The most unique physical fitness challenge (or friendly fitness
walk) in the USA!
Bisbee 1000 The Great Stair Climb Fundraiser is the only outdoor stair climb in the U.S.
and arguably one of the most unique and challenging events in the world. Known
nationally as “the 5K that feels like a 10K (--despite the fact that it is really 4.5 miles),
the course features nine staircases connected by winding roads that take participants through some of the most scenic parts of Old Bisbee.
History of the Bisbee 1000
Unique to Bisbee is a system of old and deteriorating stairways that course through its picturesque hills, affording views of the town's quaint houses and colorful gardens. The stairways originally followed the mule paths worn into the terrain during the heyday of Bisbee's copper mining past. To put men back to work during the Great Depression, the Work Projects Administration (WPA) had overseen building of the stairs over those same pathways.
In 1990, Cynthia Conroy, the founder of the Bisbee 1000,
came up with the idea for a stair climb race after reading an article in the New York
Times about the new stair climbing machine that was launching a ﬁtness craze. She
reasoned that a stair climbing event held on REAL stairs, rather than on a repetitious
machine, would surely draw countless ﬁtness minded people to Bisbee and could
potentially be a “gold mine” for this old mining camp town. But more important, the event was initiated as a fundraiser to raise money for the many underfunded health programs in the schools, and the vast number of small non-proﬁts whose services fostered a
The ﬁrst Bisbee 1000 was held in October 1991 and by virtue of word of mouth alone, it drew 200 people. Each year the event grew at a rate that took everyone by surprise. Now the race is limited to 2,000. In 2012, the Bisbee was ofﬁcially designated as an Arizona Centennial Event, joining the other featured listings in the Arizona Highways Centennial Edition. In that same year, the Bisbee 1000 received the prestigious Governor’s Tourism Award for Special Events in a Rural Area.
As challenging as the course is, the event itself is enjoyed by the most diverse group of
“racers” that ever crossed a start & ﬁnish line: From ages 5 to 87 (our oldest competitor
to date), some are serious competitors out for a win, some are going for a PR, some do
it just to ﬁnish, some are there to do a brisk jaunt, and still others simply want to stroll, enjoy the spectacular views and the equally spectacular people watching. Many dress in costumes, some ﬁreﬁghters compete in full ﬁreﬁghting regalia (despite temperatures
that often hit 80+ degrees F). Although The Bisbee 1000 is its own cause celebre, it has also been the setting for family reunions, school reunions, company team competitions birthdays, and, on at least one occasion that we know of, a wedding proposal.
If the Europeanesque charm of Bisbee is not enough to draw you to the event, then add the dedicated efforts of the City staff, police, ﬁre departments, musicians, and citizens cheering you on your way up and down and all around our mile high city. The Bisbee 1000 is not just any race; think of it as a garden tour, a home tour, a musical extravaganza, a costume ball, one heck of a party, and a celebration of the community spirit. We hope you will join us.
Arizona Governor's Award
Cynthia Conroy - President & Founder
Doreen Edwards - Vice President
Stephanie Peavey - Secretary
Bisbee Vogue, Inc.
PO Box 1099
Bisbee, AZ 85603