What are the registration policies for 2021?

2021 Policies

Please review the following 2021 policies carefully prior to registering:
  • No refunds or deferrals will be offered.
  • Participants who deferred their registration in 2020 may defer their registration for one more year. All 2020 registrations must be used by 2022. See additional information below.

  • If the 2021 Union Home Mortgage Cleveland Marathon in-person event is cancelled due to a government order related to the COVID-19 pandemic, all participants will be automatically converted to the equivalent virtual event. This policy is in place to protect both the event and the participants. Race permits, shirts, medals and other supplies are purchased months before the event. There will be no partial or full refunds offered for the event - no exceptions.

  • All fee increase dates will be published on our website and announced on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

  • If a participant wants to transfer from one subevent to another of greater distance, they will be responsible for the transfer fee AND the difference in fees. If a participant wants to transfer from one subevent to another of shorter distance, they will be responsible for the transfer fee AND no refund will be made to account for the difference.

  • *Event transfers and person-to-person transfers will be available in January 2021.

I deferred my 2020 registration. How do I register for 2021 and what are my options?

All participants who deferred their 2020 registration will receive an email containing a unique code that they will need to use when registering for the 2021 event. Please email info@clevelandmarathon.com if you have not received your registration code.

Participants who deferred their 2020 registration will be able to register for an equal or shorter distance in 2021. If you wish to upgrade your distance, you will be required to pay the difference in subevent fees.

Participants must use their deferral code to register for the 2021 event by March 1, 2021 so we can account for the correct number of shirts and medals to order. If you do not register by March 1, 2021, your registration will be automatically deferred to 2022.

*Please note: If you use your deferral code to register for 2021 and then we are forced to go virtual, you have the option to change your status to 2022 if you do not wish to run the virtual event. You must contact us to let us know you are changing your status so we can mark your file and remove you from the 2021 event. This only applies to 2020 deferred participants. Email: info@clevelandmarathon.com

Will there be a virtual option for 2021 registration?

We are planning on having an in-person event for 2021. As we closely monitor the COVID situation, we will update participants on any changes.

What happens to my registration if the 2021 race is cancelled due to COVID-19?

If the 2021 Union Home Mortgage Cleveland Marathon in-person event is cancelled due to a government order related to the COVID-19 pandemic, all participants will be automatically converted to the equivalent virtual event. This policy is in place to protect both the event and the participants. Race permits, shirts, medals and other supplies are purchased months before the event. There will be no partial or full refunds offered for the event - no exceptions.

As we closely monitor the situation including government and state guidelines, we will determine options for participants should we be forced to cancel the live event.

We are moving forward and working hard behind the scenes to adjust accordingly in order to comply with state and federal guidelines surrounding COVID-19. Our goal is to produce an event that is safe, while providing all of our participants with an unforgettable, outstanding experience as they #CONQUERTHELAND in 2021!

We will continue to share updates as we learn more about the guidelines and how they may impact the planning and execution of our event. Please know that the safety of our runners and the Cleveland community is our number one priority.

I purchased the protection policy when I registered. How do I file a claim?

When you purchase a protection policy through FanShield, you will receive an email directly from them with the information on how to file a claim. If you did not see the email, you may go to this link to file your claim:  https://www.fanshield.insure/ohio-terms

If the event is virtual, the policy will still function the same and filing the claim will follow all the normal protocols.

Please note the FanShield policies in regards to COVID-19 or go to FanShield FAQs.

Is it safe and secure to register over the internet and is my personal information protected? 

YES! The Cleveland Marathon has partnered Race Roster. Read their privacy policy.

I registered for a Cleveland Marathon event and now I am unable to run. Can I get my money back or transfer to another year? 

We are sorry, but we do not offer refunds or transfers to future races.

How do I edit the information I entered in my registration? 

 How To Edit

What if I sign up for one event, but my training doesn't go as planned? Can I transfer to another sub-event?

 Switching events and transferring to another person are not available until January, 2021.

