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Get ready for 2023 Chicago Marathon! Routes, races, and parking info  

  • October Events
  • Silas Smith
  • 6 minutes

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It is time to gear up for the Chicago Marathon, one of the biggest Marathons in the world. More runners will join in every year to grab that prize money. More people mean fewer parking slots. Read more for information about the races and parking on race day.  

Chicago Marathon Parking

What is the Chicago Marathon?  

Each October, the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is a road race held in Chicago. This race is one of the six major marathons globally, which brings top runners from around the globe to Chicago. Apart from professionals, some runners represent various charities and causes. In 2023, the 45th edition of the marathon will take place.

When is the Chicago Marathon 2023?  

Chicago Marathon 2022

You can participate or witness the official Chicago Marathon on Sunday, October 8, 2023.  

Where will the race happen?  

The race will start and end at Grant Park. Spectators can stop at various points to cheer on their favorite runners. Keep an eye on the official site for the route of the Chicago Marathon.   

How many miles is the Chicago Marathon?  

Chicago Marathon start

The runners will cover a distance of 26.2 miles and will run through 29 neighborhoods.   

What time does the Chicago marathon start?  

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon will have multiple waves for the main race. Also, the wheelchair races for men and women will start earlier than the main race. The starting times for the wheelchair races for men and women will start at 7:20 am and 7:21 am, respectively. Also, the handcycle race will begin at 7:23 am. 

Wave 1 of the footrace will begin at 7:30 am, Wave 2 at 8 am, and Wave 3 at 8:35 am. Spectators can enter Grant Park from 9:30 am. You can read the schedule for the marathon and pre-race events here.      

How to get to Grant Park

You can drive 0.3 miles via East Ida B. Wells Drive and S Columbus Dr to reach the park from Downtown Chicago.  

How much does it cost to participate?

The applicant must provide their credit card information during the registration. The entry fee will be processed once they are selected. For US citizens (including the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and other US territories), the fee is $230, and for non-US residents, it is $240.  

Is there parking at Grant Park?  

Yes, you can park in Grant Park on-site parking slots. The Grant Park Parking Garage South is one of the many parking spots in Grant Park. But these limited slots will fill up fast, and you will have to pay a high fee too.  

Can you park near Grant Park?  

Grant Park Chicago parking spots

You can get easy and affordable parking near Grant Park before the marathon. Use the Way.com website or Way mobile app to book your Chicago parking spot with huge discounts. Here are a few parking slots that are within a mile:  

What are the best places to watch the runners?

The spectators are not allowed to enter the start and finish areas of the marathon on race day. So, moving to different areas in the course to watch the race is better. There are cheer zones for fans to support the runners. 

Grand Avenue near Columbus Drive and State Street is one of the best places to cheer the runners at the start of the race. State Street, which is between Grand Avenue and Jackson Boulevard, offers the best views in Mile 1 of the marathon. 

If you want to view the runners closer to the finish of the main race, there is the Cheer Zone at Michigan Avenue and Roosevelt Road. Similar to these, there are many Cheer Zone throughout the course of the race, like the ones at Lincoln Park and Charity Block Party. 

Chicago Marathon runner tracking

You can join the viewers, which includes mariachi bands and dancers at different viewing points. Pilsen, Northalsted, and Chinatown neighborhoods are some other points where you can enjoy the marathon. 

Runner tracking is also possible using the official Chicago marathon map app. The spectators can also use this app to move into different spots. You can also use the Chicago Transit Authority trains to move from one point to the other. You can find accessible parking at each of the cheering points too.

What are the essentials for the race?  

Chicago Marathon map

The participants can pick up their packets containing the bib number, participant bag, running shirt, and timing device on the days before the race. If you are a spectator wear something comfortable to counter the sun. Also, a cap and sunscreen are a must to save you from the heat. The friends and family of the participants can enjoy Chicago by taking part in the Abbott Chicago 5K, a 3.1-mile race on October 8. The runners can also see this as a warm-up opportunity.  


Can I still apply for the Chicago Marathon 2023? 

No. The application process for guaranteed and non-guaranteed spots for the 2023 Chicago Marathon closed on November 17, 2022. But there are limited guaranteed spots available through the charity program. 

Can anyone do the Chicago Marathon? 

All participants must be 16 or more to participate in Chicago Marathon. Also, there is an application process to run the race. 

Where does the Chicago Marathon start and finish? 

Bank of America Chicago Marathon starts and finishes at Grant Park. The course travels through the city and around 29 neighborhoods. 

How many hours do you have to complete the Chicago Marathon? 

All participants will have six hours and thirty minutes to complete the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. 

How old should I be to run Chicago Marathon? 

All participants of the Chicago Marathon must be 16 or more to apply. Marathoners aged 16 and 17 must have permission from their parents or guardian to apply for the race. 

How many people will run Chicago Marathon in 2023? 

About 45,000 people are expected to participate in the upcoming 2023 Chicago Marathon. The field is capped at 45,000 by the marathon organizers. 

How to run Chicago Marathon without qualifying? 

Charity Program and International Tour Program will allow you to run the race without qualifying. 

How much money does the Chicago Marathon bring to the city? 

According to nbcchicago.com, the marathon generated over $378 million for Chicago’s economy in 2018. In addition, the race created 2,592 jobs which led to $127 million in wages income. Also, $154 million came into the Chicago tourism industry due to the 2018 marathon. 

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