Inaugural Marathon Post-Race Runner Comments

Following are unsolicited email comments we received from runners after the race:

“…thought it went great.”

“Thanks for all your and the volunteers’ efforts in putting on a great experience!”

“Mt Nittany was my first marathon. The course was beautiful, the volunteers were outstanding, the water/aid stations plentiful! I appreciate your efforts and those of all the volunteers. I fully anticipate making it an annual race to participate in for as long as it continues.”

“…enjoyed your 1st marathon!  The course was lovely and the efforts of everyone involved were greatly appreciated.”

“Our congratulations on putting together a very fine event. From our viewpoint, everything seemed wholly planned and well executed.”

“Thanks for a well run marathon, a little challenging to say the least, but well done.”

“Thanks for organizing a great race yesterday. It was a lot of fun.”

“Although I dropped out halfway through I really enjoyed your race. It was very well supported and the volunteers were fantastic! My only suggestion would be to start at 6 or 7 am next year. Thanks for starting a great new race!”

“Congratulations on a successful inaugural event! From what I saw, everything went very well (aside from the weather). There were lots of people along the course, it was well marked, and there was plenty of water and Gatorade. State College really came out to support the marathon and your volunteers deserve huge thanks!”

“Thank you very much for you and your teams hard work.  The marathon was a beautiful challenging course.  It was extremely well run and the support was fabulous.  Despite the weather being a few degrees too warm I would highly recommend this to any of my fellow runners.”

“Great tough course, great support, amazing volunteers, under really tough weather conditions!! Thanks for putting this on!”

“I wanted to take the opportunity to say thanks for putting on such a great event. I think it went really well. The course was well marked, there were plenty of aid stations and volunteers to make for a smooth run. Not to mention, the whole race and event just had a good vibe. Everyone just seemed glad to be there and happy to have the chance to run some miles on a challenging, but familiar course.”

“The race was great and wonderfully organized with all the volunteers and made the course easy to follow. Thanks again.”

“Very nicely run race for being the 1st. You and your committee obviously spent a lot of time thinking of what was needed for a smooth race and getting it organized. Plenty of great volunteers that were extremely supportive!! I also really enjoyed the community based aid stations (music, water sprinkler, drinks and fun people to make us smile when smiling was the last thing we runners thought about doing).”

“Thank you very much… for all of your work in directing the marathon!  It was a great event, and wonderful to be able to run a ‘home town’ marathon”

“Enjoyed the race and am so happy to have accomplished my goals (to finish and not walk)!   Your crew was incredibly supportive and that was really great.  Their yellow shirts made them easy to spot too.   Stonebridge neighborhood was awesome…especially the lady with the sprinkler in her yard that she let me run through!  Police assistance was excellent–did not have to wait at a single intersection.  Can’t say enough about such a great and memorable first marathon experience!  Thank you!!!”

“Great, great work making this happen. I hope to see it continue in the years to come.”

“I just wanted to say thank you for a wonderful run on Sunday. I truly hope this becomes a yearly tradition. Great route, great volunteers, excellent water stops and aid stations – and FINALLY, an affordable marathon. Thank you…”

“Thank you for all the work you did…! [Name’s] first marathon, & despite be hot & humid, he plans to train & run again next year & improve his time & endurance…”

“…everyone had a lot of fun at the marathon this past Sunday. We are hoping you guys do the marathon again next year.”

“Spectators and volunteers are soul restorers and Happy Valley has some of the best.”

Mt. Nittany Marathon

The inaugural Mt. Nittany Marathon has run its course. The Conservancy would like to extend a huge THANK YOU to all the runners, volunteers, and sponsors who made the event a success.

The hot, humid day made it a tough course but the supportive volunteers at water stops and all of the turns were great and really helped out the runners. We heard that there were a few impromptu stations as well along the course. In addition to the water, Gatorade and gels provided for the race, volunteers brought their own snacks, watermelon, cookies, and candy for the runners.

