Frequently Asked Questions

Top Three Frequently Asked Questions

I’m injured and cannot run Dam to Dam, will there be a refund?

There are no refunds at Dam to Dam, a non-profit race run strictly by volunteers. As this is the last Dam to Dam, leftover monies will be distributed in the coming years to charitable groups that support running in the Des Moines area.  Thank you for your contribution.

Can I give my race number and chip to another runner?

No, do not transfer race numbers. Any runner with the wrong race number will be disqualified.  Changing race numbers can create unintended award and medical problems. Additionally, bandits are not allowed in this race – permits, police fees, organizational costs, etc are reserved only for those who registered.

Is there a time limit to complete the last Dam to Dam?

Yes, you must complete the 20 Kilometer (12.4 mile) course by 11:00am – no exceptions.  Please pass the 10 Kilometer mark by 9:00am, and the 10 mile mark by 10:00am.  Your finisher medal, refreshments and party at the finish will await you.

General Race Information

How do I register?

Registration opens at 6:00am on Wednesday, March 14, 2018. You may register online through Tuesday, May 29, or until the race is filled. No paper or mailed entries are accepted. NO REGISTRATION AT PACKET PICKUP.  Register online at

What are the entry fees?

The race is limited to 8,000 runners.  Entry fee TBA.

39th Dam to Dam runner shirt – Sign up in the first 39 days to guarantee your shirt size and a race bib personalized with your first name. After April 21st, shirt size not guaranteed.

Does Dam to Dam limit the number of runners?

Yes, the race is capped at 8,000 runners.

Are bikes, rollers blades or baby joggers allowed on the course?

Early starts, bikes, baby joggers, dogs, roller blades are NOT permitted. Headphones or electronic listening devices are permitted but discouraged for your safety and the safety of other runners.

What timing system is being use at Dam to Dam?

All runners will be provided a bib chip. Your race number will have a chip affixed to the back. You will be timed according to your chip or net time. Open and age division awards will be determined by gun time.

The bib chip cannot be folded, pinned or bent in anyway for it to record your time correctly – failure to wear the race number correctly will result in disqualification.


Registration Questions

What do I do if I cannot participate once I have registered?

No refunds on entry fees or transferring of race numbers. Runners not wearing the correct race number will be disqualified.

How do I know if I am registered?

Runners will receive an e-mail confirmation upon completion of your on-line registration from The credit card used will also reflect your registration payment.

All entrants will receive an e-mail with final instructions and their assigned race number will be posted at on Thursday, May 31st.

You should definitely receive confirmation from If you do not receive an e-mail or cannot find your name on the entrant list, come to the June 1st packet pickup for corrections.

What is the deadline for registration?

Midnight on Tuesday, May 29th is the last date and time for entering Dam to Dam, or when the limit of 8,000 entries is reached.

Where does my registration fee go?

Your registration fees help pay for the necessary permits, police support, medical support, runners services, supplies and personnel to put on the race. Dam to Dam is a 501c(4) nonprofit organization and is directed entirely by volunteers. Dam to Dam has a long tradition of using registration fees to provide a great race at a reasonable cost.

8,000 entrant limit – Why the limit?

Dam runners are the best! We want to make sure everyone has a good run and a great day. All races have limits due to the start and finish area, course route, etc. Too many runners can lessen the running experience. Dam to Dam is no exception.

The race start area, Saylorville Dam, is a unique starting area and can handle only so many runners. Dam to Dam moves a small Iowa city 12.4 miles north of the finish and starts exactly at 7:00am. Thanks to you, it works!

The finish area at Cowles Commons is the perfect ending for all to relax and enjoy the sun. While Dam to Dam is expanding the area to the maximum, it’s only comfortable for 20,000 runners, spectators and family members.


Packet Pickup

Where and when is packet pickup?

Friday, June 1st at the Veteran’s Memorial Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center from 2:00pm to 8:00pm. There is no packet pickup on race day.

How can I find my race number assignment prior to packet pickup?

All race numbers will be posted at on Thursday, May 31st. If you cannot find your name on the entrant list, come to the June 1st packet pickup for corrections.

Can someone else pickup my packet?

Yes, make sure whomever picks up your packet has your permission to pick up your packet. No packets will be mailed prior to or after the race.


Race Day Information

Where should I park on race day?

Parking is available on the street and in parking garages near the bus transportation.  Check out the downtown parking map for parking ramp options on race day.

What is the start time and location?

The race starts at 7:00am on Saylorville Dam, north of Des Moines. The Dam and roads leading to the Dam are closed to traffic at 5:30am. To avoid congestion and parking difficulties, runners must take a bus to the Dam. Buses leave from downtown (location TBA), to Saylorville Dam from 5:00am to 5:45am. Buses leave from Merle Hay Mall and DMACC Ankeny Campus to Saylorville Dam from 5:00am to 6:00am. Bus transportation is one-way only – buses will not return to the pick-up locations after the race.

Is there gear bag check-in?

Please take note that Dam to Dam can no longer be responsible for personal items you bring to the race. Therefore, we will not provide the bag drop service from the start line to the finish line as has been done in the past. Please do not bring any personal belongings to the race which need to be transported to the finish line. Any belongings left at the starting line or along the race route will be donated to charity.

Are there portable bathrooms near the start?

The race start location has over 140 portable bathrooms west of the start area.

Is there a course time limit?

Yes – runners must complete the course by 11:00am. The race ends at Cowles Commons, 3rd & Locust. It is important that everyone honors the time limits. In order to comply with city and county permits, streets crossing the route must be reopened to vehicle traffic after the time limits.

How can I reunite with family, friends and other runners at the end of the race?

The easiest way to find your family and friends after the race is to have a plan beforehand.

Post-Race Information

How will I receive my finishers medal?

You must finish by 11:00am. Your medal will be presented to you after crossing the finish line.

If I won an age division award, how do I get it?

Age division winners can get awards at the information area. Awards will be available starting at 9:00am.

How will I find my official time?

Results will posted on the west side of the Cowles Commons area. Full results will be available by 5:00pm, Saturday, June 2nd, at

What will be the date of Dam to Dam in 2019?

2018 will be the final Dam to Dam race.