The variety of half marathons run in Minnesota will keep you coming back year after year. Below are the best half marathons in Minnesota as rated by runners of the events.
Mankato Half Marathon - Mankato
Trip Advisor has named this the top Half Marathon worth traveling for in Minnesota, so you know it's a good one. This race has a little something for everybody, including a view of the prairie lands that sit just outside Mankato.
The course is a mixture of paved city streets and the Red Jacket Trail. The starting line is at Minnesota State University - Mankato, and from there the race proceeds to traverse a large point-to-point course that includes sections near the Minnesota River.
Image source: Mankato Marathon
"My first Mankato Half and I think was one of the best ever. Organization, kit pick up, Expo and the race. Everything was great! And one of the most fan and cheerful race that I ever ran.year." - V.H., Facebook Review
"Great course, great volunteers! Very nice and welcoming to first time runners. Lots of cheering groups and great organization." - C.K., Facebook Review
Minneapolis Half Marathon
This race offers a panorama of Minneapolis and its attractive riverside parks. You can feel great about running this race: the proceeds from this race go to Team Ortho, which seeks to raise awareness about maladies affecting bones and joints.
The course begins north of the lake in Wirth Park, then proceeds on a point-to-point course offering runners great views of the Mississippi River.
Image source: Minneapolis Half Marathon
"Gorgeous course! Very hilly for a half marathon. It was run well and enjoyed it," - E.O., Bibrave.com Review
"Team Ortho put on a great event, and I hope to see this one grow in the years to come. Overall, the organizer's attention to detail is evident on race day." - D.L., Marathonguide.com Review
Bemidji Blue Ox Half Marathon
The Bemidji Blue Ox Half celebrates the sights and scenery of the lakes of Bemidji, Minnesota. The race is named after the famous sidekick of the Great North Woodsman himself, Paul Bunyan.
The course takes runners around Lake Bemidji, where they are treated to the beautiful fall scenery of Minnesota. On the south end of the lake, runners catch a glimpse of the famous statue of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox. Overall, the course is mostly flat with some hills. The course covers paved roads and trails.
Image source: Bemidji Blue Ox Marathon
"Overall, this is actually one of my favorite MN races and I would definitely recommend it for someone who enjoys nature, plus the medal is fun!" - K.L., Bib Rave Review
"The race atmosphere was very supportive and I would love to race there again in the future." - A.W., Bib Rave Review
Grandma's Half Marathon - Duluth
This is a great opportunity to view the beauty of Lake Superior and the rolling hills of Minnesota. This is a small-town race with a big-city feel, with live entertainment and music along the race route.
The race is run between the cities of Duluth and Two Harbors. Enjoy gently rolling hills along paved surfaces with 6,000 of your closest friends. The point-to-point course concludes in Canal Park.
Image source: Grandma's Marathon
"The organizers, volunteers, and people of Duluth over-all deserve a pat on the back for an outstanding effort to make this a fantastic experience for runners and spectators." - E.C., Marathonguide.com Review
"In all - I can't recommend this event highly enough. It's a wonderful event and one that I will likely do again." - C.H., Yelp Review
Lake Minnetonka Half Marathon - Wayzata
This is a gorgeous race in central southern Minnesota, not far from Minneapolis. One of the premier half marathons in the State of Minnesota.
The race is point-to-point course along the bays and inlets of Lake Minnetonka, beginning on Wayzata's Superior Blvd. and proceeding along the shore of the lake in a counter-clockwise fashion.
"All in all this was a great race. The race was hilly, but only about four of the hills were anything to write home about. The race support was great and the course was pretty. The shirts and medals were first-rate. I will definitely do this race again, but hopefully under less humid conditions." - B.H., Marathonguide.com Review
"I would recommend this race to anyone for a first half marathon. The course was gorgeous but was filled with rolling hills. The communication with race officials was good with the weather conditions." - Amy, Blogger at Destroying Dead Ends Blog
Red White and Boom! - Minneapolis
Celebrate the birth of the United States on the 4th of July in the American Midwest. The Red White and Boom takes you through the streets of the Twin Cities. This is a race with something for everybody.
The out-and-back course begins and ends on Main Street Northeast near St. Anthony Falls. After mile 5, the loop course continues onto St. Anthony Parkway before reaching the highest point in Demming Park. The race then proceeds downhill to the river and back to the start.
Image source: TCM Events
""Overall this race goes on my list of favorites. I am biased because I got to be there with my friends but thinking just about the race it was well organized, has nice swag, a pretty and challenging course, a nice start and finish area and plenty of course support"" - Bean, blogger at Just Plodding Along
""It was a great race– great course and TCM is easily becoming my favorite race organization. They just keep things simple, straightforward, professional, and still fun."" - Kate, blogger at Kate Runs This
Minnesota Half Marathon - St. Paul
The race organizers themselves say it best: "The RBC Race for the Kids Minnesota Half Marathon is an event for everyone! Whether you are running in shoes or gliding on skates. Sign up for an event that suits your interests or goals or maybe even try something new this year. There’s a half marathon, half marathon relay and 6K run as well as a half marathon skate." That's right, in this race you have the option of skating the half marathon!
Run a loop course along the banks of the Mississippi River beginning at Lower Landing Park and running out and back before returning to Lower Landing. Get a glimpse of the planes taking off and landing as you approach the finish line.
"About as perfect a course you can ask for." - Randy Bunker, Runner's World Review
"The Minnesota Half Marathon course itself was pretty. We started along the river south of downtown St. Paul and ran a couple miles northeast before turning around and heading southwest. We stayed on Shepard Road for several miles before turning around for the finish. An out-and-back style race isn’t always my favorite, but the scenery along the Mississippi River was just another reminder that we live in a beautiful area. There were some beautiful sites. The rolling hills and abundance of trees left me feeling all the more fond of this part of the state." - Sarah, MinneapolisRunning.com Review