Oregonians don’t need the excuse of a New Year’s resolution to lace up their running shoes. Running is in our DNA. Home to Nike and other national footwear brands, TrackTown USA (aka Eugene) and our abundance of trails, our running culture is celebrated statewide. We invite you to run with us. Here’s a look at just some of the more than 600 dashes, trots and full-on marathons held around the state.
Got some green running shorts? Then you’re ready for the Dirty Leprechaun 5K and 10K mud races (Tualatin), Shamrock Run (Portland) and St. Patrick’s Day Dash (Bend). While not on St. Patrick’s Day, brews, wines and ciders do await the finishers of Portland’s Bridge to Brews races in April.
Take a spring road trip to Eastern or Central Oregon for one of several races: Butte Challenge (Hermiston), Eastern Oregon Half Marathon (Spray) and Smith Rock Ascent (Terrebonne).
You may be tempted to stop and smell the flowers at these races, but keep moving: Lilac Run (Gresham), Pear Blossom Run (Medford) and Tulip Trail Run (Woodburn).
If you’re looking to really test yourself, these Oregon cities hold their annual marathons and half marathons in the spring: Bend, Eugene and Newport. Also find spectacular half marathons in Champoeg State Park and Lincoln City, plus the Hop Hop Half Marathon and Cinco de Mayo Half Marathon in Portland.
Celebrate your freedom to run at one of the state’s Independence Day events: Champoeg State Park, Coos Bay, Neskowin and more. The Butte to Butte on July 4th run in Eugene holds special meaning as a benefit for the nonprofit Oregon Track Club, supporting programs for youth, University of Oregon track teams and maintenance of Pre’s Trail in Eugene.
Do you need a little extra incentive? These races end with an adult beverage: Gorgeous Wine Country Relay (Dundee) and Public Coast Brewing 5K Fun Run (Cannon Beach).
Summer is the perfect time to take your running into the wilds of Oregon: Crater Lake Rim Runs & Marathon (Crater Lake National Park), Dam Marathon (Oakridge), Lake of the Woods (Klamath Falls), Timberline Marathon (Government Camp), Wild Rogue Relay (Jacksonville) and Wy’east Wonder (Parkdale).
Classic summer events include the Hood to Coast Relay, which tests teams from the top of Mt. Hood to Seaside. In Portland show your Rose City spirit in the Rose Festival’s Starlight Run.
Kick off autumn with a few Labor Day weekend runs, including the Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon in Independence, the very challenging Hardesty Hardcore Trail Run in Oakridge or the fun Bend Beer Run through Drake Park in Bend.
Celebrate Oregon’s homegrown Steve “Pre” Prefontaine at the Prefontaine Memorial 10K, which draws more than a thousand athletes along Pre’s old training route in Coos Bay.
Get into the full-season spirit with the Oktoberfest Road Race (Mt. Angel) and Pine to Palm 100 (Williams/Ashland). Grab your costumes for a Halloween-themed event like Run Like Hell (Milwaukie).
Ducks and Beavers go head-to-head in the Oregon Rivalry Run, held in Tualatin. And Coos Bay honors one of its own, University of Oregon star and Olympic champion Steve Prefontaine, in the annual memorial run (temporarily canceled) bearing his name. Other big races in the fall include the Columbia Gorge Marathon and Portland Marathon.
Apparently, Thanksgiving in Oregon is as much about turkey trots as it is turkey, with races in many communities. Portland hosts a popular Hood to Coast Turkey Trot at the Portland International Raceway.
Start the year off on the right foot by running on New Year’s Day: Deschutes River Half Marathon (Maupin), Resolution Run & Walk (Corvallis) and Resolution Run (Newport).
Demonstrate your true love of the sport during Tualatin’s My Muddy Valentine 5K and 10K mud runs, and the Winter Formal 5K (Corvallis), where prom dresses and ruffled tuxes go to die.
When December rolls around, ring in the season with one of the state’s many holiday runs including the Jingle Bells Run (Eugene) and Ugly Sweater Dash in West Linn.