How To Transfer

I already registered, but cannot run. Is there a way to transfer my registration to someone else?

You may transfer to another person, but please note there is a fee to transfer. Transfers will be available beginning in January 2021. The cost to switch to a new person is $20.

Can't I just "give" my entry to my friend if I cannot run?

No. Due to USATF rules and regulations, each participant must register himself/herself and sign his/her own waiver. Any walker or runner who is participating with another participant’s bib number can be disqualified at the discretion of the race director.

I do not remember if I registered and need another confirmation email? 

 No problem. You may confirm you registration here.

What is included in my entry fee?

Every participant will receive a short-sleeved shirt, goody bag, medal, finish line refreshments and more. Additionally, entry fees are used to ensure that the course is free of cars and safe for all participants.

Can I change my estimated finish time or corral assignment?

Yes. If you entered your estimated finish time incorrectly during registration, or if your pace has increased since you registered, please edit your finish time before 5/1/2021.

Please email us directly for further assistance: info@clevelandmarathon.com


Challenge Series

What is the Challenge Series?

The Challenge Series was developed for those who are ready to challenge themselves by running two days in a row (Saturday and Sunday) and to add more variety to the race weekend event choices. Participants can choose from four levels and will receive special incentives for completing the series. See more details here. We offer 4 levels for the Challenge Series: 5K/Half Marathon, 5K/Marathon, 10K/Half Marathon, 10K/Marathon.

Why not just run two individual events – what is the difference?

Participants who complete the Challenge Series receive more than if they just register for two individual events. Each Challenge Series participant will receive 2 shirts, 3 medals and an exclusive gift that may be picked up. Location TBD.

What is the deadline to register for the Challenge Series?

The deadline to register for the 2021 Challenge Series is May 1, 2021, unless announced otherwise.

Can I walk in the Challenge Series?

Yes! Challenge Series participants may run or walk either one or both of the race distances. During registration, you will be asked if you will run or walk.

Will I receive two separate bibs for the Challenge Series – one for each event?

You will receive one bib that should be used for both days. Please be sure to keep your bib after your Saturday run.

When should I pick up my packet?

Please check back for updates for packet pick-up for 2021.



out-of-town guests

Can you direct me to your host hotel as well as other hotels in close proximity to the start and finish line area?

Our host hotel is the Hyatt Regency at the Arcade and is within one mile from the start and finish. For the Hyatt's contact information and a list of other recommended hotels please visit the Hotel page on our website.

I am traveling to Cleveland for race weekend. Do you have any suggestions on things to do and where to eat?

There’s so much to do in Cleveland throughout the year, but especially during race weekend as well as a great variety of restaurants in many of our featured neighborhoods!  Check out our Plan Your Visit page and start getting ready to be #ALLINCLE! Also, be sure to follow us on social media and join our e-newsletter for special offers including discount admission tickets for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum, Cleveland Indians and other Supporting Sponsors!



Who are the sponsors of the event? 

The new title sponsor of the Cleveland Marathon is Union Home Mortgage. We are thrilled to also partner with University Hospitals, Great Lakes Brewing Company, Think Media Studios and more. To see the full list of sponsors, please click here.

How can I become a sponsor of the race? 

Our sponsorship program offers a variety of benefits and we will work exclusively with you to tailor a program that meets your organization's marketing goals, objectives and budgetary needs. We invite you to become a part or our team and enjoy the long-term benefits of being part of this long standing Cleveland tradition. To learn more about our sponsorship program click here.


I have a friend who would like to volunteer, can they help?

Yes! We welcome you to be a part of our Race Crew and join our Volunteer Program. We always need an extra set of hands! Please visit our volunteer page to learn about the opportunities available for volunteers.




Do you have a Charity Program? How do I become a Charity Partner? 

Our 2021 Charity Program will open for new submissions in September, 2020. Please direct any questions to info@clevelandmarathon.com. Please view our current list of charity partners here.

handcycle division

Is there a Wheelchair and/or Handcycle Division in the race?

