Annual Louis Tewanima foot race returns for for its 50th year Sept. 3 on Hopi reservation

Louis Tewanima after winning New York City’s 12-mile modified marathon, May 6, 1911. (Photo/Library of Congress)

Louis Tewanima after winning New York City’s 12-mile modified marathon, May 6, 1911. (Photo/Library of Congress)

SECOND MESA, Arizona — The Louis Tewanima Footrace returns to the Hopi reservation Sept. 3 for its 50th year.

The event, held annually at the Shungopavi Village Baseball Field in the heart of Hopi country, is a landmark event with participants from all backgrounds partaking in the prestigious race that honors the legacy of Louis Tewanima, a revered Hopi Olympian, and pays tribute to the vibrant culture of the Hopi people.

The 50th Annual Louis Tewanima Footrace offers an exciting and technical race experience, featuring two categories: a challenging 10k and a fast-paced 5k.

Runners will have the opportunity to test their endurance and showcase their skills amid the captivating landscapes of Second Mesa, Ariz. This race event serves as an occasion to unite individuals in celebrating the powerful connection between athleticism and cultural heritage.

Louis Tewanima’s remarkable journey began in 1906 when he valiantly defended his Hopi heritage, resulting in his arrest and subsequent enrollment in the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania for reeducation.

Under the guidance of coach Glenn S. “Pop” Warner, Tewanima emerged as a long-distance running champion, earning acclaim at the highest level. He proudly represented the Hopi Nation and the United States at the 1908 Olympics in London, England and the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, Sweden where he competed alongside his esteemed Carlisle teammate and fellow Native American, Jim Thorpe.

At the Stockholm Olympics, Tewanima won the silver medal in the 10,000m run, setting a US Olympic record that endured for 50 years until it was broken by Billy Mills, another Native American athlete. Following his medal-winning performance, Tewanima returned to his Hopi roots, living out his life as a respected elder among the Hopi people.

Participants are encouraged to register early to secure their place in this historic race. Entry fees for the 10K category are $55, while the 5K category is priced at $45. Please note that the race is limited to 300 participants, so don’t miss your chance to be part of this memorable event.

To register for the 50th Annual Louis Tewanima Footrace, please visit the sign-up page at:

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