Your Guide to 2015 Austin Races and Runs

Races and Runs

As I watched photos of runners and bystanders for the Austin Marathon and Half Marathon on my Instagram and Facebook feeds from my couch, I remembered that I had put participating in either the Capitol 10k or a sprint triathlon on my Austin Bucket List for this year. I guess now that it’s mid-February and the weather is mostly getting nicer, I should probably actually make a plan in the hopes that will happen.

Now that Valentine’s Day is over and in theory the candy train has stopped until Easter, are you thinking about getting in shape? Do visions of bathing suit shopping haunt you as they do me? For whatever reason, here is a list of upcoming races and runs happening in and around Austin, in case you want to get back into an exercise routine or could use a race as motivation to get off the couch and into those running shoes.

Puppy Love 5k Walk & Fun Run – Sunday, February 22nd
Distance: 5k
Location: Gupton Stadium, Cedar Park
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: No, but children under 6 can participate for free. Children 6 and older need to register.
Race/Course description: The Puppy Love 5K raises money for the Guide Dogs of Texas, the only guide dog school in the Lone Star state. They provide guide dogs to visually impaired Texans as well as offering unique client services such as specialized matching, training and follow-up. Each of their dogs is specially bred, raised and trained. Dogs are optional but highly encouraged.

Twisted 5k Brewery Run – Saturday, March 7th
Distance: 5k
Location: Twisted X Brewing Company, Dripping Springs
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: No obstacles, no mud, no colored powder, no neon lights!  The Twisted 5K is a great traditional, old school running event for anyone  who enjoys craft beer, food trucks and exercise. This event starts and finishes at Twisted X Brewing Co and runs the rural streets east of beautiful Dripping Springs, TX and finishes with a great post race party with beer tasting, food trucks and music.

ZOOMA Texas – Saturday, March 28th
Distance: Half marathon, 10k, 5k
Location: Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort & Spa, Bastrop
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: The ZOOMA Texas half marathon is a challenging course through the scenic Texas countryside with rolling hills. The 10K course includes portions of the half marathon course outside the Hyatt Lost Pines Resort property. The half marathon and 10K races share start lines. The 5K race has a separate start line on property. All races -the half, 10K and 5K – share a common finish.

Head for the Cure – Sunday, March 29th
Distance: 5k run and walk
Location: Camp Mabry, Austin
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: The Head for the Cure Foundation mission is to raise awareness and funding to inspire hope for the community of brain cancer patients, their families, friends, caregivers and other supporters, while celebrating their courage, spirit and energy.

Austin 10/20 – Sunday, March 29th
Distance: 10 miles (20 bands)
Location: The Domain, Austin
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No (minimum age to participate is 12)
Race/Course description: Our ten mile course is flat and fast – yes, really!  The big Austin hills that some people have trouble with are not in our part of town. Wide and fully closed roads will prevail on the USATF certified course. No running in tight packs right next to traffic at the Austin 10/20! Stages every half mile, five well stocked water stations with Gatorade, and premium medical support will be on course. Mile markers and 5K signs will be posted too. Porta-potties will be plentiful and visible and excellent SAG support will be provided.

Diva Dash – Saturday, April 11th
Distance: Half marathon, 10k, 5k
Location: Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort & Spa, Bastrop
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No, but there is a Family category for everybody in the family: moms, dads and kids. The Diva Dash is open to runners 7 and up. Participants under 12 need to run with a guardian.
Race/Course description: Forget barbed wire, fire pits and mud. We’re talking a female-only 5k course dotted with fun obstacles sure to challenge your agility, balance, strength and speed. Add in copious amounts of tutus, boas and bling, plus enthusiastic camaraderie, and you’ve got SHAPE Diva Dash. It’s amazing fun for ‘Girls of All Ages’!

