Friday, March 30, 2012
Let's race: Events across Western Virginia
The Roanoke Times | File November
Participants wait in anticipation at the start line of the Drumstick Dash.
- Virginia deer hunting numbers tail off
- Electric ski suit fails to create big buzz on the slopes
- Beech: A unique mountain resort (with photo gallery)
- Visit our Outdoors page
The Wild Life blog
Running and racing are enjoying a boom the likes of which hasn't been seen since the running craze of the 1970s.
Need proof? Just look at the calendar of race events on tap for the coming months in Western Virginia.
Events range from blazing fast 1-mile road races to one of the toughest road marathons in the country, with lots of those popular 5-kilometer races/fun runs/walks in between.
While this calendar doesn't include every race - for example, dates for some long-running annual events have not yet been finalized - it provides a solid foundation for planning for casual runners and competitive racers alike.
31 - Virginia Military Institute 10K and half-marathon, Lexington. 10 a.m. www.vmi.edu/content.aspx?id=17369.
7 - Point of Honor 5K, Amazement Square, Lynchburg. 9 a.m. www.riversiderunners.com.
7 - Roanoke River 5K, Rivers Edge Sports Complex. 9 a.m. Contact Jeremy Woods at 540-589-3212 or JAWoods@rcs.k12.va.us. Taylor's take: About as flat as they come in these parts, this all-on-the-Greenway race is a good early season fitness test.
14 - Blossom to Bottle 5K, Peaks of Otter Winery and Johnson's Orchard, Bedford. 9 a.m. www.blossomtobottle.com.
14 - Mill Mountain Mayhem 10K trail race, Mill Mountain Park, Roanoke. 9 a.m. www.mountainjunkies.net.
14 - Run in Remembrance 3.2-miler, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg. 8 a.m. Free. www.recsports.vt.edu/fitness/events/32-run/register or Ali Cross at firstname.lastname@example.org.
14 - Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5K run and walk, downtown Roanoke. 9 a.m. www.komenroanoke.org. Taylor's take: A new venue (downtown Roanoke) and additional focus on organization should bode well for this popular fundraiser.
21 - Chug for the Jug 5K, Rocky Mount. 9 a.m. www.racerockymount.com.
21 - National College Blue Ridge Marathon and Half-Marathon, Roanoke. 7:30 a.m. www.blueridgemarathon.com. Taylor's take: With more than 7,000 feet of elevation change, this marathon is a serious test of will and strength. The half-marathon is no slouch. There are still race spots available, or just come out and cheer on the 1,000 participants.
28 - The Bike Kitchen 5K Run/Walk, Christiansburg. 8:30 a.m. www.active.com/running/christiansburg-va/the-bike-kitchen-5k-run-walk-2012.
28 - Mountain Pleasant River Run 5K, Roanoke River Greenway. 9 a.m. www.mpbaptist.com/riverrun.html
28 - Run for Good Food, Pulaski. Half-marathon and free kids fun run. 9 a.m. www.pulaskifresh.com
28 - Stick-Man Mud Run, Christiansburg. 5K with obstacles. www.stick-manmudrun.com.
5 - Pilgrim Baptist Church 5K, Roanoke. 8:30 a.m. pilgrimbaptistchurch5k.webs.com.
5 - Trail to Foster Hope 5K, Virginia Creeper Trail, Abingdon. 9 a.m. 276-623-0881.
5 - Trail Nut 10K and Half-Marathon, Falling Creek Park, Bedford. 9 a.m. www.mountainjunkies.net.
6 - March of Dimes Champions for Babies 5K, Salem Civic Center. 2 p.m. Martina Cannon, 989-8030, email@example.com.
12 - Gallop for the Greenways 5K, Roanoke River Greenway. 5 p.m. www.gallop4thegreenways.com.Taylor's take: An evening atmosphere makes this a fun event for everyone from casual joggers to serious racers.)
