Run Thru History set to celebrate its 44th edition

Published 11:05 am Sunday, February 26, 2023

Officially, spring begins on March 20. Unofficially, in Vicksburg at least, it starts on March 4.

The Run Thru History, the 10-kilometer run and 5-kilometer race walk in the Vicksburg National Military Park, returns next weekend for its 44th edition. Held every year on the first Saturday in March, it has become one of Vicksburg’s iconic events and a first sign that winter is changing to spring.

“To a lot of people, the Run Thru History is Vicksburg’s way of ushering in spring,” said Phillip Doiron, the executive director of the Vicksburg YMCA which organizes the race. “It’s a marker. It’s become a neat little niche that marks a change in our community.”

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One of the biggest niches Doiron and his organizational group has tried to feature is living up to the name of the race and embracing its relationship with the VNMP.

The Run Thru History traverses a course through the VNMP and is believed to be the only event of its kind in a national park. It serves as both a showcase for Vicksburg and the VNMP, with things like re-enactors and a cannon blast or musket volley — rather than a gunshot or horn — starting the race.

Although the Run Thru History temporarily relocated across town in 2021 when the VNMP was closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Doiron said the Park is an integral part of the race and its character. It returned to the VNMP in 2022 and will be there again this year.

“If we were a random 10K, we would not be celebrating 44 years. What has allowed us to continue that long is our great relationship with the Vicksburg National Military Park,” Doiron said.

The 44th annual Run Thru History will begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday, March 4, with the 10K run and 5K race walk. The Cannonball Run 1-miler for children will follow after the first two events, at approximately 9 a.m.

The entry fee is $30 for the run and race walk until Feb. 27, and $35 after that date. The 1-miler is only for children 12 and under and is free.

Runners and walkers can register online through, or in person at the Purks YMCA off of East Clay Street.

Packet pick-up will be available at the Hampton Inn across from the VNMP, 3330 Clay St., from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, March 3. Online registration will also be open until 7 p.m. Friday, and race day registration will be available from 6:45 to 7:45 a.m. on March 4.

After the race, the Hampton Inn’s parking lot will host the Run Thru History’s after-party. The Chill will perform, and hot dogs, snacks and beverages will be available.

Doiron said approximately 300 people have already signed up, and with good weather in the long-range forecast he was encouraged that Vicksburg’s biggest springtime party will enjoy another good year.

“We’re ready for a great event,” Doiron said.

• Saturday, March 4, 8 a.m.
• 10K run, 5K race walk and 1-mile children’s fun run in the Vicksburg National Military Park
• Registration fee is $30 by Feb. 27, or $35 after
• To register or information, visit,, or go in person to the Purks YMCA off East Clay Street

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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