The Austin Marathon has been reduced to a half marathon and postponed to April 25.
The change was announced on social media after organizers of the Ascension Seton Austin Marathon met with city officials and health experts, and came to the conclusion that holding the event in February as originally planned would be too risky under the pandemic. Separately, the 3M Half Marathon, set to happen in January, has been canceled.
The KXAN Simple Health 5K and the Manzano Mile will be held alongside the marathon, which is known as the 2021 Ascension Seton Austin Marathon.
The event's organizers, High Five Events, said in a release that they were "optimistic" that the planned runs could be held in-person based on conversations with the City of Austin and Austin Public Health. Other marathons this year have been held virtually.
"Extensive mitigation plans for the new event date have been compiled and are based on the Austin-Travis County COVID-19 Risk-Based Guidelines Stages 1-4," High Five Events wrote in the release. "These were difficult decisions to make, but the health and well-being of our participants, staff, and community will always be our first priority."
The change angered some on social media, but others have decided to forge ahead.
I’m still running it on Valentine’s Day as planned. And I’m still going to shoot for under 3 hours. And we’re still… https://t.co/X2jeuV5whr— Nate Boyer (@Nate Boyer)1605734404.0
Marathon participants can transfer their spot to the new date for free, or defer to the marathons in 2022, 2023 or 2024. 3M Half Marathon runners can also defer to another year for free.
The Run Austin Virtual series, a way for marathon runners to participate without large groups, will be extended through April.
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