We're almost halfway through 2016 and summer is fast approaching. What better way to get ready for beach season than training for a race? Classic, quirky, and fun, we've put together another handy list of The Best Half Marathons to run this year. Also check out our NEW list of 17 Best Half Marathons in 2017.
Trimble Racing and Orchard Street Runners host the 5th Midnight Half on May 27th with a start time of 11:00pm. Yes, you will literally be running at midnight. We've run this race before (left) and it's super fun! But you're on your own with a suggested course map running through the streets of NYC on a Friday night...
Twilight Half - Vancouver, Washington, July 9th
Sleep in, wait until the day cools down and run at 6pm. This summer evening half marathon gives out great race swag plus burritos and beer at the finish. There's also a 5k and 10k race option.
Beer, running, beautiful scenery and beer. What more do you want?! The Narragansett Summer Running Festival, with a 5k, 10k and Half Marathon, is in Massachusetts with music, Narragansett Beer, Downeast Cider and Pumpkin Pie at the finish line! There's also a Fall Gansett Festival, in case you didn't drink enough booze at the summer race.
"Yoga. Run. Party" is the mantra for this Lululemon-sponsored Half. The race runs along the Seawall in Stanley Park with great views of Coal Harbour and English Bay. Friday, Saturday, and post-race Sunday they offer free outdoor yoga classes, concluding with a concert (think beach chairs and Passenger). Make it a runcation- get to Vancouver a few days early to check out Grouse Mountain, Granville Island, the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Gardens, and do some SUP.
Now this is what we call a quirky and weird running race! Run along the edge of Area 51 along Highway 375 (officially named the Extraterrestrial Highway in 1996) in this alien-themed half marathon. The Half starts at half past midnight ~the better to see UFOs~ runs uphill to Coyote Summit for the first 6 miles, and finishes in the town of Rachel, NV at the Little A'Le'Inn restaurant. Distance options galore: 5K, 10K, Half Marathon, Marathon, and 51K. Glow-stick necklaces included, but BYO bottle for race-side refreshments* (Right, course map).
Run to Canada and back in this international Half Marathon and Marathon! You'll run through downtown Detroit, across the Ambassador Bridge into Windsor, and return Stateside via Windsor Tunnel. Bring your passport for this one, though there is a U.S.-only route option for the Half. We know @RunningBeerGeek will be running this one, so meet up with him there! And for all you Ravers Turned Runners like some of us, we know Detroit is the techno capital of the world -- possibly you can go out dancing after the race?!
Another midnight Half Marathon, run down the Strip at night past iconic Vegas landmarks- think that "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign, those fountains, and . The race day party kicks off with a concert; no word on who the 2016 headliner will be but Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Kid Rock, and Brooklyn-based Matt and Kim performed in past years. Post-race, runners get free access to multiple casino clubs. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.
What half marathons are YOU running this year? Have you run any of these races? Have you run any super fun or weird half marathons or other races? We totally want to run that quirky ET full moon half marathon -- anyone running it?