Thanks again to the people of our wonderful community.

A total of 138 runners completed the marathon with 43 female and 95 male finishers.

Open Men
1. AJ Kelly, 31, Altoona, PA (2:45:48)
2. Thomas Rudowsky, 20, Lexington Park, MD (2:57:35)
3. Richard Koubek, 24, State College, PA (2:58:46)

Open Women
1. Kathryn Koetje-Simin, 42, State College, PA (3:32:15)
2. Jessica Sarnicola, 33, New York, NY (3:33:55)
3. Becky Wittrig, 45, Port Matilda, PA (3:39:40)

Click here for Full Race Results (PDF) or click here for Marathon Images.



Image: Tom Shakely

Mt. Nittany Marathon 2013

The 2013 Mt. Nittany Marathon is in the books!!!!  Congratulations to all the runners and THANK YOU to the hundreds of wonderful Volunteers and our fantastic Sponsors!!

Race results are posted on the Nittany Valley Running Club website HERE.

Volunteer Jerry Harrington took pictures of most of the runners between mile 16 & 17.  They are posted on Filckr HERE.

Photographer Richie Sherman took photos along the marathon route.  They are posted on SmugMug HERE

Runner Tom Shakely blogged about his experience HERE. 


The Mt. Nittany Marathon is a scenic 26.2 mile certified course winding around the area of its namesake – Mt. Nittany. Utilizing local bike paths and roadways, the inaugural marathon is on a Sunday morning in September when historical average temperatures range from a low of 50 degrees to a high of 77 degrees Fahrenheit. Based on current qualifying dates, the Mt. Nittany Marathon will also serve as a last-chance qualifier for the 2014 Boston Marathon (USATF Certification Code: PA13044WB.  Certified course map available here:

marathon1Start & Finish: Medlar Field at Lubrano Park on the Penn State University main campus near Beaver Stadium,  State College, PA.  Google map HERE.

Date: Sunday, September 1, 2013

Time: 8:00 AM

COURSE MAP: Click MtNittanyMarathonCourse (Other versions: One-Page color with Water Stations Marathon_Course; or click the following for a MapMyRun version:

Cost: $50 before May 31, 2013; $75 from June 1 – Aug. 16, 2013. Deadline is August 16, 2013.

Registration is Closed (Entry Deadline was August 16, 2013 — See you next year!)

Registered Runner List: Click HERE

Need a place to stay?  Click HERE for a list of local hotels and B&B’s that are offering SPECIAL RATES for Marathon weekend!

Pasta Dinner before the race! — Saturday evening, August 31, 2013 is America’s Longest Pasta Table in downtown State College!  Come be part of the record!  Registered Marathon Runners receive a 50% discount — only $5.00 per person.

VOLUNTEERS!!   We need YOU!!  NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY!   Volunteer for the marathon, help preserve Mt. Nittany, AND get a FREE T-shirt!  Click Marathon_Volunteer_Needs to see the different opportunities available, then email John Hook at with your preference and we’ll get you signed up!

Marathon Entry Fees Include:

  • Long-Sleeve Women’s or Men’s Tech Shirt
  • Commemorative Inaugural Mt. Nittany Certificate
  • On-Course Refreshments (Water and Gatorade at every “Station”; Gel at Stations 3/5) and Post-Race Food and Refreshments
  • Disposable ChampionChips with bib identifiers

On Course Refreshments/Aid Stations: Approximately every other mile starting at just beyond the 3 mile mark.  11 stations total: 3.5 miles; 6.1 miles; 8.6 miles; 11 miles; 13.6 miles; 15 miles; 17.1 miles; 19 miles; 21.5 miles; 23.1 miles; 24.9 miles.  Porta-Potty(ies) available at 3.5 miles, 6.1 miles, 21.5 miles & 23.1 miles.

Eligibility: To compete in the Mt. Nittany Marathon you must be at least 18 years of age.

