Sprint into Autumn: Fall Races in Metro Detroit

By: Scott Davis | September 8, 2014

Fall is in the air. If you’re anything like me, you are probably just slightly saddened by this because summer didn’t seem to last nearly long enough. Autumn brings beauty, though. Leaves are getting ready to change colors and sweater weather is nearly upon us. Fall also brings us many runs and races. All roads seem to be leading to the Detroit Free Press/Talmer Bank Marathon on Sunday, Oct. 19.

Whether you are looking for opportunities to train for the aforementioned event, or looking for other events such as color runs, obstacle courses, 5Ks or half-marathons, you can pretty much find all of the above in Metro Detroit this time of year (or any time of the year, for that matter). Here are just a few fun runs and/or runs for great causes.

Relays

Rockin’ Marathon Relay is this Saturday, Sept. 13 at Belle Isle. This is your standard 26.2-mile-long marathon, but with a twist. If you aren’t sure if you’re quite ready to run a full-marathon, then this may be the event for you. Put together a team of two, three or four and alternate relay laps! The course is made up of loops—each loop is only 1.2 miles to 2.2 miles long, so the course is contained in a smaller area. While one team member is taking his or her lap, the other team members may socialize with other racers, enjoy food and listen to live music. I would suggest eating lightly if you are about to go run a mile or two, though. If you are feeling brave, you may run the race solo! Registration is from 6:30 a.m. until 7:30 a.m. and the race begins at 8 a.m. Registration costs $55 a person before Thursday, Sept. 11 and $60 on race day.

Color Runs

Colors of Cancer 5K also takes place this Saturday, Sept. 13 at Rolling Hills Park in Ypsilanti at 10 a.m. This is a great event, with the mission of showing all of the representative colors of cancer and providing awareness for each type of cancer. Each color you get poured on you represents a different form of cancer. This is the first event of its kind for the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreations Commission, but the hope is to turn it into an annual event! All proceeds go to the American Cancer Society. Registration currently costs $40.

Michigan State Police 19th Annual Fall Color Run/Walk takes place on Saturday, Oct. 4 at gorgeous Maybury State Park in Northville at 9 a.m. The beginning of the race takes you on a hilly terrain with some dirt paths, but quickly turns into a paved trail with various small hills for the duration of the race. It is proudly hosted by the Michigan State Police and proceeds help the Thin Blue Line of Michigan provide assistance to families of fallen or injured police officers. Yes, you will in fact be doused with all kinds of colored powder. Registration for the event includes a raffle ticket, refreshments, and awards for top competitors in each age group. Registration for this event occurs from 7:30 a.m. until 8:45 a.m. Registration costs $20 before Wednesday, Sept. 17 and $25 after said date.

Obstacle Course Run

2014 Michigan Tough Mudder is at Michigan International Speedway and will separate the men from the boys, and women from the girls. This race will feature a lot of mud and several obstacles. Obstacles may include “Electroshock Therapy” (running through a field of live wires sure is a shocking twist), “King of the Mountain” (climbing up a 5 meter-tall “mountain” of hay and straw will make you feel like a king), “Pyramid Scheme” (use teamwork to help get your teammates and other runners to glory by forming a pyramid), and many more.  Parking and registration times will be announced one week before the event, so keep up with the website. If you complete this hellish course you get a shirt, headband and hard-earned brewski.

Other 5Ks/Road Races

The Drew Crew Walk, Run, Roll 5k and 10K Run/Walk is on Sunday, Sept. 21 at 9:00 a.m. at Fuerest Park in Novi. The Drew Crew was started to raise money for Andrew Clayborn, a local resident who suffered a spinal cord injury in high school that has left him paralyzed. He is now a quadriplegic student at the University of Michigan. Funds go toward Clayborn’s medical expenses and toward fighting paralysis as a whole. Participants will receive a t-shirt while supplies last (pre-registrants are guaranteed a shirt) and be timed by A2 Management. Medals will be awarded after the race. The race costs $35 for adults, $20 for kids ages 5 to 15 and $30 for University of Michigan students with valid ID. Registration is from 7 a.m. until 8:30 a.m. Read Clayborn’s story and support his cause!

5K Walk/Run for Excellence presented by Educational Excellence Foundation takes place at the Plymouth-Canton Educational Park on Sunday, Oct. 5 at 9 a.m. This is the inaugural race and is a family-friendly event on the 305 acre-campus. Participants receive a free t-shirt, race bib, timing device and more! Registering before Monday, Sept. 15 will score you the early-bird special of a $20 registration fee, while anything after that costs $25. Refreshments will be given out at the finish line and there will be prizes for the fastest runners in each age group.

Halloween Runs

Wicked Halloween Run takes place the weekend after the Detroit Marathon, but hey, avid runners aren’t going stop running after one big event. Plus, you get to dress up in Halloween costumes! The Wicked Halloween Run takes place on Sunday, Oct. 26 in Plymouth. You can either run (or walk) a 5K, 10K, or “Monster Mile.” According to the website, it is dubbed as the “Largest Halloween Run in the State.” The races run in different waves throughout the morning, and each 10K finisher receives a medal (10K is limited to first 2,500 participants). There will also be a costume contest, “Monster Mash Party” and age group awards. You don’t want to miss this, folks. Registration costs $25 to $75 depending on the race.

Of course these are just some of the races that occur daily in Metro Detroit. For more, please visit http://www.runmichigan.com.