NEED TO TRANSFER TO A DIFFERENT DISTANCE?
Yes, you CAN transfer to a different distance . There is a $5.00 transfer admin fee (and difference in race fee if you are transferring to a longer distance event).
The transfer deadline has been extended until 9:30am on race morning, please come to the Solutions table to Pay the $5.00 transfer fee
Click HERE for the latest details on Distance Transfers
VOLUNTEERING - FAMILY AND FRIENDS NOT RUNNING?
We need your help!
Participants, we are in need of some help for volunteers at the event. Banff is a very small community (only 7500 people) so drawing volunteers for the many events held here is very challenging – we could use the help of your friends and family if they would like to pitch in!
Volunteers will receive:
The famous commemorative Melissa's Road Race long sleeve technical shirt!
A post-race beer or other beverage
Over $5000 in draw prizes
Satisfaction of supporting the athletes and official event charities
If any of your friends or family are available to help us out, we would greatly appreciate that. Please contact: email@example.com
Or click here to sign up for a shift: VOLUNTEER
REMINDER: RACE BIBS CAN NOT BE SOLD OR TRANSFERRED
Selling your race bib, or having another person use your bib in the event is strictly prohibited. This act may seem well intentioned but has many negative implications to the organizers and participants including liability, timing, results, awards and many other factors. Race bibs will only be given out to those who have registered for the event. If a registrant sells or gives away their race bib to another participant, they will not be allowed to participate in future events.
MELISSA'S RACE SHIRTS
Melissa's Road Race is famous for it's race shirts! In fact it may be one of the most famous collections of race shirts in the world. Do you still have some of your Melissa's Road Race shirts? We encourage you to wear your favourite Mel's shirt or wear the new beautiful 2022 race shirt!
Your passport to adventure! Explore soaring peaks, turquoise lakes, delicious cuisine, and endless activities, across more than 6,000 square km of wilderness in Banff National Park alone, with your Parks Canada Pass. If you’re entering Banff National Park by personal vehicle, a park pass is required. We suggest purchasing your National Park Pass online prior to arrival for express entry into the park.
IMPORTANT COURSE NOTES
Please see below for route updates and important considerations for your route. The race start will be well-announced, and the course will be well marked but it is ultimately your responsibility to know when and where you start, and the directions of your run route. The information below will assist you with this.
The Start/Finish area and event site will be back on the main sports field at the Banff Recreation Grounds (in 2021, the adjacent ball diamond fields were used). The Recreation Grounds can now be easily accessed by walking over the new pedestrian bridge from Banff Central Park (*please do not drive across the Banff Avenue vehicle bridge because there is no parking available on the south side of the river and there will be long waits to get back across the bridge). The race routes will all start and finish in the same location as previous years (Sundance Road, Banff Recreation Grounds). The starts of each distance are also the same with the 5K/10K routes heading out over Banff Ave Bridge, and the 21K route heading out Glen Ave to the Golf Course Road.
Banff Ave Pedestrian Zone – Single Lane
The 5K and 10K races will travel across the Banff Ave Bridge and along famous Banff Avenue. This year, Banff Ave is a Pedestrian Zone (vehicle free) from Buffalo Street to Wolf Street. The runners will pass through the Pedestrian Zone (very fun!) in a single lane by the shops and patios on Banff Ave. In preparation for the Pedestrian Zone, it will be necessary for the runners to narrow to a single lane width as they run across the bridge in advance of the Pedestrian Zone. Once in the Pedestrian zone, runners should be careful of potential tripping hazards along the sides of the single lane.
Race Starts - Distancing - IMPORTANT!
The 5K and 10K races will start together at 10:30am. There will be pace signs so please line up near your estimated pace and leave yourself lots of space for the rolling start. This year there will be a lot more space as the runners can spread out down the entire length of Sundance Road. Half Marathon runners will stay on the field or on the gravel road around the corner until called to the starting area. Once the 5k/10k runners have left there will be a few minutes until the start of the Half at about 10:45am or shortly before. The chip in your bib has been assigned to the race distance you are registered for so please do not run a different distance or your race bib will be automatically disqualified and there are also complications that negatively affect the race with division results/placings and safety. ***Please note it is important that everyone move briskly to get over the Banff Ave Bridge (5k/10k) and past Glen Ave (Half) because these roads are closed and need to reopen very quickly.