12 - MANNAthon, Fallon Park, Roanoke. 8K and 5K runs; 3K Family Walk. 9 a.m. www.mannathon.com.
19 - CAFE 5K, Kennedy Park, Roanoke. 9:30 a.m. www.cafe5k.org.
19 - Grandin Court 5K, Grandin Court Baptist Church, Roanoke. 9 a.m. www.grandincourtbaptist.org.
26 - Appalachian Power Festival Run 5K and 10K, Roanoke. 8 a.m. www.roanokefestival.org/html/festival_run.html Taylor's take: A Roanoke staple for years, this event offers one of the region's relatively few 10Ks. Mostly on the Roanoke River Greenway, the course is pretty fast, but not as fast as times last year indicated. What happened? The turnaround spot was early and the course ended up a bit short of 6.2 miles.
2 - Race for Open Space 5K Classic and 3K Run/Walk, Green Hill Park, Roanoke County. 8:30 a.m. www.westernvirginialandtrust.org.
3 - Conquer the Cove 25K and Marathon, Carvins Cove Natural Reserve. 6:30 a.m. www.mountainjunkies.net.Taylor's take: Already home to the brutally tough Blue Ridge Marathon road race, why not host a brutal trail marathon with tons of climbing? Not quite ready for the full marathon? Try the tough 25K, knowing that if you can finish it, a road marathon should be no problem.
9 - Dash Hound Classic 5K, Lakewatch Plantation, Moneta. 7:30 p.m. www.plannedpethoodrockymount.com/dash_hound_classic.html.
9 - Run with Grace 5K and 1-mile fun run/walk, Patrick Henry High School, Roanoke. 8 a.m. www.runwithgrace.com. Taylor's take: Race the Patrick Henry cross country course - against Patriot runners - in this low-key fundraiser that supports a scholarship fund honoring the late Grace Lovegrove, a former Patrick Henry runner who died after collapsing on a college team training run.
16 - Light Up the Night 5K, Roanoke. 8:30 p.m. www.facebook.com/events/270728929674084.
16 - Presbyterian Homes and Family Services and Family Alliance 5K and youth run, Lynchburg. 8 a.m. www.lynchburgroadrunners.org.
23 - Anchors Aweigh 5K and 1-mile fun run, Rivers Edge on the Roanoke River Greenway. 9 a.m. www.anchorsaweigh5k.com.
4 - Second annual Four on the 4th 4-miler, Roanoke. 8 a.m. www.fouronthe4th.com.
21 - Annual Percival's Island 5-miler, Blackwater Creek Natural Area, Lynchburg. www.lynchburgroadrunners.org or 434.846.7449.
28 - Apple Ridge Farm's Charity High Heel Run, The Quarter restaurant, Roanoke. Women's race is 175 yards. Men's race is 75 yards. Noon. www.appleridge.org.
3 - 31st annual Draper Mile, Blacksburg. www.civic.bev.net/striders Taylor's take: An evening race on a blazingly fast downhill course is a surefire recipe for PRs.
11 - Lynchburg Half Marathon and 5K, Blackwater Creek Natural Area, Lynchburg. 7:30 a.m. (half marathon) and 8 a.m. (5K). www.lynchburgroadrunners.org.
18 - Fab 5K cross country race, Green Hill Park, Roanoke County. 8 a.m. www.mountainjunkies.net.
8 - Knights Crossing 5K open cross country race, Green Hill Park, Roanoke County. 8 a.m. Tommy Maguire at firstname.lastname@example.org.
15 - 17th annual Roanoke Mud Run 5K, Green Hill Park, Roanoke County. 9:15 a.m. www.mudrun.com.
29 - 39th annual Virginia 10-miler, E.C. Glass High School, Lynchburg. Also includes 4-mile run/walk. 8 a.m. www.virginia10miler.com. Taylor's take: While not carrying the prestige it did when men like Bill Rodgers were racing and winning, this is still one of Virginia's classic, historic road races.)
