Mario Marathon

Mario Marathon
Mario Marathon
Date(s) 2008-2011
Frequency Annual
Location(s) Lafayette, Indiana
Years active 4
Inaugurated June 27, 2008
Most recent June 24, 2011
Participants Brian Brinegar, Chris Deckard, John Groth
Genre Gaming Marathon
Supports Child's Play Charity.

Mario Marathon is an annual fund raiser for Child's Play Charity. As of July 18, 2011, the event has raised a total of $235,901.08[1] in the four years it has been running. In 2008, the event organizers also orchestrated a smaller Zelda marathon that managed to bring in an additional $2,477.00 for Child's Play Charity.

The Mario Marathon team plays the Super Mario video game series. Levels to be played are each unlocked at specific total donation levels, which the Mario Marathon team plays nonstop until either all the games are completed or until gameplay catches up to the current unlocked level.[2][3]

Mario Marathon completed its fourth event on June 28, 2011, with $112,668.62 raised over 110 hours,[2] including approximately $13,000 before the event started on June 24th.[4]



Mario Marathon began in 2008 when Brian Brinegar, a 29 year old web developer in Lafayette, Indiana, was inspired to start a Super Mario video game marathon after watching a group of college students who attempted to complete all four of the 3-D Zelda games in a 48 hour time period. Over a period of 57 hours starting on June 27, Brian Brinegar, Dan May, and John Groth raised $11,767.00 for Child's Play Charity.[5] Later that year, they teamed up with the Four48 group who inspired the original Mario Marathon. Together they held the Zelda Marathon, raising $2,477.00.[6]

The second year of Mario Marathon began on July 10, 2009. Chris "SlouchGuy" Deckard expanded the player roster to take the place of Dan May, who was out of the country.[7] The event raised $29,082.76[8] and lasted over four days.[9] It was also the first year that Mario Marathon started to finish various Mario games at 100% completion.[7]

The third year of Mario Marathon started on June 25, 2010 and raised $82,382.70 over 109 hours.[10][11] This was the first year to include Skype interactivity with both Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day making Skype calls during the Marathon.[10] Mario Marathon 2010 also achieved $25,310 within the first 24 hours, nearly the total of Mario Marathon 2009.[12]

The most recent Mario Marathon began on June 24, 2011 and raised $112,668.62 (as of July 18, 2011) over a period of 110 hours.[13] Mario Marathon 2011 advances include Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels and upgraded video and audio equipment.[14]

A Mario Marathon for 2012 has been confirmed, but no set date has yet been announced[15].


The main Mario Marathon Team from 2010. From left to right: Chris Deckard, John Groth, Brian Brinegar

There are a number of recurring members of the Mario Marathon team. The players trade off on a game-to-game basis. The supporting cast keeps up with donations and crowd interaction. The list below are participants who have appeared in at least two or more Mario Marathons:[2]


  • Brian "ShirtGuy" Brinegar
  • Dan "ChairGuy" May
  • John "CouchGuy" Groth
  • Chris "SlouchGuy" Deckard
  • Nate "ShortsGuy" Jones
  • Bobby "McLoveSeat" Arnold
  • Shanna "Shannabad" Brinegar


  • Sundeep "OrangeShirtGuy (OSG)" Rao
  • Ben "MacGuy" Cotton
  • Emily "BlanketGirl" Blue
  • Stephanie "SlouchGirl" Deckard
  • Jed "Jed" Johnson

Recurring Themes

To break up the monotony of playing games for upwards of 100 hours, the participants started performing special dances for the viewers. These events were commonly the dance associated with the Super Mario Super Show. In 2011, the team implemented the Wheel of Awesome. For every $1,000 donated, a random event is chosen that the participants must perform. While the Super Mario Super Show dance was included on the wheel, other events such as Blindfold Mode were included.

Zoe, known as Couch Dog, is the unofficial mascot of the Mario Marathon. In Mario Marathon 2, the participants set up a camera that focused on Zoe. This became so popular that they used this camera to drive donations.[citation needed]

In 2010, the Couch Pig was brought upon the stream. This large ceramic piggy bank became a fixture of the later stages of the marathon. Certain donation amounts would allow the Couch Pig to be place on the couch, while other donations would revoke those privileges. In 2011, Love Seat Pig, a smaller replica Couch Pig was raffled off for donations.

Bowser Rules

To keep the stream civil and child-safe, the Mario Marathon team conforms to a list of rules[16]:

1. No swearing or offensive language
2. No stereotyping based on ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, etc.
3. No religious or political conversations
4. If you need to answer your phone, go outside
5. Clean up after yourself and take out the trash!
6. Shower once per 24 hours
7. FAIL 5 times = FAIL hat
8. FAIL 10 times = EPIC FAIL hat
Remember, it's for the children

Marathon List

Marathon Date Length Money Raised
Mario Marathon 2008[17] June 27-29, 2008 47 hours, 42 minutes $11,767.00[5]
Zelda Marathon 2008 July 31- Aug. 2, 2008 58 hours, 30 minutes $2,477.00[18]
Mario Marathon 2009 June 26-29, 2009 96 hours, 30 minutes $29,082.76[8]
Mario Marathon 2010 June 25-29, 2010 109 hours, 8 minutes $82,382.70[11]
Mario Marathon 2011[4] June 24-28, 2011 110 hours $112,668.62[19]


  1. ^ [1] Mario Marathon Statistics
  2. ^ a b c [2] Mario Marathon 2011: FAQ
  3. ^ [3] Mario Marathon 2011: Goals
  4. ^ a b [4] Griffin McElroy, 4th Annual Mario Marathon triple-jumps into action today, Joystiq Jun 24th 2011
  5. ^ a b [5] Mario Marathon 2008
  6. ^ [6] Brian Szabelski, "CameronBanga, Mario Marathon teams join forces for Child's Play Zelda gaming maration", Destructoid, July 31, 2008
  7. ^ a b [7] Owen Good, Mario Marathon Fundraiser Blows Past 2008 Totals, Kotaku,, July 12th 2009
  8. ^ a b [8] Mario Marathon 2009: Donations
  9. ^ [9] Mario Marathon 2009
  10. ^ a b [10] Aaron Leedy, Locals play 'Mario' for 3 days straight, WLFL18 News,, June 28th 2010
  11. ^ a b [11] Mario Marathon 2010: Goals
  12. ^ [12] Kris Pigna, Third Annual Mario Marathon for Child's Play Underway, 1 up,, June 26th 2010
  13. ^ [13] Mario Marathon 2011
  14. ^ [14] Mario Marathon 2011: What's New
  15. ^ [15] Mario Marathon
  16. ^ Bowser Rules list was obtained directly from the Mario Marathon crew
  17. ^ Owen Good, "Mario Marathon Raises More than $10,000", Kotaku, June 29, 2008
  18. ^ [16] Zelda Marathon 2008
  19. ^ [17] Mario Marathon 2011: Donations

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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