The annual Novant Health Wilmington NC Marathon returns in 2023, with the largest number of runners yet. Over 4,000 people from 45 states and three countries will take part in the flat and fast course, which begins at Wrightsville Beach and ends downtown Saturday morning. In 2022, there were 3,300 participants. On Saturday, competitors ranging in age from 1 to 83 will compete.

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Wilmington marathon route:

The most notable change is that this year’s run will include a longer downtown section on Front Street, which was previously under construction.

Due to the fact that it is a point-to-point competition with few turns and a largely flat course, 21% of competitors have previously qualified for the Boston Marathon.

The marathon, half-marathon, and relay events will all start at Wrightsville Beach’s Johnnie Mercer Pier and travel through Wilmington’s Eastwood Road, Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway, and Front Street. A circle around Greenfield Lake sends marathon competitors back onto Front Street before they finish on Wilmington’s Downtown Riverwalk. The goal of the free 1-mile race is to get runners 14 and younger involved in the marathon weekend.

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Race timings:

The shuttle service will begin at 4:30.

The last bus leaves downtown at 6:30 a.m.

Half and full marathons, as well as the marathon relay, begin at Johnny Mercer Pier in Wrightsville Beach at 7:30 am.

The Riverfront Park 5K will begin at 7:10 am downtown.

5K Awards will begin at 9:00 am.

Half Marathon Awards will take place at 10:00 a.m.

Marathon and Relay Awards will take place at 11:00 am.  at

Class Cutoff at 1:20 pm.

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Road closures and traffic delays:

While roads will be open for traffic throughout the day, several detours have been planned. The marathon course through downtown is open until 1:20 p.m., so expect some delays.

Here are the races that race organisers in the area recommend you avoid.

Eastwood and Wrightsville from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Before 8 a.m., take Oleander to College to Eastwood.

From 6:45 a.m. to 8:00 a.m., Eastwood and Military Cutoff will be closed. Before 8 a.m., take Oleander to College to Eastwood.