20 - Into the Darkness Night Trail Race, 4 miles, Virginia's Explore Park, Roanoke. 7 p.m. www.mountainjunkies.net/Into_the_Darkness.htm.
27 - Bedford Hospice Care Halloween 5K, Bedford. 8 a.m. www.bmhva.com
3 - Big Lick Vet Tails and Trails K9 5K and 1 Mile Walk, North Cross School, Roanoke. 10 a.m. www.biglickvet.com/RACE/TailsandTrailsK95KRun.html
17 - Star City Half Marathon, Roanoke. 8 a.m. www.starcitystriders.com.
22 - Stellar One Drumstick Dash 5K run/walk, Roanoke. www.rescuemission.net/category/drumstick_dash. Taylor's take: Join 15,000 or so other folks in burning off a few calories before your Thanksgiving feast.)
4 - Wednesday Night Disco Series mountain bike race, Mill Mountain Discovery Center, Roanoke. Classes for beginners to experts. 5:15 p.m. www.wednesdaynightdisco.com. Taylor’s take: If you have ever thought about trying a mountain bike race, this is the place to start. Super low-key, cheap and great people.
18 - Wednesday Night Disco Series mountain bike race, Mill Mountain Discovery Center, Roanoke. Classes for beginners to experts. 5:15 p.m. www.wednesdaynightdisco.com
21 - Twilight Criterium, Roanoke. Classes for all levels of racers, from novices to professionals. www.roanoketwilight.com. Taylor's take: If you don’t race, come watch some of the region’s best road racers battle it out on this challenging downtown circuit race.
28 - Mountain Do Triathlon/Duathlon, Hungry Mother State Park, Marion. 10 a.m. Triathlon is a 10K run, 20K mountain bike, and 3K paddle. No paddle leg in duathlon. www.mountaindo-triathlon.com.
2 - Wednesday Night Disco Series mountain bike race, Mill Mountain Discovery Center, Roanoke. Classes for beginners to experts. 5:15 p.m. www.wednesdaynightdisco.com.
5 - Appalachain Power Smith Mountain Lake Sprint Triathlon, Smith Mountain Lake State Park. 750-meter run, 20K bike and 5K run. www.setupevents.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=events&series=vts.
6 - Middle Mountain Momma mountain bike race, Douthat State Park, Clifton Forge. Classes from beginner (11 miles) to double XC (40 miles). 8:30 a.m. www.mountainbikeva.com. Taylor’s take: Douthat’s trails are an amazing venue for this long-running event.
16 - Wednesday Night Disco Series mountain bike race, Mill Mountain Discovery Center, Roanoke. Classes for beginners to experts. 5:15 p.m. www.wednesdaynightdisco.com
19 - Alleghany Highlands Triathlon, Clifton Forge. 5K run, 2-mile paddle and 12-mile bike. www.cliftonforgemainstreet.org.
3 - Salem YMCA Sprint Triathlon. 300-yard pool swim, 15K bike and 5K run. 8 a.m. www.setupevents.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=events&series=vts. Taylor's take: A great first-timer’s triathlon, made even more beginner-friendly when organizers got rid of most of the hills in what was a pretty tough run course.
23 - Bath County Triathlon, Lake Moomaw. 750-yard open water swim, 20K bike and 5K run. 8 a.m. www.setupevents.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=event_detail&eventID=1967.
5 - Triadventure Summer Sprint Triathlon, Christiansburg Aquatic Center. 400-meter swim, 12-mile bike and 5K run. http://www.setupevents.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=event_detail&eventID=1968.
September15 - New River Trail Challenge Triathlon, New River Trail State Park, Fosters Falls. 8 a.m. 40-mile mountain bike, 12-mile kayak and 13.1-mile run. www.dcr.virginia.gov/state _parks/nrtc.shtml. Taylor’s take: After a break of a few years, this fun race returned last year. A great event for relay teams.