As the summer winds down there is the inevitable shift of the season. The air has that crisper quality, the evenings become slightly shorter and darker, the kids have gone back to school. With the realization that summer vacation is a distant memory, there is the excitement of cooler weather and beautiful fall leaves. But before we fully dive into leaf season we are gifted one last long weekend to celebrate the summer of 2015, and Labor Day weekend is chock full of running opportunities across the state for beginning runners looking for a costume run to more experienced competitors seeking out a challenge.
What says Fall better than Apple Festivals? Arts and crafts, delicious food, live entertainment…and a beautiful 8K road race through the mountains. An 8K can be the perfect step up from your 5K training and the Apple Festival 8K in Hendersonville is the perfect kickoff to the long weekend. Or if you were one of the avid Citizen-Times Half Marathon runners you will be happy to know the equivalent ARX Half Marathon has taken its place on September 5th. But if distance isn’t your thing but you enjoy a challenge than try the Marine 5K run. With a race described as “the course too tough to tame,” there is surely a sense of accomplishment to be had at the finish line. And if you are feeling like a rock star than throw on that cape and participate in the evening Superhero 5K in downtown Asheville. There is also an option for the outdoor enthusiasts to join the Chasing Trail 8K on Sunday the 6th. This is a brand new race that is a trail run within city limits. Sound fun to me!
One of the best part of running races is the feeling that you are running for a good cause. On the morning of the 5th run to support children with Congenital Heart Defects in the Heart of a Warrior 5K. Another great way to experience a race is with friends, imbibing in the delicious brews that this area offers. The Growler Gallop 5K is a beer-themed race with the age group winners receiving a growler. Now that’s motivation. You can also really embrace the weekend with the Labor Day Trail Race, choosing between a 5K or 15K along the Catawba River followed by an all day celebration with food, fun, and fireworks.
Labor Day and rivers just go so well together, so enjoy a scenic run along the Hiwassee and Valley rivers in Murphy, NC at the Lovin’ Life 5K. Or end a race in the most refreshing manner with the Go Jump in the Lake 5K and 10K, with a literal dunk in the water to cool off. You can pick up some distance with the Race 13.1 Half Marathon in Fayetteville, NC or enjoy some downhills in the Labor Day 5 Miler in Columbia, SC. Support women with cancer at the Run for Hope 5K in Wilmington, NC, or run for the Eastern Seals in the Seal Run 5K in Morganton, NC.
Whew, that’s a lot of running options. So enjoy the long weekend and the hopefully perfect running weather. Happy Labor Day running!