Pacing Requirements: All athletes entering the Marathon must maintain a 16-minute per mile pace or faster throughout the entire race and finish within 7 (seven) hours. Anyone not able to maintain a 16-minute per mile pace may be picked up and transported to the finish. You may be picked up at any point along the course for not maintaining a 16-minute per mile pace. We suggest you train for a 15-minute per mile pace or faster to allow time for breaks (restroom breaks, refreshment stops, etc.).

Packet Pick-Up Location & Times:

  • Saturday, August 31, 2013: 1:00 – 4:00 PM, Centre County/Penn State Visitor Center, 800 Park Ave., State College, PA 16803 (corner of Park Ave. & Porter Road – enter parking lot from Porter Road)
  • Saturday, August 31, 2013: 5:00 – 7:00 PM, Registration tent at America’s Longest Pasta Table, corner of Pugh Street and Calder Alley, downtown State College
  • Sunday, September 1, 2013: Race site (Medlar Field at Lubrano Park) starting at 6:00 a.m.

Race Day Parking: There is plenty of free parking in paved lots around Beaver Stadium, the Bryce Jordan Center and Medlar Field, all within a few hundred yards of the Start/Finish line.

Waiver/Packet Pick-Up: To pick up your race packet prior to race day, you must bring a Photo ID. No exceptions will be made. If someone else is picking up your packet, the individual picking up on your behalf must provide his/her Photo ID and a copy of your Photo ID.

Cancellation Policy: Registration fees for the 2013 Mt. Nittany Marathon are non-refundable.

Safety Reminder: For the safety of yourself and the other participants, baby joggers, strollers, baby carriers, baby backpacks, inline skates, motorized scooters, bicycles, skateboards, canes, crutches, walkers, walking sticks and animals of any kind are prohibited from the course. If you are seen in violation of one of these you will be removed from the course and transported to the finish. Headphones are discouraged due to traffic patterns throughout the course that require complete attention to ensure your safety.

Bib Numbers: Each runner will be issued a bib number at Packet Pick-Up. It is the responsibility of the runner to wear the bib number during the race. If a runner is seen without their bib number while running on the course, they will be removed from the course for security and safety reasons.

Timing & Results: The Mt. Nittany Marathon is a timed event. The disposable ChampionChips timing system will be used with both a start and finish sensor to provide an accurate result for every participant and to eliminate a need to rush the start. A link to results will be posted on this page following the conclusion of the race.

Weather: The race will be held rain or shine. If there is lightning in the area the race will either have a delayed start or, depending on the intensity of the weather, be cancelled. The determination will be made by the Marathon organizers. Runner and Volunteer safety will not be compromised.

Lightning Policy: Marathon operations will shut down when lightning is 5 miles out from the event areas. Operations will not resume until the lightning is 5 miles out moving away from the event areas. Marathon organizers will determine this using the “Flash to Bang Rule” and weather radar. The Organizers will determine a course of action: to operate in the weather, delay the event, or cancel the event. The “Flash to Bang Rule” is applied by measuring the time (in seconds) between a visual lightning “Flash” and hearing the resulting “Bang”. This time is then divided by a factor of “5” to obtain distance in miles. For example, 25 seconds between “Flash” and “Bang” divided by “5” equals 5 miles.

Awards: Top 3 Overall Male and Female winners will receive awards at a presentation at the conclusion of the race on Sunday, September 1, 2013. Please note overall awards are based on Gun Time.

Age Group and any additional awards will be distributed by mail after the event. (Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery.) Age Group and any additional awards will be based on Net Time. A runner will not receive two awards for the same race result.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION or QUESTIONS: Contact John Hook, President of the Mount Nittany Conservancy at

Our Third Annual Mount Nittany Night

On September 28th more than 60 people gathered to celebrate our 3rd annual Mount Nittany Night at the Mount Nittany Vineyard & Winery. Our guests enjoyed specific food pairings from local caterers to go with the winery’s vintages.

