Frequently Asked Questions

When is the 2021 Hero Half Marathon?

The 2021 Hero Half Marathon is Saturday, October 30 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Who organizes the Hero Half Marathon?

The Spark Foundation organizes and produces the annual Hero Half Marathon in partnership with the Fayetteville Firefighters Association. Spark is a nonprofit organization that strives to create a positive impact in the community by providing increased access to health and fitness education and opportunities. In addition to our annual race series, The Spark Foundation supports running clubs in local schools through coaching, curriculum and healthy snacks. The Spark Foundation supports pioneering projects around health and fitness through its keystone fund with Fayetteville Public Education Foundation as well as mini-grants for area schools and clubs. When you run, remember that you are helping NWA to build the habits for an active, healthy lifestyle.

Are you taking COVID-19 precautions this year?

Yes. We will be following all city and state Covid-19 regulations. You can find all of those on here:

I am a very slow runner/walker. Will I feel out of place?

You won’t feel out of place at all! Our races are planned for participants of all ages, paces and abilities.

Will I be able to receive a refund or transfer my race registration if I’m unable to participate in the Hero Half Marathon?

We follow the standard running industry policy for registration cancellations. All entry fees are non-refundable and non-transferable.

Will there be pace groups at this race?

Yes! We will have pacers for the following finish times: 1:45, 2:00, 2:15, 2:30, 2:45, 3:00, 3:15, 3:30, and 4:00.

Will the course have a “sweeper”?

Yes! The time limit is 4 hours.

Can I wear headphones?

Yes, but we ask that you keep the volume down at a safe level so that you can hear other runners or instructions from event personnel as well as from other trail users.

Can I bring my dog or run with a stroller?

Yes, well-behaved, trained dogs are welcome to join. Just be sure to keep your furry friends on a non-retractable leash of 5 feet or less and that you bring appropriate supplies to clean up after them.

Are there bathrooms on the course?

There will be portable toilets in the start and finish line zones and a bathroom option nearly every 2 miles. Please see the detailed map in you email.

Will there be age group awards?

Yes, the half marathon will have results and awards for all top age group finishers.

The relay will only have awards for the top male, female, and co-ed teams.

Is the shirt included in my registration?

Yes. Be sure to register by Sept. 8th to guarantee your shirt size.

When and where should I pick up my race packet?

Packet pickup will be hosted Monday-Saturday the week leading up to the race and arrangements for day of packet pickup can be made. Stay tuned for packet pickup location and times. If you live outside of Northwest Arkansas, we will work with you to get your packet mailed to you.

Can someone else pick up my packet for me?

Yes, in order for someone else can pick up your packet for you, they must show proof of your race registration.

Does the race have a gear-check?

There will be an area for runners to leave their gear at the start/finish line.

Where should I park the day of the race?

In the parking lot of the Northwest Arkansas Mall. The race start/finish line will be near the west entrance off Steele Blvd near JC Penney.

How can I volunteer to help out during the race?

Thank you for volunteering to support our runners and The Spark Foundation! For more information, please email

How can I stay up to date with race information?

Follow us on social media: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

If I registered to run this year and then find out I can’t run this year, can I transfer my registration to next year?

No, race registrations may not be transferred to future Spark Foundation races.

Is the course USATF certified?

No, the course is not USATF certified but is officially measured using USATF techniques.

What kind of course support do you offer?

There will be water stations about every other mile on the course.

What happens if it’s raining on the day of the race?

The Hero Half Marathon will be held rain or shine. In the event of extreme weather (i.e. lightning), we will make the safest decision regarding delay or cancellation. Please note that the race registration fee is nonrefundable even if the race is modified or canceled. For any further questions, please email

Can I sign up on the day of the race?

There is no race day registration.

Who should I contact if the answer to my questions isn’t listed here?

Please email us at