5K and 10K Turns
The 5k and 10k runs will start together and at approximately 1.8km into the course (when the runners reach Muskrat St. and Caribou St.), the 10k runners will turn left and the 5k runners will continue straight. 5k Runners - remember if you follow the 10k runners at this turn, you will be running up Tunnel Mountain on the 10k course! 10k runners – make sure you turn here or you will be following the 5k course and be disqualified at the finish line. The 5k and 10k runners will come back together on the pathway to the Pedestrian bridge (approx. 2km into the run for the 5k runners, and at the 7km mark for the 10k runners). All runners will travel across the Pedestrian Bridge. Confused? Check out the MAP. Still confused? Don't worry - it will be well marked and clear – just look for signage and marshals.
Half Marathon Loops
Half Marathon runners! Once you reach the end of the golf course road (at approx. 5km in to the run) you will need to complete two x 5km loops before you return back along the golf course road towards the finish. Don't forget to run your second loop! Timing mats will be in place to keep track of everyone.
OFFICIAL POST RACE PARTY
Celebrate in Style after the Run at Melissa’s
Free Event! The Official Post Race Party of Melissa's Road Race is downtown Banff at Melissa’s Missteak Bar and Grill on Saturday night!
The party will feature live music with recording artist, Shannon Smith. Her music is influenced by the poise and traditionalism of Lorrie Morgan, the showmanship and flare of Shania Twain and the strength of Sheryl Crow. No genre is off limits, whether it be driving country or classic rock, as is evident by her medleys of 80’s and modern dance hits. She has graced the stage of several top-notch venues and events throughout Alberta, including the Big Valley Jamboree and the Alberta Pro Rodeo circuit. Shannon has opened for Canadian country recording artist Chad Brownlee as well as super group Lonestar, Johnny Reid, Duane Steele, Julian Austin and Aaron Pritchett.
The party will also include some amazing draw prizes. This is a free and un-ticketed event so get there early to ensure your spot.
Dinner is available from the menu.
The party gets going at 6pm!
Celebrate your race in style with your fellow runners. See you there!
FRIENDLY REMINDER - NO STROLLERS OR PETS
Banff National Park is a beautiful and unique location for a running event. However, this does present some challenges for the running course which is comprised of a combination of paved roads, paved and dirt trails, narrow sections, sharp turns and some curbs. For safety reasons, wheelchairs, baby joggers, strollers, Burleys, inline skates, bicycles, and pets can NOT be permitted on the course. Participants that bring any of the aforementioned items to the start line will not be permitted to start and will be disqualified. Thank you for understanding and respecting the safety of all participants in the event.
PARKING AND SHUTTLES
The Town of Banff is very limited with its parking opportunities and can get quite congested with traffic, especially with a large event such as Melissa’s so please read carefully below some options that will get you to the event on time and stress free.
***DO NOT TRY TO DRIVE TO THE START AREA OR ACROSS THE BANFF AVENUE BRIDGE – THERE IS NO PARKING OR DROP-OFF AREA AND THERE WILL BE LONG LINES TO GET BACK ACROSS THE BRIDGE***
Please read HERE for Parking and Shuttle info.
SHIRTS AND FINISHER MEDALS
Shirt Pick Up - This can only be done at the "Shirt Tent" on the race site. You can pick up your shirt before the race start on Saturday if you would like to wear it for the run, or after if you would like to keep it fresh and clean for post-race relaxing. There is a ticket on your race bib to claim your race shirt.
Finisher Medals - Many of you purchased a Finisher's Medal. These will be available after the race at a tent designated specifically for medals. If you ordered a medal, there will be a tag on your race bib that you will redeem for your medal. Didn't order a medal? We ordered a few extra so there will be a limited number of medals for sale ($10) after the race. Check at the tent!
RACE BIB MUST BE VISIBLE AND YOURS
At the beginning of the race start, please make sure your race bib can be seen. The race officials must be able to see your race bib otherwise you will be stopped. Anyone running without a race bib will be removed from the race immediately. You must also run in the distance you have registered for unless you have officially transferred. And, please remember, you can only run with your bib, and in the distance you registered for, or everyone is affected. Thanks!
Due to the unique character of Banff National Park, a wildlife interaction, although unlikely, could occur on the race route. The following are some resources you should review and may find helpful HERE
Headphones on Course
Please note the Event prohibits the use of devices/headphones for the participant’s safety and the safety of those around them. There is no risk of disqualification for simple use, however, if a participant puts themselves or other participants at risk, directly or indirectly through the use of these items, the Event Organizers reserve the right to disqualify the participant. We highly recommend that you choose not to wear headphones due to the unique environment of a national park where being able to hear the natural environment around you and wildlife is important. Many participants have told us they were glad they did not wear their earphones so they could truly enjoy the peaceful beauty of the park and the mountain experience.
