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Rainbow Half Marathon

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Totem Pole

3510 North Recreation Drive

Chicago, IL 60657

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Event description



Sunday, August 13, 2017 at 7:00 a.m. 3 hour time limit. Early Start option is not available. This is a grass roots, low frills, free and fun event. Stride with pride!


The race starts and finishes on Chicago's lakefront, at the Totem Pole located in Lincoln Park across from Addison and Lakeshore Drive at 3600N.


This event is hosted by Frontrunners/Frontwalkers Chicago. For more information on running throughout the year, check out Frontrunners/Frontwalkers Chicago, the Chicagoland's LGBTQ running and walking club, at


There should be ample parking for the race but if you park in the lot north or east of the Totem Pole, it is not free. You can pay with coins, bills or credit cards for up to 24 hours at a time. A receipt will be printed and you put it on the driver's side dashboard. We suggest carpooling, bikes and cabs. You can lock your bike up to the gate around the Totem Pole.

Packet Pickup, Race Day Registration and Reminders:

On race day, packet pickup with bib numbers will begin at the Totem Pole at 6:15 a.m. All runners must visibly display their bib number in front for score keeping purposes.

When finishing, please cross the Finish Line only once. Running through the Finish Line multiple times will confuse the Finish Line crew and timers. (They are easily confused.)


The 13.1 mile course consists of one large loop with out-and-back segments. The race follows the Lakefront running path. The course will start at the Totem Pole and run north to Hollywood Avenue and around the circle turnaround. From there, it will head back south along the same path. It will pass the Totem Pole and continue south. It will pass the North Avenue Beach House to the west and continue south to the east of the Chess Pavilion then down to near Oak Street. At the south turnaround point, it will return along the same path to the Totem Pole. It's mostly gravel with some asphalt sections. Detailed maps will be posted shortly before event. The course will not be USATF certified or CARA sanctioned but will be as close to 13.1 miles as GPS will allow.


Medals and fun to all finishers. You probably will also receive a 'grab bag' finishers shirt.

Aid Stations:

In addition to the numerous Chicago Park District water fountains located on the course, there will be 6 aid stations (3 aid stations passed twice each) approximately every 2.5 miles. These aid stations will be staffed by Frontrunners/Frontwalkers Chicago volunteers and friends. The locations will be:

  1. Start/Finish aid station - at the Totem Pole
  2. North Aid Station - on the west side of the Foster Avenue Beach House
  3. South Aid Station - on the west side of the Beach House at North Avenue

Aid stations will have water, Gatorade, snacks, variety of candy, fruits, first aid supplies and other surprises.

Unfortunately there will not be any bathroom facilities at the Start/Finish. But there are numerous (6) Chicago Park District bathrooms located on the course (Foster, Wilson, Roscoe, Belmont, Fullerton, North Avenue). Each of these facilities is passed twice.


Available online only. Click "REGISTER" to sign up. This event is limited to 100 participants. The deadline to sign up is Friday, August 11th at midnight. There will NOT be any race day registration and NOT be any registration the day before the event.


The cost is free but please bring one of the following to the start line which will be donated to the Lakeview Pantry (

  • Canned tuna/salmon/chicken
  • Shelf stable juice
  • Cereal and oatmeal
  • Coffee (No K-Cups)
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Single-ride CTA passes

Time Limits and Cutoffs:

There will be a 3-hour time limit for the race. Please notify an aid station volunteer or race official if you intend to drop out of the race. Volunteers may be able to assist you with transportation back to the Start/Finish area if needed.

Course Markings:

The course itself will be marked with chalk arrows especially near forks-in-the-path, merging paths and at the turnaround points. These ground markings (chalked directional arrows) will guide you. Look for the sample at the start as to how the markings will look. Each mile will be marked with chalk on the path and a direction arrow. Along the course, there will be a course marshal on a bike who will randomly monitor the race and assist runners if necessary.

Gear Check:

There will be a tarp near the Start/Finish area to leave drop bags. These bags will remain there throughout the race. We cannot be responsible for lost items, so please do not include anything of value. Unclaimed items will be donated to charity.


There will be a clock at the start/finish and a race official who will document your time. Official results will be available on our Facebook page on Monday, August 14th.

After Event Fun:

After the Half Marathon, everyone is invited to the Chicago Park District’s Clock Tower Cafe at 10:15 a.m for some food (at your own expense). It's just a very short walk from the Totem Pole and is located at 3600 N Recreation Drive. For more information, go to

Chicago Parks / Safety Issues:

This course will weave through a long, narrow strip of parkland known as Lincoln Park. The entire shoreline of Chicago is a multi-use park, shared by runners, bikers, bladers, boaters, golfers, fishermen, museum goers, dog walkers and every other form of leisure, pedestrian traffic.

On the race day, as every day, the park will be open to the public. Please be aware of this and use common sense and caution when negotiating the various paths throughout the park. The general public will probably be unaware that a race is in progress since we are small in number compared to larger 5K and 10K running races in Chicagoland. Park patrons are generally friendly and cheerful and you can expect them to yield the path if they see you coming. Please run defensively and give a wide berth or verbal warning when passing from behind.


Summer weather forecasting in Chicago is guesswork at best. We assume the weather will be warm and be precipitation free. However, we reserve the right to end the race early or cancel the event if bad weather threatens the safety of the runners. You will be notified via email of any cancellation by 6 AM on race morning. Be sure to check your email before you leave for the event.

Volunteer Information:

Volunteers needed! If you are able to help staff aid stations or other areas on race day, please send an e-mail to Corbin Woodling at with your contact information, and include Volunteer in your subject line. Thank you!

More Information:

e-mail: Corbin Woodling at


By signing up for this event, you agree to the following:

I certify that I know that participating in a running/walking event is a potentially hazardous activity. I should not enter unless I am medically able and properly trained. I agree to abide by a decision of a race official relative to my ability to safely complete the run/walk. I assume all risks associated with running/walking in this event including but not limited to: falls, contact with other participants, the effects of the weather, including low temperature/high heat and/or humidity, traffic, and the conditions of the course, all risk being known and appreciated by me. Having read this waiver and knowing these facts and in consideration of my entry, I, for myself, and anyone entitled to act on my behalf, waive and release Frontrunners/Frontwalkers Chicago and its Officers, the City of Chicago, Chicago Park District, and members of the Chicago Park District Board, and the officers, agents, and employees of the Chicago Park District, individually and collectively, Chicago Area Runners Association, USATF/Illinois, and all other sponsors, individuals, and volunteers associated with the event, their representatives and successors and all claims of liabilities of any kind arising out of my participation in this event. I attest and verify that I am physically fit and have sufficiently trained for the event, that I have examined the race course and find it to be in acceptable condition for my use. I understand that there are no refunds or transfers, even in the case of event cancellation due to unforeseen circumstances or acts of nature. I realize that pictures taken at the race can be used for race marketing materials and I consent that my image may be used.

Rainbow Half Marathon Motto:
"Anything worth doing is worth doing halfway."

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Totem Pole

3510 North Recreation Drive

Chicago, IL 60657

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