2015 Race Director Update #9


19th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon, April 24-26       

Full Marathon, Half Marathon & Relay, 5K, Health & Fitness Expo, Family Events & Kids Races


Race Director Update #9
2 weeks until Race Weekend

Thank you for registering for the 19th Annual Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon & Half Marathon weekend, which includes the 2015 RRCA New Jersey State Championship race in the marathon distance. In an effort to help make your participation more enjoyable throughout the entire race weekend, this is the ninth in a series of weekly messages containing important information. Copies of these messages will also be available on our Website and on our Blog. Links to them will be posted on both Facebook and Twitter.

New for 2015:

  • The Full, Half and Relay races will all start at 7:30 am this year.
  • There are NO Speed Restrictions for athletes in wheelchairs in the full marathon.
  • Special Race Day Buses from: NY Port Authority, Newark Penn Station, Rahway, Matawan, Middletown


Below is an important summary from Race Director Update #1:

Smooth Sailing Smooth Sailing on Race Day:

  1. Pre-Race: Carpool and be in the parking lots about 75-120 minutes before the race start (7:30 am), or take the Special NJ Marathon Race Day Transportation. Click here to register.
  1. Pre-paid parking at Monmouth Park: We strongly suggest the pre-paid option ($5) for these lots. Paying as you leave will cost $10 and will likely slow down your departure. Click here to register.
  1. Pre-paid parking near the Finish Area: Guaranteed Parking for spectators at 7-President’s Park is SOLD OUT.
  1. Post-Race: Getting home: Take a regularly scheduled NJ Transit train, (Please note: these trains do NOT stop at Monmouth Park), walk to your vehicle in one of the parking lots near the Finish Area, or take one of our free shuttle buses back to your vehicle at Monmouth Park.
  1. Race Day Gear Check: Take advantage of this free service for dry, warm clothing after your race!
  1. Race Packet Pick-up: Free at the Expo, paid service on race day morning. Click here to register for Will Call Service.
  1. Race Day Security Information for: Athletes, Spectators, Sponsors, Press, Volunteers & Race Staff should be reviewed prior to Race Day.

Smooth Sailing on April 25 th at the ShapingNJ 5K and the Barnabas Health Family Festival

  1. Parking for the ShapingNJ 5K and Barnabas Health Family Festival and Kids Races: Lots will be available in Pier Village for $5, as well as on street parking around the area.
  2. The Start/Finish Location: The 5K, Kids’ Races, Kid’s 1.2 Mile Marathon, Kids Move The New Jersey Marathon Run and Family Festival will all be held at the Oceanfront Promenade in Long Branch: between the Ocean Place Resort and Rooney’s Restaurant. Additional information is available on our website.
  3. Getting to the Start: There are no anticipated road closures on April 25. Good access should exist from the west via Rt. 36, from the north via Rt. 36 and from the south via Ocean Ave. / Blvd., and all local roads.
  4. Security Restrictions: Report any suspicious behavior and unattended bags to Race Staff/Police.

Smooth Sailing on April 24 th & 25th at the Health & Fitness Expo

  1. Getting to the Expo: The address is 175 Oceanport Ave., Oceanport, NJ 07757. Rt. 36 west from GSP Exit 105 and Rt. 18 Exit 13B provide the main access to Oceanport Ave. Many other route options are available using local roads.
  2. Expo Parking: All Expo parking will be inside the Grandstand Area of the park, off Oceanport Ave. VIP Parking: via the first right onto Park Rd. from the traffic circle followed by a quick right into the lot. All other parking: part way around the traffic circle to the left. All Expo parking is free.
  3. Race Packet Pick-up: Be sure to bring your bib # with you to the Expo to speed up the process. Look it up beforehand using the link on our website. Terminals will also be available at the Expo for anyone who doesn’t know their bib number.