Keeping to the Right on Trails and the Roads
Runners should be aware that there are narrow sections of the course on the Bow River Trails and at some other points on the course. Please stay on the far right side of the path/road and don’t run two abreast in narrow sections. This is especially important on the last 2 kilometers of the course with the 10K and Half Marathon runners approaching from behind. Be extra careful to stay to the right if you have headphones on as you will not hear other runners approaching from behind. You should always stay to the far right side of the trail/road unless otherwise directed. And please note that Glenn Ave will have 2-way runner traffic (divided by delineators) so please always stay to the right and do not run on the left side of the delineators (especially at the start of the Half Marathon and the end of the 5K on Glen Ave).
COURSE NUTRITION, HYDRATION AND WASTE
As per the direction of Parks Canada, the Melissa's Road Race does not offer any sport drink on the course. This is to reduce the potential of a wildlife interaction because sport drink, with its high sugar content, is an attractant to wildlife. If you feel you need calories on the course, please carry these with you responsibly and please DO NOT dump or discard any nutritional products or waste on the ground, it must be dumped into the waste bins.
GARBAGE ON COURSE - ***Important, please read…
During the run, ALL waste must be deposited at the nearest Aid Station. Participants CANNOT drop any waste (cups, gels, wrappers etc.) anywhere along the course (including KM markers or any other spots – even if you believe it will be found by organizers or see that others have done it). Aid Stations are located at least every 2-3km, and disposal bins will be located for you to drop your garbage. Any participant leaving waste along the course other than at the designated aid stations will be immediately disqualified and asked to leave the course. This is very important for wildlife protection and the safety of the participants and will be patrolled by monitors on bicycles and vehicles. Please remember that Littering in a National Park is an offence and can be fined under the National Parks Act, but more importantly, respect the environment and opportunity to run in this special place. Thank you
BYOB: BRING YOUR OWN WATER BOTTLE
Rather than just using the cups we will provide along the route, athletes are encouraged to bring their own water bottles on race day. There will be 6 aid stations along the route and volunteers are happy to assist with refilling bottles. It is one of the ways athletes can take an active role in being responsible and implementing the new sustainability programs in the event!
VIRTUAL EVENT BAG - PLEASE READ!
Check out what's waiting for you inside your Virtual Event Bag! There is race information and amazing deals for the weekend, valuable coupons and fun activities for you and your family to check out!
The Virtual Event Bag will be e-mailed to each participant and you can check back here for updated links to the bag:
SHARE YOUR PICTURES ON SOCIAL MEDIA
We want you to see your pictures and experiences - please share! We will have great prizes. The pictures are not judged, they are entered into a contest draw. Tag us on one of our event social media pages and also include the feed:
SUSTAINABILITY AT MELISSA'S
A priority of the 2022 Melissa’s Road Race is to implement some of the world-leading programs that the Banff Marathon currently utilizes to be the “Greenest Marathon on the Planet”. The strategy in 2022 is to reduce the environmental footprint and mitigate where we can’t. This year’s programs include:
Toward Zero Waste (TZW) – to lower the amount of waste and divert as much as possible from landfill. The goal is 90% ! Please do your part.
Melissa’s will eliminate the use of 10,000 single serve plastic water bottles.
Elimination of plastic participant bags by adding the electronic Virtual Event Bag
Sustainability Education and Awareness to Participants, Suppliers, Sponsors and others by education, electronic and other. The best example we can give of this is at every TZW station we encourage the runners and guests to self sort the waste into 5 to 7 different bags. While this process is happening we discuss where each stream of waste ends up and how it is managed.
Adding bio-digestible cups that are corn based and degrade very quickly back in to the earth is an example of how easy it is to make a change.
Encouraging participants and volunteers to bring their own water bottles
Encouraging athletes to transit, carpool, bike and run to the event
During the race, only participants with a race bib will be allowed on Golf Course Road, Tunnel Mountain Road, and Tunnel Mountain Drive. Please tell your friends and family not to drive, cycle or walk to these areas. These areas can be narrow and environmentally sensitive so for the safety of everyone please let everyone know not to travel to these sections of the course as they will be denied entry (tell them to sign up for the run next year to gain access!). The runners are best viewed at the Banff Recreation Grounds at the main race site or in town along Banff Ave (for the 5K/10K) for the start of the run.
You are welcome to bring signs and cheer, but marking streets or paths with chalk is prohibited in the National Park.