic Blvd., Neptune Beach

Saturday | Feb. 9, 2019

DONNA 5K presented by AXA and Jaguars Foundation/

Family Fun Run presented by Jaguars Foundation / DONNA 110 Ultra Marathon

5K participants earn a signature Running Ribbon medal and experience a reimagined 5K at the beach. DONNA ultra-marathon athletes also begin their 110 miles to finish breast cancer.

When:

6 a.m. Registration and packet pickup opens inside the “K-Mart” Expo

7 a.m. JAXSON DE VILLE arrives

7:30 a.m. Warm up with David Garrard, former NFL Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback and owner of Retro Fitness, personal trainers of the DONNA.

7:30 a.m. 110 Start

8 a.m. 5K Start

9 a.m. Family Fun Run Start

Where: Beaches Town Center, 0 Atlantic Blvd, Neptune Beach

DONNA Packet Pickup & Community Expo presented by Puma Biotechnology

This event is free and open to the public with complimentary parking included. Return for Day 2 of the DONNA Health & Fitness Expo. Shop, sip and sample from nearly 100 exhibitors. 

When: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Where: 500 Atlantic Blvd., Neptune Beach

Sunday | Feb. 10, 2019

26.2 with DONNA Marathon, DONNA Half Marathon, DONNA Booby Trap Challenge presented by FIS

The main event of the DONNA Marathon Weekend now starts and finishes in the heart of Atlantic Beach and Neptune Beach, and meanders through Jacksonville’s four beach communities. A USATF certified and Boston Marathon qualifier, expect fast times in 2019 with a flatter, faster course design.

When:

4 a.m. Shuttle Parking opens at UNF Lot 18

5 a.m. Runner’s Village opens

7:27 a.m. Wheelchair start

7:30 a.m. Start

Where: Beaches Town Center, 0 Atlantic Blvd, Neptune Beach

Amgen Runners’ Village and Post Race Party

Plan to meet and celebrate with family and friends at the DONNA Post Race Party inside Amgen Runners Village. Enjoy a Mic Ultra, hot dogs courtesy of Sawyer Gas & Grill and recover with a massage in the CORA Sports Medicine Tent.

When: 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Where: Beaches Town Center, 0 Atlantic Blvd., Neptune Beach

More information on DONNA Marathon Weekend

Registration for DONNA Marathon events open through Feb. 9

Online Registration continues through Saturday, Feb. 9 and on-site at the Expo during DONNA Marathon Weekend.

Participant drop-off and rideshare

All weekend, a designated area for drop-off and rideshare services (Uber, Lyft, etc.) will be available in the Expo parking area at 500 Atlantic Blvd. Approach the area from Atlantic Blvd. east.

Bicycle parking

All weekend, bicycle “valet” parking will be available at the Expo. Roll-up to the garden center entrance to park your bike. 

Parking for Saturday races

The DONNA 5K and Family Fun Run will be held in the Beaches Town Center. Parking is available on a first come, first served basis from the Expo parking area.

Marathon Sunday shuttles

There will be FREE parking for all participants at the University of North Florida, Lot 18 beginning at 4 a.m. race morning. Continuous shuttle service to the start/finish will run from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. Arrive early and allow time for traffic delays.

Road Closures

Note that access to communities along the route may be inhibited for up to seven hours beginning at 6 a.m. on race day. Plan for delays.

Access to Beaches Town Center may be inhibited beginning Friday, Feb. 8 at noon through Sunday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m.

Third Street northbound will be closed at Florida Boulevard Sunday, Feb. 10 from 7 a.m. until 8 a.m.

Atlantic Boulevard westbound will be closed at 3rd St. to Royal Palms Drive Sunday, Feb. 10 from 7 a.m. until 8 a.m.

For more information on The DONNA Foundation, visit http://www.thedonnafoundation.org. 

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