  1. The Barnabas Health Family Festival and Kids Races

Held each year on the Saturday morning prior to our Marathon, etc. on the Oceanfront Promenade in Long Branch (the site of the finish area for the Sunday races), Barnabas Health brings families a morning of fun activities and kids races. Please check out the various activities on our website and bring the family!

The Kids’ 1.2 Mile Run is the only event which requires a paid registration (either on-line or on-site on Saturday the 25th).


  1. The Kids Move The New Jersey Marathon Program

Over 2500 Elementary School Children from Long Branch, Oceanport, Monmouth Beach and Perth Amboy have begun a multi-week program to accumulate either 12 or 25 equivalent miles of movement (depending on their age) before Saturday, April 25th.  The children who have successfully met that goal will be invited to move (run, walk, etc.) the last 1.1 or 1.2 miles with us in order to complete the half or full marathon distance, during the Kids’ 1.2 Mile Run. This program is enabled by the enthusiastic support of: the School Districts, Novo Nordisk (sponsoring the multi-week in-school portion), the New Jersey Road Runners Youth Foundation (sponsoring the finishers medals), and the New Jersey Marathon and Half Marathon.  We are all proud of this amazing event, and expect to offer it state-wide in future years.


  1. Security – Be Aware of the Rules to Make Race Day Easier

On Sunday, April 26th special security procedures will be in place at the start, finish and throughout the courses. Here are some Highlights:

  • Registered Athletes: May bring one clear plastic bag, the one which was given to them by the race, with no other bag inside it. That Official Race Day Gear Bag must be dropped off at the Gear Drop Trucks inside Monmouth Park.  Hydration belts and hydration bladders are allowed (as long as they do not contain pockets).  Athletes wearing the hydration belts/packs may be asked to take a drink of the liquid.
  • Spectators: NO BAGS OF ANY KIND will be allowed in the security zones inside the Monmouth Park Grandstand gates or inside the secure Finish Line Festival Area. That means no pocketbooks, backpacks, diaper bags, etc.


  1. Getting Information During Race Weekend

If you have questions over race weekend there will be Information available in many locations and ways. There will be an Info booth just inside the Main Expo Entrance (to the right), a tent as you enter Monmouth Park at the Start Area and a tent at the Finish Line Festival area on race day. In addition, there will be staff roaming around each of those venues wearing shirts which say: “Got A Question?” on the front and “Ask Me!” on the back.  If the Ask Me folks can’t answer your question they will direct you to one of our Info booths/tents.


  1. Volunteers – Final Call

We have a few volunteer positions still open for race weeks shifts (April 23-26).  If you’d like to be part of the action and involved in some of the many activities required to put on this weekend event, we would be glad to find a spot for you. Send an email right away to: Volunteers@NJMarathon.org, as we’re almost full.


  1. Making Race Day Special

Choose one or more of the following ways to enhance your race experience:

  • Sign up for a VIP Experience. VIPs will receive: a special meeting with our Race Director and local dignitaries, special expo and race day parking areas, special start and finish line food and relaxation areas, special bibs and bib numbers, etc.
  • NY York and Northern NJ, take the bus to the race – simplify race day transportation on April 26th
  • Rock to the Finish Line Festival Band (a popular Jersey Shore band will be announced any day now)
  • Listen for your bib # to be announced as one of our many Finish Line Raffle winners. You’re automatically entered in the raffle as soon as you cross the finish line (they are chosen by finisher’s bib numbers). Among other items, we will be raffling off six pairs of Skechers Performance shoes. That’s the brand and line of shoes which America’s top marathoner, Meb Keflezighi, wears!
  • Enjoy a free, light massage, to help with your post-race recovery and rejuvenation
  • Enjoy a snack or meal while cheering for family and friends still on the race course
  • Have your new spinning finisher’s medal engraved with your name and finish time
  • Shop for some great deals on Official New Jersey Marathon and Long Branch Half Marathon gear
  • Take a walk on the beach, which is right beside the finish area, and perhaps a dip in the ocean!


