Twin Cities In Motion was founded in 1982 as Twin Cities Marathon, Inc. The name Twin Cities Marathon has dually represented our world-class running event and the group of dedicated staff and volunteers who have made each marathon spectacular since 1982. We’ve covered a lot of ground since then! Over time, the organization behind this event has changed. In 2009, we became Twin Cities In Motion, a positive reflection of our past and a foundation for our future, as we continue to serve our community by promoting healthy lifestyles through running events and community outreach. Our flagship event, the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, remains a top 10 U.S. marathon.
Recognized as The Most Beautiful Urban Marathon in America®, the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon is an iconic fall event for the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. The marathon grew from roots in both cities. The Minnesota Distance Running Association created the event’s earliest ancestor, the Land of Lakes Marathon, in 1963. Spectators outnumbered runners that inaugural year as just five participants, all male, made the 26.2 mile trek along Minneapolis’ streets and parkways. In 1976, the race was renamed the City of Lakes Marathon and moved to a four-lap course around Lake Calhoun and Lake Harriet. By 1981, with the running boom echoing across the country, the race took just a month to fill to its limit of 1,700 runners. In the same year, Minneapolis’ counterpart established its own marathon — the St. Paul Marathon — which followed a course around Minnesota’s capitol city. The race launched successfully, drawing approximately 2,000 runners in it first and only running.
In 1982, organizers from the St. Paul and City of Lakes marathons combined efforts to establish the Twin Cities Marathon. Race officials realized that a marathon which connected Minneapolis to St. Paul, combining the spectacular autumn beauty of both cities, would be a greater attraction than two competing marathons on either side of the Mississippi River. The inaugural Twin Cities Marathon attracted 4,563 entrants, which established an entry record for a first-time race in the United States.
In the 34 years since, the marathon has grown to a full weekend of events including the Medtronic TC 10 Mile race as a Sunday companion event to the marathon. In 1998, board members of what is now Twin Cities In Motion began searching for a race to add as a companion event to the marathon. While a half marathon initially seemed like a good option, adding a slightly shorter race quickly emerged as the best plan. A ten mile race allowed the same popular start and finish areas as the marathon, in addition to using the marathon course for more than half of the race's distance. Registration for the inaugural TC 10 Mile in 1999 opened with a 1,500-participant cap to allow organizers to gauge interest in the event. The race known as the “Shortcut to the Capitol®” caught on with Twin Cities runners as an alternative to the full marathon and quickly grew in popularity. In its second year, the ten mile field filled in a single day! The race shifted to a lottery registration system in 2001 in an effort to broaden access to the race. A tracking feature was introduced in 2010, giving runners who hadn’t been selected for two consecutive years guaranteed, non-complimentary entry to the race on the third year. Today, the Medtronic TC 10 Mile is one of the largest ten mile races in the country.
On the Saturday before the marathon and ten mile, runners can compete in the TC 10K and TC 5K, presented by Fredrikson & Byron, as well as the Medtronic TC Family Events, which celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2015. Read about the marathon and other TCM highlights in this Year-By-Year Marathon History.
Awards and Recognition
2005 - Otto Essig Award, USATF
2006 - President's Award, USATF
2006 - Third Most Competitive Course in the U.S., Running Times
2007 - Outstanding Achievement, Advocacy, Interactive Media Awards
2007 - Outstanding Achievement, Kids, Interactive Media Awards
2007 - Websites/Online Marketing Silver Award, Davey Awards, International Academy of the Visual Arts
2008 - Youth Running Event of the Year, Youth Runner Magazine & Running USA
2009 - Youth Running Program of the Year, Running USA & Youth Runner Magazine
2011 - The 7 Best Marathons in America, iExplore
2012 - MN Twins Attendance Award, Fifteen's 5K
2012 - World’s Best Marathons, Departures Magazine
2013 - Star Supporter Award, Bloomington Sister City Organization, Inc.
2014 - Top 10 Bucket List Marathon, Active
2014 - Event of the Year, Visit Saint Paul
2015 - 15 Fun, Fast and Beginner-Friendly Marathons, DailyBurn
2015 - The 15 Best Fall Marathons in the U.S., DailyBurn
2015 - Top 10 Bucket List Marathon, Runner's World
2015 - 15 Bucket List Marathons in the United States, Competitor.com
2015 - The World's 25 Best Marathons, TheActiveTimes.com
2016 - Editor's Choice, Top Fun Things to Do in Twin Cities
2016 - The World's 25 Best Marathons, TheActiveTimes.com
2016 - Facility of Merit Award, Road Race and Endurance Events, National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security
2017 - Best Road Race in Minnesota, Best of Minnesota, American Towns Media
2017 - Best Race That Lives Up to the Hype, Active