FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: David Brooks
God's Country Marathon:
Small Marathon: A Scenic Challenge
Rated one of the Top Ten Toughest Marathons in the Country,
the God's Country Marathon located in scenic Potter County,
Pennsylvania is a true "Runner's Race."
COUDERSPORT, PA - Every year as runners cross the finish line in the small
town of Coudersport, Pennsylvania, they say, 'I love to run this course!-
No crowds. Beautiful scenery. Top-notch service. One of the most
challenging courses in the country.
The God's Country Marathon, located in rural Potter County, Pennsylvania,
is one of the most beautiful - and challenging - point to point marathons
The course runs west on scenic U.S. Route 6 from the small community of
Galeton (elevation 1,300 ft.) through the heart of the Susquehannock State
Forest, to the town of Coudersport (elevation 1,400 ft.).
Mile 14 marks the beginning of a three-mile climb up infamous Denton Hill,
which traverses the eastern continental divide topping out at an elevation
2,424 ft. From there, it is all downhill into historic downtown
Coudersport, where gift baskets filled with locally produced maple syrup,
candies, handmade soaps and wood products are handed out to division
winners. Cash prizes are awarded to the top three male and female
For over 30 years, this little marathon has been attracting
challenge-seeking runners from across the nation.
'The area is beautiful. The course is beautiful. The hill is the hill,-
said Gary Dennis, overall men's winner in 2000 and 2001.
In the late 1990's, Runner's World magazine included God's Country Marathon
in an article featuring the 'Top Ten Toughest Marathons in the Country.-
In January 2005, Runner's World declared it one of the 'Best Little
Marathons- for the extra attention paid to the runners.
'Runner's First! - is our motto,- explained race director Kim Mitchell.
'The safety and overall experience of the people who run the race is our
The special services that the organizers provide the runners are available
even before the race begins. A spaghetti dinner is held at the local fire
department on Friday night. The runners can 'carb-up,- pick up their race
number and goodie-bag and visit with fellow runners. The morning of the
race, a shuttle bus is available to transport runners to the start, so they
can run back to their cars. During the race, water stations are located
every mile. After the runners cross the finish line, a buffet of hot and
cold foods awaits, along with transportation to the nearby Wellness Center
for free showers.
Over the past five years, attendance for the God's Country Marathon has
doubled. Some say the sport is simply making a comeback, others say runners
are seeking lower-key races to avoid the shoulder-to-shoulder, 10,000-plus
registration for which the Boston and Marine Corps marathons are known.
Mitchell believes the marathon is growing because of good old fashion
In 2002, there were only 98 runners who participated. 'We conducted runner
surveys after the race, and we learned exactly what was needed to enhance
the experience of the race,- said Mitchell. 'Every year since then, we have
been adding and changing different aspects based on the feedback.
'In addition, we encourage every volunteer, every business and every
citizen to become involved and take that extra step to provide an
exceptional experience for the runners.
'I have the utmost respect for the runners who compete here,- said
Mitchell. 'They deserve the royal treatment.-
Saturday, June 2nd, 2007 will mark the 33rd year for the marathon.
Attendance for the race is expected to be around 250 runners.