• By: OLM Staff

Ottawa Sport Hall of Fame celebrates the Ottawa Marathon with new exhibit

Photo courtesy of the Ottawa Sport Hall of Fame

On May 25, 1975, a shot rang out on the campus of Carleton University. 146 runners took to the streets in a mad scramble and with that, the Ottawa Marathon was born. The rest, as they say, is history… and now, that history is chronicled in impressive detail at a new local exhibit.

In collaboration with the Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend and Ottawa Archives, the Ottawa Sport Hall of Fame has launched a new exhibit, "Ottawa Marathon: 45 Years Running". Through an assortment of fascinating displays, the exhibit traces the evolution of the race from its early days as a small, grassroots event into a world class showcase of running, walking and rolling, attracting athletes from across Canada and around the world. The exhibit contains a spectacular array of artifacts, photos, videos, and relics collected since 1975. It will run (no pun intended) until October of 2019. 

“The community impact of the Ottawa Marathon across 45 years is extremely impressive," said Ottawa Sport Hall of Fame Chairman Dave Best. “So we are thrilled to be able to showcase the history and heritage of this world-class event. This is the first of what we hope will be many targeted exhibits aimed at bringing more visitors to the Hall."

Over the last four and half decades more than 150,000 people have participated in the race, which has also raised millions of dollars for local charities and injected millions more into the local economy.

“We’re very proud of the evolution of the Ottawa Marathon," says Race Director John Halvorsen, “so we’re grateful for the opportunity, in our 45th year, to showcase some of our many, many special moments in the Hall of Fame."

Halvorsen is one of five local sports icons who will be inducted into the Ottawa Sport Hall of Fame in 2019. He will be honoured at the official ceremony on May 31, along with former Ottawa Senator Chris Phillips, wheelchair basketball star Chantal Benoit, prolific community coach Richard Desclouds, and the 1968 and 1969 Ottawa Rough Riders.