Following a relative lull during the the Labour Day long weekend, this second weekend of September sees an abundance of events from coast to coast.
Friday September 11th: Maritime Race Weekend Marathon, Half, 10K & 5K, Eastern Passage & Cow Bay, N.S.
Certified, Boston Qualifier, Race Expo, Popular, Destination Race
Profile: The Maritime Race Weekend continues to grow in popularity and has once again sold out in 2015. The event kicks off on Friday evening with the Sunset 5K and continues Saturday with races for everyone including a marathon, half, 10K and 5K. In addition to coastline views, participants can expect a sea of cheering supporters and volunteers–some sporting pirate-themed costumes–along the route. The courses tour the flat and scenic coastline of Eastern Passage while showcasing the area’s interior beauty that includes rolling hills through Cow Bay. Marathoners follow the same course as the half and then cover the flat and groomed paths of the Salt Marsh trails. Those wanting to bring home the bling should consider the Tartan Twosome challenge, running two races in two days and earning three unique medals. The event has been rated as one of the best in Atlantic Canada and for good reason.
By the Numbers: Participants: 3,000; Fee(s): $85 (Marathon); $75 (Half); $65 (10K); $55 (5K); $105-135 (Tartan Twosome)
Charity: Fisherman’s Cove, Junior League of Halifax, Team in Training
Ratings: Scenery: 4; Organization: 5; Crowds/support: 5; Amenities: 5; Swag/medals: 5
Saturday September 12th: Oasis Zoo Run 10K & 5K, Toronto, Ont.
Profile: The Zoo Run is a popular, family-friendly event and part of the Canada Running Series. The 10K and 5K courses provide a complete tour of the Toronto Zoo including many of its twists and turns, small hills and out-and-back loops. Participants enjoy exceptional event organization, race amenities, a family-friendly atmosphere as well as on-course support and entertainment including views and interactions with the zoo’s wildlife. The event also hosts the Toronto Club Championships.
By the Numbers: Participants: 4,000; Fee(s): $50-85 (10K); $40-60 (5K)
Charity: Toronto Zoo
Ratings: Unique/specialty: 4; Organization: 5; Amenities: 5; Experience: 5
Sunday September 13th: Saskatchewan Credit Unions Queen City Marathon, Relay, Half and 5K, Regina, Sask.
Certified, Boston Qualifier, Race Expo, Popular
Profile: Queen City is the largest and most popular event in Saskatchewan’s provincial capital that often sells out. The marathon begins with a 3K loop of Wascana Park, one of Canada’s largest urban parks. The rest of the flat, scenic and well-supported course then covers most of Regina’s pedestrian pathway system that is mostly paved with a few residential streets and crushed stoned paths. As well as the marathon and half options, five-person teams compete in the popular relay event. There is also a popular pre-race health expo and pasta dinner, as well as all the expected pre- and post-race amenities.
By the Numbers: Participants: 3,000; Fee(s): See website
Ratings: Scenery: 4; Atmosphere: 4; Organization: 4; Amenities: 4; Swag/medals: 4
Sunday September 13th: B&O Yorkville Run/Canadian 5K Championships, Toronto, Ont.
Certified, Popular, Fast/PB Course
Profile: A newer boutique event on the Ontario racing scene, the B&O Yorkville Run through Toronto’s upscale neighbourhood has sold out in past years. The event also hosts the Canadian 5K Championships and sees a wave of elite runners take on the fast but fair 5K route that begins and ends near the upscale Toronto shopping district at Jesse Ketchum Park. A mass participation race follows shortly after. Participants can expect lots of swag both in their race kits as well and at the post-race reception, including unique hors d’oeuvres from local restaurants and a signature item from B&O.
By the Numbers: Participants: 1,200; Fee(s): $50-100
Charity: YMCA Toronto, Prostate Cancer Canada, Jesse Ketchum Public School and more
Ratings: Organization: 4; Refreshments: 5; Swag/medals: 5; Getting to/from: 4
Sunday September 13th: Longboat Toronto Island 5K & 10K Run
Certified, Popular, Historic Event
Profile: The Island Run is Toronto’s oldest 10K event and celebrates 35 years in 2015. The flat and fast courses are run on a combination of roads, trails and the lakeside boardwalk, taking participants on a scenic tour of the Toronto Islands. Participants also enjoy a race shirt inspired by native artworks, a unique finisher’s medal and popular post-race BBQ lunch.
By the Numbers: Participants: 1,500; Fee(s): $45-60 (10K & 5K)
Charity: Start2Finish, Pathways to Education
Ratings: Scenery: 4; Family-friendly: 5; Refreshments: 5; Swag/medals: 4
Sunday September 13th: Hampton Five Miler, Hampton, N.B.
Profile: Now in its 15th year, the Hampton River Runners 5 Miler is a family-friendly event that takes place late summer in Hampton, about 45 minutes from Saint John. The 5M/8K is part of Run NB’s Super Series and is also the provincial championship. The course is fast and provides a scenic tour of the surrounding areas. Post-race refreshments and awards follow.
By the numbers: Participants: 500; Fee(s): $25-35
Ratings: Scenery: 4; Organization: 4; Amenities: 4; Swag/medals: 4
Sunday September 13th: Canmore Rocky Mountain Half, Alta.
Profile: A contender among Alberta’s most beautiful running events. The half marathon course follows a scenic route through woodlands, along mountain streams and through a historic mine site with stunning views of Rocky Mountain scenery. Flat and fast 10K and 5K races are also offered. Carpooling to the event from Calgary, one hour away, is encouraged.
By the Numbers: Participants: 2,400; Fee(s): $65-95 (Half); $45-75 (10K); $35-65 (5K)
Charity: CAUSE Kids
Ratings: Scenery: 5; Challenging: 4; Amenities: 4; Swag/medals: 4
Sunday September 13th: Winnipeg 10 and 10, Man.
Profile: As the name implies, this popular end of summer event features popular 10-mile (16.1K) and 10K races and new to 2015 will be a 30K race as well, all which take place from Memorial Park near the Manitoba Legislative Building. All routes are run on out-and-back courses along the scenic Assiniboine River to their respective turnaround points. There a few minor hills on the otherwise flat and fast course. There is post-race food provided by Subway, souvenir tech tees, finishers’ medals, massages and draw prizes.
By the Numbers: Participants: 750; Fee(s): $30-65 (10M); 30-55 (10K); $40-85 (30K)
Charity: The Children’s Hospital of Manitoba
Ratings: Scenery: 4; Atmosphere: 4; Amenities: 4; Swag/medals: 4