  1. Our Expo Speakers and Exercise Classes

When planning you visit to our Health & Fitness Expo and Race Packet Pick-up service please check out our free Presentation Series and Exercise classes listed in Race Director Update #8.

Weather permitting, we will again have musical entertainment in the area in front of the Expo main entrance.


  1. Let’s All Pitch in Together to Help Others

We’re attempting to change the lives of families in African villages again by donating used athletic shoes to the MORE Foundation during the Expo. It takes the proceeds from 600 pairs of shoes to sustain a family for a year, and we’d like to adopt several families again this year! Together we have supported 8 families since 2012. That’s a lot of shoes! We thank you for giving us your old training and racing partners! We encourage you to continue the tradition this year.

Move for Hunger will be conducting a food drive again this year during the Health & Fitness Expo.  Please remember, it’s “cans in hands” when heading to the Expo.  Please help us to end hunger here in New Jersey!! Together you have donated over 6,000 pounds of food.  Thank you for your generosity!


I hope that the information above will help you to understand what to expect during the many parts of race weekend and help you to better plan your time with us at the Shore.


Best wishes during your training and on race day!


Joe Gigas
Race Director
Novo Nordisk New Jersey Marathon and Half Marathon
Presented by: Life Time Fitness

2013 Race Director Update #9 – April 21 (2 weeks until The New Jersey Marathon Weekend)

Race Info Questions: Please look over the information on our website at: www.njmarathon.org to help you during your race day planning. Please like us on Facebook as we often announce new information on our Facebook page first.

Race Packet Pickup Info:  If you have any questions about picking up your race packet please be sure to read the “Packet Pickup Info” on our website in order to make this as easy as possible for yourself or your Proxy.

Pacing Teams:  Stop by the Pacing Team Booth at the Expo to ask questions and to meet Bob our Pacing Team Leader, and perhaps some of his pacers.  It’s free to join-in and pacing teams provide a great way to give you an edge toward meeting your race day goal. Our teams cover a wide range of finish times including ones around the maximum finish time for each race. All of the Boston Qualifying times are also included!  Here’s the link to info about our pace group times and the pacers.

Starting Corral Assignments: We have manually placed some people in the last corral of their race who either didn’t bother to enter an expected finish time or entered a finish time which was a new world record, etc.   Even with those manual changes, there are likely people in corrals who shouldn’t be there, as it’s impossible to check all 11,000+ expected finish times.

If you were assigned a corral which is beyond your current ability, we ask each of you to sort yourself properly into corrals which are more appropriate. You can move yourself backward to a corral behind the one assigned without any prior authorization. It is your responsibility to be in the proper corral for your current demonstrated ability

In general, we do not make changes to the assigned corrals.  However, we may choose to change a corral assignment at the Expo only under the following conditions: your results from a recent race, on a certified course, are available on Athlinks.com and that finish time indicates to us that you can reasonably be expected to finish within the range of finish times in a different corral.  In that case only, will we change the corral assignment on your bib.  Faster training times, as recorded on your watch during training will not be accepted and neither will race times older than three years ago.  Please note: if you do not receive a change of corral sticker on your bib during the Expo you will not be allowed to enter an earlier corral on race day.  Please stop by at the Expo to apply for a change, if you qualify (see the qualifying information above). We want you to start where you belong based on past performance.

What’s Happening at the Health & Fitness Expo?: The 2013 Novo Nordisk Health & Fitness Expo will again feature an impressive lineup of health and fitness presentations as well as exercise, stretching and yoga classes and top vendors with great merchandise, accessories, and memorabilia.  In addition, some of our sponsors, affiliated charities and local businesses will also be available.  Browse through the expo area, join an interactive class, pick up some great advice from our expert speakers, place a bet on the Kentucky Derby, and even watch it on the large screen TVs in the Clubhouse.

Bring your workout clothes and/or your note pads, and plan on taking part in these free activities on each day of the Health & Fitness Expo. We will be announcing the days & times and speaker information later this week.

