The holidays are upon us, which means the holiday races in Northeast Florida are open for registration. Run one, or run them all, but don’t miss out on the fun events the area has to offer!
Community First Thanksgiving Distance Classic (November 25, Pickwick Plaza)
Whether you take on the 5K or the half marathon, you’ll be in great shape for the Thanksgiving festivities later in the day. The Thanksgiving Distance Classic is a Northeast Florida staple, and it’s worth getting up for the 7:00AM start time. Somehow, Thanksgiving doesn’t feel right without a pre-dinner race. Will I see you there?
Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals’ Festival of Lights 5K (December 4, San Marco Square)
While I don’t typically tend to love evening races, the Festival of Lights is different, simply because of all the holiday lights. Runners support the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, while enjoying 3.1 miles through the luminary-lit streets of the historic San Marco area. Beautiful and for a good cause? It’s the perfect holiday combination!
Sandy Claus Full and Half Marathon (December 5, Nocatee)
The Sandy Claus is a smaller event, with a full marathon, a half marathon, a 10K and a one mile fun run. Set in Nocatee, it’s beautifully appointed, with a fantastic course and plenty of post-race amenities (I do recall chili, macaroni and cheese, and ice cream). If you’re looking for a longer distance, you won’t be disappointed in the Sandy Claus events.
Gingerbread Man 5K Dash (December 11, SilverLeaf)
I’m not sure how it happened, but then Gingerbread Man 5K Dash is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. In addition, it will move from its original location in WGV to the new Silverleaf Community. Friends, I am all about running new courses, and earning ginberbread swag, so yes, I see this 5K in my future. Runners get t-shirts, medals and a gingerbread cookie for their efforts, so don’t miss it.
Santa Suits on the Loose 5K (December 11, St. Augustine Beach Pier)
With an in-person and virtual option, Santa Suits on the Loose promises to be a great time. The first 100 runners get an actual Santa suit in which to run, and all proceeds go to benefit St. Augustine Youth Services. This is another race celebrating 10 years, which is just so phenomenal! Are you in?
Starlight 5K Bridge Run/Walk (December 18, Veteran’s Park)
Runners will have to travel south to Flagler Beach for the Starlight 5K Bridge Run/Walk, but it’s so worth it. Again, we are looking at an evening event, but it’s a beautiful one, involving the intercoastal bridge, an over water nature trail, and the fully decorated Veteran’s Park. Head over to the beach afterwards to see the ocean by moonlight, for a truly spectacular evening.
Ultimate Racing New Year’s Rockin’ 5K (January 2, Beachwalk)
Who doesn’t love a race to ring in the new year? J and I tried this event last year, and I really enjoyed it. Beachwalk is a fabulous, flat venue, and I loved the finish line mimosas, bright medals, and fabulous “beach” front venue for photos. Plus, it’s always great to start January with a fun 5k! I’m in!
What holiday races are you planning this year? Ever run in a Santa Suit?
Join the Runner’s Roundup!
Grab our graphic and share the love!