DULUTH (AP) -- Minnesota's premier sled dog race will take place on the north shore beginning next week, but this year spectators will not be part of the event.

The John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon traditionally attracts thousands of spectators at the start of the race in Duluth, check points and the finish in Grand Portage.

But, because of the coronavirus pandemic, spectators have been told to stay home and watch the race online. Race officials, mushers, handlers and the hundreds of volunteers will be required to wear a face covering.

It's a big field this year with more than 70 mushers registered between three races.

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