18 Running Events to Keep You Active This Spring & Summer

Looking for a fun way to reach your fitness goals this year? Whether you’re a beginner interested in a quick 5K competition or an experienced marathoner in search of another challenge, there are running events to suit every athlete happening around Virginia in 2017. Sign up for a solo run, gather a group of friends to conquer the challenge together, or you can even bring along a stroller for the little ones to a few of these runs for a family-friendly event!


Mad Anthony Mud Run—Waynesboro

Date: February 25, 2017

Held at Coyners Springs Park, the Mad Anthony Mud Run is always a bit of a wild card for racers, with temperatures in the previous five years ranging 6 degrees to 60 degrees. After the race, the event hosts a bonfire and serves beer from Seven Arrows Brewing Company. Each race participant gets two free beers after running the 4.5 mile mud-filled trail. Sign up for this one soon, as registration closes February 22. Learn More & Register


Hardywood Shamrock 3 Miler—Richmond

Date: March 12, 2017

running race on monument in richmond

You can’t celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Richmond without a craft beer, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t earn your drink first. Runners celebrate this annual holiday by dressing in green and running three miles during the Hardywood Shamrock 3-Miler. Afterwards, spend the afternoon at Hardywood brewery with live music, excellent craft beer, and an array of St. Patrick’s festivities. Learn More & Register


Marine Corps 17.75k—Dumfries

Date: March 25, 2017

17.75 miles may seem like a random distance for a race, but the Marine Corps 17.75K recognizes the year that the U.S. Marine Corps was established. Honor these brave soldiers with a run through Prince William Forest Park outside of Quantico, where Marines wait to congratulate runners and provide bonus passes that allow them to skip the lottery in the renowned Marine Corps Marathon held in the fall. Learn More & Register


Martinsville Bulletin Half Marathon, 5K, & Relay—Martinsville

Date: March 25, 2017

Sponsored by the local YMCA, the Martinsville Bulletin Half Marathon, 5K, & Relay Race course goes through beautiful uptown Martinsville. The running event is in its seventh year, and to get you in shape for whichever race you plan on participating in, the Martinsville YMCA offers a 16-week training program catered to your running goals. Learn More & Register


Hell Climb 10k+—Pembroke

Date: April 1, 2017

With nearly 1,800 feet of elevation gain during the 6.5 mile run, the Hell Climb 10K+ is aptly named. The race begins at the base of Mountain Lake and finishes at the summit, making the entire run an uphill trek. This race is not for the faint of heart! Learn More & Register


Run for the Animals—Onancock

Date: April 2, 2017

Benefitting the local animal organizations that serve the Eastern Shore of Virginia, Run for the Animals features a half marathon, 10K, and 5K for runners of every experience level. The race begins at the historic Onancock School and is followed by a festival. Leashed dogs and strollers are permitted. Learn More & Register


Be Bold 4 Miler—Nellysford

Date: April 8, 2017

running event

Cider lovers, we have a race for you, too! The Be Bold 4 Miler spans four miles with stunning mountain views in the background and ends at Bold Rock Cidery. The post-race party includes cider tastings, local food trucks, and live music. Learn More & Register


Dismal Swamp Stomp Half Marathon & 5k—Chesapeake

Date: April 8, 2017

The Dismal Swamp Stomp Half Marathon & 5K is a flat road course that meanders through the wild forested wetlands of the Dismal Swamp. Choose the 5K for a beginner’s level run or attempt the half marathon if you’re a more experienced runner. Stick around after the event for live music, food, and craft beer from nearby Big Ugly Brewery. Learn More & Register


Petersburg Half Marathon & 5k—Petersburg

Date: April 22, 2017

Love history as well as running? Sign up for the Petersburg Half Marathon & 5K, where you’ll run through a battle re-enactment in Petersburg National Battlefield. The course is fairly flat and open, and with the motivation of the booming cannons, you’ll have a great chance of achieving a personal best time! Learn More & Register


