Chelsea McKell, from Utah Running Guide, highlights a few races to put on your calendar.
WHY make a holiday running event part of your traditions this time of year?
- Creates lasting MEMORIES and fun PHOTOS to share
- Gives you something to stay MOTIVATED through the colder, more LAZY (and calorie-laden) months
- Helps you to give back to great causes and charities in a fun, creative, ACTIVE way, since ALL holiday races are fundraisers for good causes.
- Non-competitive; NO need to train! Just jump in and run/jog/walk it!
- FESTIVE! The crowds, the decorations, the activities, the prizes, the shirts - they're all 100% holiday inspired and will put even the Grinch in the right spirit.
Upcoming holiday races in Utah:
Between Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's, there are literally dozens of organized running events taking place.
-The Turkey Leg 5K at Heritage Park in Farmington. It's a 5K that began as a family activity and turned into a large annual community event. Last year they collected 300 cans of food for the food bank from participants! Jeff & Holly Fowler and their children have participated in it every single year. Holly doesn't consider herself a serious runner - she jogs a few times a week, and doesn't do any other races during the year. Just the Turkey Leg 5K on Thanksgiving morning with her family! That's what's great about holiday races - they're not necessarily competitive. They're fun, service- and family-oriented events.
-The Thanksgiving Day Races at the South Davis Recreation Center. There's a 10K, 5K, and 1K - a distance for every member of the family and all abilities. Many families love doing this race every year because there are SO many pies and turkeys being raffled off and awarded, they all usually walk away with one! And if not, they certainly had fun chasing down Tom the giant Turkey mascot!
- Christmas wouldn't be Christmas for many Utah runners without The Santa Run Series. It's Nov 23, 24, and Dec 1 in West Valley, Ogden, and Provo. Thousands of people will do a 5K down city parade routes wearing a full Santa costume. Aid stations are exactly what Santa wants: milk & cookies & candy canes!
- The Jingle Bell Run is a national event happening in locations all across the country during the holiday season. It's raised over $3 million for the Arthritis Foundation. We've got two Jingle Bell runs in Utah - Dec 1st at Trolley Square, and Dec 8th in St. George! Some runners take their kids or grandkids here to see Santa, instead of malls or stores, because it teaches children a lesson that the holidays don't have to be just about indulging in sweets - we can have fun doing active things too!
-The New Year Resolution Run is the first Saturday morning of the New Year. It's in Kaysville at Boondocks, and features a 10K, 5K, and 1K. This will be the inaugural year for the event, and we predict it's going to be a HUGE success and become a tradition for many Utahans. It's all about kicking off your New Year right and running or walking in honor of your resolutions.