My Husband, the 50 States Finisher!

June 21st was a big day for Scot. We traveled to Duluth MN where we ran Grandma’s Marathon and Scot completed his 50th state. I had been to Grandma’s in 2012 with Elizabeth, Michelle and Sarah, and Minnesota was the only state I held over Scot. No longer.

At Grandma's 2012 with Elizabeth and Michelle. We missed the start for the 5K, so we had beer instead!

The decision to return to Grandma’s was mainly because of what worked well on Scot’s calendar, in relation to other states he needed to finish up, and also because it’s a well-managed race that draws a lot of Marathon Maniacs and 50 States Marathon Club members.

Scot and I arrived at MSP early, and immediately took our rental car to the Minnesota State Capitol for the obligatory photo with Magenta. Just for fun, we earned a nice parking ticket from the city of St. Paul. Afterward, we returned to the airport to pick up Abbi and drive together to Duluth.

Magenta the Road Trip Flamingo at the Minnesota state house

Our first stop in Duluth was the expo, where we saw lots of folks we know, and where Abbi and I made multiple stops at the wine booth. After spending too much time at the expo, we headed over to Grandma’s Saloon (original sponsor of the marathon) for a pre-race dinner and celebration of Scot’s 50th state.

I think Scot liked the cake, and he made sure everyone in the restaurant helped us eat the leftovers!

A great group of Maniacs at our pre-race dinner for Scot; some others came later for the celebration
After dinner, it was back to the hotel, which we shared with Kerri. All the hotels in Duluth seem to jack up the room rates for Grandma’s weekend, and we saw that in our $200/night rate at the Econolodge Airport. Yes…the Econolodge was $200 in Duluth MN. We got to bed and then arose early to drive to the finish area and catch the train to the start, in Two Harbors MN. We could have ridden a bus, but the train was unique and fun.

Maniacs on the train (plus an innocent non-crazy marathoner in the white jacket)

The train we took from downtown Duluth to the start in Two Harbors

The start area was a zoo, which I recalled from 2012. We didn’t find the official Maniac pre-start pic, so we took some of our own.

We missed the official Maniac pic, so we made our own

Nilda and Scot at the start

With joggler Barry at the start

I thought the marathon was fun. I did not have a time goal, so at times I slowed down or sped up to run with friends. My injuries did not hold me back, and I was feeling good. Unfortunately, the weather was extremely foggy and we couldn’t see the scenic views as we ran for nearly 19 miles along Lake Superior. So, instead of scenery, we just made our own fun. I didn’t see Scot between the start and finish, but at various times I ran with various friends, and apparently I took a lot of pictures!

There was lots of hanky-panky on the course, not just in this pic or with these Maniacs!

My elite friends Nilda and Abbi

Abbi and Jennifer took a hot dog break; we also had a couple beer breaks

Lotsa Maniacs and 50 Staters on course!

More Maniacs and 50 Staters inside the on-course candy shop
Scot finished before me and was waiting as I crossed the finish line. He had already changed into his well-earned 50 States Marathon Finisher shirt. After numerous photos and time spent in the finish chute, Abbi and I headed to the beer tent, and Scot went off on his own. There was good beer! Not just the usual Michelob Ultra! And the sun came out. We could finally see the lake, and we even got sun burned. Eventually, Scot came back to the beer tent and we also met up with Ed.

Me, Scot and Abbi at the finish; wish the weather had been this gorgeous all day!

Proud of my 50 States Club finisher husband!
After the marathon and sitting in the sun, we were beat. We decided not to go out for dinner, but then changed our minds. We went to Sammy’sPizza and had a good dinner with friends.

Post-race dinner with another set of friends

The next morning, Scot, Abbi and I headed back to MSP, but not before making a few stops. We stopped at Starbucks for some coffee and randomly met newly minted Maniac Shasten. Then we drove across the bridge to Superior WI so Scot could take a picture of the Minnesota welcome sign, which is one of his road trip traditions. Finally, we were able to meet up with Ruth and family for a quick drive-by hug. Ruth had run Grandma’s before, but this time she drove up from Winona MN to volunteer.

Taken the day after the race, but shows what kind of fog we had on marathon day

Big congratulations to Scot for finishing his 50 states, and to everyone who earned a new state in Minnesota. I enjoyed Grandma’s Marathon weekend for the second time and I suppose I do still have Minnesota over Scot – I’ve done it twice to his once!


  1. Scot...many congrats on being a 50 Stater. But surely you remember..."The cake is a lie." ;> /


    1. Well, he had no idea there was going to be cake waiting for him in Minnesota, so I suppose it didn't matter much. It was amusing to see Scot walking up to random tables of strangers and offering them cake. There were several takers!


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