Blue Ridge Marathon, Half Marathon, & 10k—Roanoke

Date: April 22, 2017

Blue Ridge Marathon

The Blue Ridge Marathon, Half Marathon, & 10K is known as “America’s toughest road marathon”, and it more than lives up to its name. Marathon runners climb three mountains on their course, with an elevation gain of more than 7,430 feet, and the half marathon and 10K options are no cake walks, either. Although it is a challenging event, the scenic mountain views are a huge payoff, and the course finishes at Roanoke’s Downtown Music Festival, offering a well-earned reward of live music, great food, and local craft beers. Learn More & Register


Ribbon Run—Brambleton

Date: April 22, 2017

Runners participate in the Ribbon Run’s 5K and 10K events, as well as a Kids’ Fun Run, to benefit Step Sisters’, a local group whose mission is fighting breast cancer and providing support to those impacted by it. Attend the post-race breakfast provided by the Blue Ridge Grill to refuel after your run. Learn More & Register


Colors of Cancer—Tazewell

Date: April 29, 2017

The Colors of Cancer 5K and 10K runs raise money for cancer research and cancer patient assistance. Wear a white shirt to this fun run and get “decorated” at each kilometer with non-toxic colored cornstarch. Strollers are permitted. Registration not yet open.


Grayson Highlands 5k & Half Marathon—Mouth of Wilson

Date: May 5 & 6, 2017

As the highest altitude race in Virginia, the Grayson Highlands 5K & Half Marathon provides some of the most spectacular views for runners. The race goes through some extremely rocky and unfinished sections for some serious elevation gain, making this one of the tougher runs in Virginia, but the vantage points and the chance of seeing the wild ponies in Grayson Highlands State Park make this course a must-do for the dedicated runners. Learn More & Register


Rugged Maniac—Petersburg

Date: May 6, 2017

If you’re looking for a running event that allows you and your friends to have fun, get dirty, and not take the time or pace too seriously, sign up for the Rugged Maniac in Petersburg. This obstacle course features mud pits, trampolines, fiery hurdles, and a giant water slide, making it virtually impossible to take the challenge too seriously. The course ends with free beer and a festival that includes fun contests for the participants. Learn More & Register


Uncorked Half Marathon—New Kent

Date: May 6, 2017

If you’re both a wine and running enthusiast, sign up for the Uncorked Half Marathon, a 13.1 mile race that ends at New Kent Winery. After the race, relax with a massage, attend a yoga session, or get a bite to eat with the race brunch package. And of course, don’t forget to treat yourself to some of their award-winning wine. Learn More & Register


Dominion Riverrock Half Marathon, 10k, & 5k —Richmond

Date: May 19-21, 2017

Dominion Riverrock is the largest outdoor sports and music festival in the nation, so of course there are plenty of races available for runners of every experience level, including the Bust the Banks Trail Half Marathon, the James River Scramble 10K Trail Run, and the Filthy 5K Mud Run. The races begin and end at the main festival site at Brown’s Island, where you can celebrate completing your run with live music, air dog competitions, excellent festival food, and local craft brews. Learn More & Register


Virginia Wine Country Half Marathon—Leesburg

Date: June 3, 2017

Wine Country Half Marathon

Participate in the Virginia Wine Country Half Marathon to experience the beauty of the scenic vineyards and wineries of Northern Virginia while you run. The event starts and ends at Doukenie Winery, where attendees can enjoy wine tastings and live music after conquering the 13.1 mile course. Learn More & Register


Moonlight Bootlegger 5k—Roanoke

Date: June 30, 2017

Avoid the mid-day heat that makes summer marathons nearly unbearable when you sign up for the Moonlight Bootlegger 5K, an evening trail run in Roanoke followed by bluegrass music and moonshine cocktails at the after party. Learn More & Register


Whether you’re a beginner interested in conquering your first 5K or an experienced runner looking to add a few more marathons to your year, Virginia has a running event for you. Sign up today to stay active this spring and summer!


© pkeppel for Virginia’s Travel Blog, 2017. |

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Patricia Keppel

We are FUN! We are RVA! We support local business and charities! Life is good!