Today, the Office of Mayor Ted Wheeler and the Portland Bureau of Transportation announced that Portland-based Run With Paula Events has won the solicitation for the 2018 Portland Marathon

Run With Paula is an event firm owned by Paula and Dave Harkin. The award-winning event operator has created and run a variety of successful distance-running events in the Portland area, including the Hippie Chick and Helvetia half marathons in Washington County. The couple also own Portland Running Co., where participants in Run with Paula’s Beaverton Half Marathon, to be held on Sunday, will be picking up packets today until 3 p.m.

“I believe our great city deserves an equally great race,” Paula Harkin said. “Fall just would not be the same without a marathon in Portland.”

In recent weeks, several event producers contacted the City of Portland, expressing an interest in hosting a marathon in 2018. In order to choose a qualified producer within the short time frame remaining, the City created a streamlined process to select an organizer for a 2018 event.

Interested applicants were asked to respond to seven questions that assess whether they have the experience, organizational capacity and financial resources necessary to successfully organize a marathon in 2018. Responses were due on May 25.

The City intended to hold a blind draw today from a pool of qualified applicants to determine which company would produce the marathon. Run With Paula Events was the only organizer to meet all the criteria for the 2018 event.

The event will not be city-owned or sponsored. The event date will be October 7, 2018. It will be the subject to all permitting requirements and costs as provided by City rules.

The City continues to lead a separate process for selecting an event organizer for a marathon in 2019.

Information about the application process for the 2018 marathon and the process for the 2019 marathon can be found on PBOT’s web site. PBOT issues permits for special events, which are moving events held in the street and/or sidewalk, such as runs, walks, marches, parades or bicycle races. The bureau coordinates event plans with partner agencies to protect public safety and access to City streets and right-of-way.


The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the City’s transportation system, and a community partner in shaping a livable city. We plan, build, manage and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides access and mobility. Learn more at