Ken Reeves

The Friend of the Mountain award, which honors a person or group based on contributions of talent, time, and resources on behalf of the Mountain, was awarded posthumously to Emeritus Board member Ken Reeves. Ken was an integral part of the founding of the Mount Nittany Conservancy in 1981 and served as our third President. Ken’s love for the Mountain, his vision for its preservation and conservation, and his knowledge about all that surrounds it, has been an inspiration for all of us who have the honor of serving the Mountain.

The Mount Nittany Conservancy thanks these event sponsors:

Third Annual Mount Nittany Night Wine Tasting

The Conservancy will host its 3rd Annual Mt. Nittany Night Wine Tasting event on Friday, September 28, 2012 from 6-8 p.m. at the Mount Nittany Winery. This year we expect to offer specific food pairings from local caterers to go with the winery’s vintages. As always, we will have a short program culminating with the presentation of our Friend of the Mountain award. Tickets are $30 per person. Proceeds benefit conservation of the Lynch Overlook. Thanks to our sponsors Mount Nittany Vineyard, Mt. Niittany Inn, Nittany Lion Inn, and Nittany Bank.


Mt. Nittany Night Grows in Second Year

More than 50 people gathered to celebrate the second annual Mount Nittany Night on Friday, September 30, at the Mount Nittany Vineyard & Winery.

The event raised nearly $3,000 to support new erosion suppression efforts at the Mike Lynch Overlook.

Guests sampled delicious wines and appetizers, and, during its 30th anniversary, the board honored the significant contributions of long-time Mountain steward Tom Smyth with its second Friend of the Mountain award. The award honors a person or group based on contributions of talent, time, and resources on behalf of the Mountain. Earlier, the board had recognized Smyth by renaming the Nittany Mall overlook in his honor. Smyth has led numerous efforts to preserve and conserve many of Mt. Nittany’s attributes, most recently helping the Conservancy fend off the 2008-2009 gypsy moth outbreak.

Donations to Mount Nittany Night increased by more than 50 percent over last year. The funds will go to provide significant erosion prevention measures that are sorely needed to protect the Lynch Overlook-the most-frequented destination on the Mountain. New water bars using wood harvested from the Mountain and a redirected trail will be put in place during the coming year.

MNC thanks these event sponsors:


Mount Nittany Night at Mount Nittany Vineyard & Winery

Our second annual Mount Nittany Night will be held Friday, September 30, from 6 to 8 p.m. Held at the Mount Nittany Vineyard & Winery in Linden Hall, the event will feature delicious wines and appetizers, good company and the presentation of our second Friend of the Mountain Award.

Tickets are $30 apiece, and all proceeds will benefit the Mountain.

For coverage of last year’s Mount Nittany Night, click here. To purchase tickets, email event organizer Erich May at by September 26.

First ‘Mount Nittany Night’ a Rousing Success

Donors, neighbors and board members enjoyed the first annual Mount Nittany Night on Friday, October 1, at the Mount Nittany Vineyard & Winery.

During the fundraising event, guests sampled delicious wines and appetizers, and the board honored the significant contributions of neighbor Wilhelm Kogelmann.

As the Conservancy approaches our 30th anniversary in 2011, a new tradition was started with the establishment of a Friend of the Mountain award.

The award will honor a person or group based on their contributions of talent, time, and resources on behalf of the Mountain.

Wilhelm (Willy) Kogelmann was the Mount Nittany Conservancy’s unanimous first choice to receive the inaugural 2010 Friend of the Mountain Award for Outstanding Contributions to Mt. Nittany. Willy was there as the Mount Nittany Conservancy was first formed. His lands on Mount Nittany were one of the first acquired by the fledgling group in 1985.

MNC President Vince Verbeke presents Willy with his own piece of the Mountain below. The MNC board would like to thank all who attended in support of the Mountain. Please make a note to attend our 2nd annual Mount Nittany Night in the Fall of 2011.

MNC thanks these event sponsors: