COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH)– After a one year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon is planning for an in-person race October 17.

All 10 members of the organization’s board of trustees voted to move ahead with the 2021 race, according to a press release.

The release also states that race organizers have been working with state and local health officials to ensure the event is safe, and a number of factors are still being decided, including the event size, course, and layout of the start and finish areas.

“This is the first step. We don’t have all the final details yet worked out with the city and the state and all the all the entities we work with, but we wanted to get the process started, because this is normally when we would be doing that anyway,” explained race director Darris Blackford.

The Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon supports Nationwide Children’s Hospital raising more than $10 million dollars since 2012 when NCH became the title beneficiary.

“It used to just be a bunch of crazy runners and walkers who took over the city and got in the way,” said Blackford. “Now that we’re partnered with the hospital since 2012, people are really understanding, and it became more of a community event. And to be able to help those kids and help that hospital, it’s, it’s added that level of emotion.”

We’ve raised more than $10 million since 2012, more than a million a year, and people will come out and say I never thought I could run or walk a marathon or half marathon, but I’m going to do it for those kids…. I always get choked up about what we’re able to do for those kids

Darris Blackford, Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon Race Director

Registration for the 26.2-mile and 13.1-mile races opens June 1. For more information, visit