Yes, there is a Handcycle Division for the full marathon. There is a participant cap of 12 handcyclists.

Please review the UCI classification structure information. All entrants must meet these guidelines in order to register for the event.
Interested participants should contact Ralph Staph at cmi@clevelandmarathon.com for registration information and to obtain a copy of a special waiver that must be signed prior to race weekend.


rules and regulations

What are the age requirements for registering for a particular event? 

Participants under 18 must have a parent or legal guardian sign their Registration Waiver for all events. We do not recommend that participants under 18 run in the full marathon event.

Is there a bag or backpack policy? 

Bags and backpacks are strongly discouraged at the Start/Finish areas on race day. For participants, clear gear check bags will be provided and those must be used for gear check on race day. Spectators are asked to travel lightly as well. Those with diaper bags, purses and other items should note that their bags could be searched in the vicinity of the start and finish lines. Any unattended bags are subject to search and removal from the premises.

Are strollers or baby joggers allowed on the course?

NO. Strollers and baby joggers are prohibited.

Am I allowed to ride my bike on course to follow a participant?

NO. As part of our security measures, there are no spectators (on or off bikes) allowed on the official course. Only those part of the Official Medical team and Wheelchair exhibition pacers allowed.


Expo/packet pick-up

Please check back for updates on days, times, location and parking.

Can someone else pick up my bib and race packet for me?

YES! Someone other than the registered runner may pick up the race packet at the Expo. BUT - everyone must show an I.D. to get a packet. A photocopy will suffice, but no packets will be given out without proper I.D.

Can I pick up my race packet on race day?

No, there is no packet pick-up race day.

I won't be able to participate; can I still pick up my t-shirt?

YES! Please contact us to make arrangements for t-shirt pick-up: info@clevelandmarathon.com



course and finish line

How long is the course open for each distance?

TBD - Please check back for updates

How many water stations are there on the course? What type of energy drink and gel are available? 

TBD - Please check back for updates

Is the water provided along the course clean and safe to drink? 

YES! The water we use on the course on race weekend is from hydrants that are flushed twice before race day. The hydrants are flushed two weeks before the race and once again the day before the race or race morning. The process we use to obtain the drinking water results is the same quality that a Cleveland resident would receive from turning on the faucet. The Cleveland Water Department tests the water quality and assures us that it is safe. We also purchase new hoses every year to ensure the highest level of quality for our participants. And, as an added safety feature, our water stop volunteers wear gloves while distributing the cups.



The Cleveland Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K courses are certified each year according to USATF standards, using a bike equipped with a calibrated measuring wheel and following the shortest possible route (tangents). Additional distance discrepancies are caused by the actual route run on the course and the accuracy of individual GPS units being used by runners.

Click here to read an article on course certification and the accuracy of GPS measurements.


Is the Cleveland Marathon a Boston Marathon qualifier?

YES! Our marathon course is measured and certified, and runners who meet the required Boston Marathon finisher's times at our race can qualify for Boston.

What is the temperature usually like on race day in Cleveland?

Typically, during the third weekend in May, the average high temperature in Cleveland is 68 degrees Fahrenheit. The low is 49 degrees. It's often chilly in the morning, but it warms up rather quickly. Layers are advised for all runners! For more details, please click here for the National Weather Service page. 

How do you time the events?

The Cleveland Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K and 5K will use MyLaps Timing.

The Cleveland Marathon is now an AbbottWMM Wanda Age Group Qualifier? What does that mean?

We have been chosen as one of the qualifying events for the AbbottWMM Wanda Age Group World Rankings which is comprised of a one-year qualifying period during which athletes in nine separate age groups can compete in over 50 marathons across the world to earn ranking points.

At the end of the qualifying period, the top ranked runners in each age group will be invited to the AbbottWMM Wanda Age Group World Championships, to be held in 2021. The rankings cover age groups from 40 and up. The qualifying period runs from October 13, 2019 - October 11, 2020.  Get more info here.