Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably heard that Grandma's Marathon is fast approaching.  No, even if you've been under a rock you still know it's coming.  We know that THOUSANDS of people will soon flock to our cities by the sea--er--lake and bring money with them.  Money that they spend here!  Some residents flee, leaving for the weekend to avoid the traffic delays, the crowds, and the tourists.  Others stick around to cheer on runners, volunteer, and party!

What kind of numbers make up one of our most anticipated weekends?  Well, with the help of Bob Gustafson, Grandma's Marathon Public Relations Director, I'm going to break it down for you by the numbers.

17,411-The number of registered runners for Grandma's weekend races.  This includes Friday night's William A. Irvin 5k, and Saturday's Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon and Grandma's Full Marathon.

203-The number of men and women competing in the USA Half Marathon Championships – which Grandma’s Marathon is hosting this year.  (I'm not one of them.)

41- The number of countries represented during the marathon.

47- The number of states represented, and the District of Columbia.

3- The number of states not represented.  Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia.

4,359- The number of Minnesotans in the marathon.

5,985- The number of Minnesotans in the half marathon.

787- The number of Wisconsinites in the marathon.

789- The number of Wisconsinites in the half marathon. (One of those 789 is me!)

30-The number of registered half marathon runners in the 70+ age category.

32- The number of registered runners in the 70+ age category for the full marathon.

8,500,000- The number of dollars Grandma's Marathon brings in to the local economy anually.

6,000- The number of volunteers needed each year for Grandma's Marathon weekend.

8- The number of employees that work for the non-profit organization.

400,000- The number of Coca Cola cups used at the racecourse water stations.

5,000- Gallons of water used.

30,000- Sponges used on the racecourse.

100,000- The prize money purse awarded to the top finishers.

169,838- The number of Grandma's Marathon finishers in 35 years!

1- The number of half marathons I've finished.

2- The number of half marathons I hope to have under my belt on June 16th!

Those are some pretty impressive numbers!

Thank you to everyone that makes this incredible world-class event happen each year.  From the staff at Grandma's Marathon, the volunteers, the runners, and the spectators, everyone plays an important part in this awesome event. I hope to see you out there!