1 Mar 2023
The Shamrock Marathon is an annual running event that takes place in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The first Shamrock Marathon was held in 1973 and was organized by Jerry Bocrie, the owner of the local running store, Running Etc.
Initially, the Shamrock Marathon was a small, local event that attracted only a few dozen runners. However, as the popularity of running grew in the 1970s and 1980s, the Shamrock Marathon began to attract more participants. By the mid-1980s, the event had become a popular regional marathon and had established itself as one of the premier races on the East Coast.
Throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, the Shamrock Marathon continued to grow in popularity. In nineties, the event added a half marathon, which attracted even more runners. In 2003, the race was designated as the Road Runners Club of America's Eastern Regional Marathon Championship, further solidifying its reputation as a top-level event.
In 2008, the Shamrock Marathon was acquired by J&A Racing, a local event management company. J&A Racing made several changes to the event, including adding a 8K race, expanding the expo, and improving the course.
Today, the Shamrock Marathon is one of the largest running events in Virginia and attracts thousands of participants from all over the country. The weekend-long event includes a sports and fitness expo, multiple races (including the marathon, half marathon, and 8K), and a post-race party. The course takes runners along the scenic Virginia Beach oceanfront and finishes at the boardwalk.
Over the years, the Shamrock Marathon has become more than just a running event. It has become a beloved community tradition and a celebration of the spirit of Virginia Beach. From its humble beginnings as a small local race to its current status as a premier running event, the Shamrock Marathon has a rich history and has played an important role in the growth of running in Virginia Beach.