The City of McAllen leaders recently announced updates for this year’s McAllen Marathon – A Scott Crane Memorial Race, which is set for a 7:00 a.m. start time on Sunday, Jan.15 at the McAllen Convention Center, 700 Convention Center Boulevard.

Registration is underway online for the fourth annual race, a certified qualifier for the Boston Marathon, at www.mcallenmarathon.com and will close on Friday, Jan. 13 at 5:00 p.m. Aside from the full 26.2 mile route, the race features a 13.1 mile half marathon, as well as a five-leg relay marathon.

“We’re inviting everyone from Texas and Mexico to one of the best running courses for a Boston qualifier. It’s flat, fun and fast and our race continues to attract more runners. Come and enjoy our great South Texas hospitality,” said Mayor Jim Darling, City of McAllen.

Cost to register for the race is $105 for the full marathon; $85 for the half-marathon; and $65 for the relay marathon. However, starting tomorrow, a special New Year’s discount of up to 15% will be available for each category, including a special Family 5K the day before, for five days only, from December 23 to December 27. This is a perfect chance to take advantage of this offer as a gift for your favorite runner or to get ahead on 2017 fitness goals.

Simply log on and enter code NY2017 to register and receive the discount. Additionally, from now until the marathon, look for special promotions and giveaways on the McAllen Marathon Facebook page. Win coveted swag items including water bottles, long-sleeve performance tees, half-zip jackets and the new long-sleeve tee that will be sold only the day before the race at the McAllen Marathon Health & Wellness Expo.

The Scott Crane Memorial Race is named in honor of former McAllen City Commissioner, Scott Crane who passed away from a heart attack suffered during the race’s second year. A big proponent of health and fitness, Mayor Darling and the McAllen City Commission wanted to honor Crane’s legacy in a permanent and big way and decided to name the race for him.

This year, the route will begin in Oval Park at the Convention Center, running east, and after running the entire route, will finish at the same location. This race will showcase the area’s amenities for visitors and locals alike. Additionally, for runners flying in, the convenient location of the hotels on site offer an advantage of being at the start and finish line of the race right at their doorstep that no other race can offer.

For non-running residents who wish to be a part of the marathon as more than spectators, school groups, non-profit organizations, businesses and civic groups are being recruited to showcase McAllen’s famous South Texas hospitality to inspire and encourage runners along the way by serving as cheer and water station volunteers. Each volunteer group will have the opportunity to compete and win $500, with their creative costumes, posters and cheers. Call the City of McAllen Parks & Recreation Department at (956) 681-3333 for more information.

Part of the excitement of the marathon is the ongoing Health & Wellness Expo that takes place on that same marathon weekend, Saturday, Jan. 14 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the McAllen Convention Center. Admission is free to the public. Businesses and organizations that wish to be a part of the Expo or a sponsor of the McAllen Marathon can still sign up. Simply contact the Parks & Recreation Department for those details.

Finally, a special feature of the Marathon is the Kids Marathon, an initiative in partnership with the McAllen Monitor, Telemundo 40, the City of McAllen, Texas A&M Healthy South Texas and McAllen ISD, to get McAllen youth to have run or walk 26.2 miles over the past four months. Participants will walk their final mile on Saturday, January 14.