Interactive Classes:

Various exercise classes – envision (details available soon)

Qigong – Maxine Forster Guenther, MA

Chi Running – Dave Stretanski

Hot and Soul Yoga

Synergy Yoga


Presentation Topics:

Giving It Your All – Dane Rauschenber

Achieving Your Personal Best In Your 50s and 60s – Joe Muldowney

Pre-marathon Stretching – Barbara B. Mintz, MS, RD

Nutrition and Hydration – Barbara B. Mintz, MS, RD

Diabetes Awareness – Autumn Dempsey, RN, CDE

Nutrition For Top Performance – Karen Basedow, MS RD, CDE

How to Avoid a Trip to the ER-Planning is Everything – Victor Almeida, MD and Deb Cioffi, RN, MSA, MSN

After the Race: The Science of Recovery – Pam Wilson, DC and Michele Peters, RDN

What is Kinesio Tape and How Can It Help You? – Jeff Poplarski, DC and Christine Scarano, PT, DPT

How to Improve Your Time and Reduce Injuries – Chris Storti, DC

What is in Your Food and Water that is Making You Sick – Nicole Rivera, DC

How To Get Your Body Functioning Better Than Ever – Nick Carruthers, DC

Course Preview and Strategy – Joe Gigas, Race Director or Marty Frumkin, and Jim Thomas, Course Directors

Athlete Tracking: It is our intention to provide runner tracking again this year. The unexpected and extraordinary costs associated with putting on this year’s race makes it necessary for us to find creative ways to provide this service for you. We will continue to work on this, but time is running short and I can still only report our intention, not that it will be provided.  BTW – The required timings mats around the course have been ordered.

Race Day Shuttle Service: Race day shuttles will run from the start area to the relay transition area, and to the finish area and back to central parking at Monmouth Park, ONLY. Here is a link to the details Free Shuttle Bus SchedulePlease note: There will be NO Shuttle Service prior to our published schedule   If you need to leave earlier please have a vehicle waiting for you in one of the parking lots near the finish line (see “Finish Area Parking” below).

Finish Area Parking: If you need to leave prior to the start of the free Shuttle Bus Service, the lot at Seven President’s Park (Parking Lot A) is available for $15 per car, as well as in other parking lots in the area.  This Park is normally an easy drive from Monmouth Park and a short walk along the Ocean Promenade from the Park will get you to the Finish Line.  Please note:  This lot will only be directly accessible from Monmouth Park until about 7:00 am (after that time road closures will likely block direct access to the Park).  Tickets can be purchased on-line to be mailed to you or picked-up at the Expo. A link to make the on-line purchase will be available on our website soon.

Race Day Weather: We will be watching the long range weather forecasts often over these last two weeks prior to race day in order to make any necessary adjustment in our planning. With two weeks left, all I can tell you is that the weather varies from year to year.  It was in the low 40s and sunny with very little wind at race start time this morning.  It warmed up to almost 50 degrees by mid-afternoon with a light breeze at the finish.  It was perfect race weather today at the Shore!!

Previous RD Updates: To review all previous Race Director Event Updates please go to the following link: View the previous Race Director Updates.

Please Join us in Helping Others: Move for Hunger will be conducting a food drive during the Novo Nordisk Health & Fitness Expo. Please remember, it’s “cans in hands” when heading to the Expo again this year. Please help us to continue to make a positive impact on hunger, right here in The Garden State!!!

We are also attempting to change the lives of poor families forever, and need your help in donating used athletic shoes to The MORE Foundation Group during the Expo. It takes 600 pairs of collected shoes per family/village/school, and we’d like to you to join us to adopting several families/groups this year!  Please join us in this very worth-while effort!

Correction:  I incorrectly reported the cost of the parking at Monmouth Park in my update # 6.  It will cost $5 to park at Monmouth Park, not $1.  Please note: the $5 parking fee will be collected as you leave the parking lot.  Sorry for the error!

Best wishes during your training and on race day,

Joe Gigas, Executive Race Director