Capitol 10k – Sunday, April 12th
Distance: 10k
Location: Start at Ann Richards Bridge (Congress Avenue) and finish at Auditorium Shores, Austin
Strollers allowed?: Strollers are allowed for your children, provided you opt in during your registration to inform us that you plan to push your child in a stroller. There is no fee required if child is registered as a passenger in stroller. We will provide an identifier for your stroller/child to wear on race day which can be picked up at the Cap10K Health & Fitness Expo. Strollers are defined as something that is pushed, not pulled. In addition to indicating on your registration that you plan to push your child in a stroller, we invite you to start in our new family friendly stroller area. In the interest of safety for you, your child(ren), and all participants, we have developed this special start area for you and your family.
Kids’ run?: No (2014 was the last kids’ race)
Race/Course description: The Statesman Capitol 10,000 is Texas’ largest 10K and the seventh largest in the nation, with over 18,000 participants in 2013. The race starts at the Ann Richards Bridge, which crosses over Lady Bird Lake (part of the Colorado River) and runs up to and by the Texas State Capitol Building. Bands playing live music line the race course, energizing the runners with upbeat entertainment as they wind their way along this scenic and at times, hilly, race route finishing back at Auditorium Shores on Lady Bird Lake. The 2015 Cap10k benefits The Trail Foundation.

Biggest Loser Run/Walk – Sunday, April 26th
Distance: Half marathon/5k
Location: Dell Diamond, Round Rock
Strollers allowed?: Yes, in the walk category
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: The Biggest Loser RunWalk is a non-intimidating race series designed to challenge America to get fit. You’ve been inspired by the hit reality show “The Biggest Loser,” now it’s time to get off the couch and hit the pavement and achieve your fitness goals. This race series will include a challenge for everyone.

Sunshine Run – Sunday, May 3rd
Distance: 1k, 5k and 10k
Location: Auditorium Shores, Austin
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: Kids are welcome to sign up for the 5K or 10K, but if they aren’t quite ready, they can run the Kids K. Yes, your dog can join in the 5K competition as well.
Race/Course description: Coordinated by volunteer members of the Young Men’s Business League of Austin, this downtown race will bring the community together to have fun, promote an active lifestyle, and raise funds for their worthy benefactor – the Austin Sunshine Camps.

The Spartan Race – May 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th
Distance: 8-10 miles with 24-29 obstacles (Sprint distance on the 16th is 3-5 miles with 20-23 obstacles)
Location: Reveille Peak Ranch, Burnet
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: Born in the scenic hills of Vermont, Spartan Race was created to bring the excitement of obstacle racing to spectators and athletes alike. Located on rugged Texas hills, this course features dusty trails, rocky crags, a beautiful stream and several ponds to create a true Texas adventure.

The Color Run – Saturday, May 16th
Distance: 5k
Location: Travis County Expo Center, Austin
Strollers allowed?: Yes (kids 5 and under can run with an adult free of charge and without registering)
Kids’ run?: No, but kids can register and participate
Race/Course description:  Less about your 10-minute-mile and more about having the time of your life, The Color Run is a five-kilometer, un-timed race in which thousands of participants, or “Color Runners”, are doused from head to toe in different colors at each kilometer. With only two rules, the idea is easy to follow:

  1. Wear white at the starting line
  2. Finish plastered in color!

Autism Speaks 8k Run – Sunday, May 24th
Distance: 8k
Location: Camp Mabry, Austin
Strollers allowed?: Yes (accommodations made for runners with special needs in both distances)
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: Named the “Best New Running Race in 2013″ by the Austin-American Statesman, the Autism Speaks 8k Run and the  First Leap Kids 1k Fun Run is an exciting and challenging race through the historic grounds of Camp Mabry in central Austin.

CapTex Tri – Monday, May 25th
Distance: International course (.93 mile swim, 24.8 mile bike, 6.2 mile run), Sprint Course (.46 mile swim, 12.42 mile bike, 3.1 mile run), SuperSprint Course (.25 mile swim, 6.21 mile bike, 3.1 mile run)
Location: Downtown Austin
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: Life Time Tri CapTex allows you to sightsee the sunny city of Austin. The race starts off with a swim in Lady Bird Lake and transitions to a bike toward the Texas Capitol. The triathlon finishes with a run around Butler Park that leads you right into our amazing post-race festival.Advertisement
Skees Greets Iron Girl Triathlon – Sunday, June 7th
Distance: 300 meter swim, 11.1 mile bike, 2 mile run
Location: Decker Lake at Walter E. Long Park, Austin
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a true newbie, the Skeese Greets Iron Girl Triathlon, presented by COEUR, is for you. Come along and experience a supportive and friendly environment for beginners and advanced triathletes alike.

Maudie’s Moonlight Margarita Run – Thursday, June 12th
Distance: 5k
Location: Streets bordering Lady Bird Lake, finishing at the American Legion Hall on Veterans Drive, Austin
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: Unlike other major fundraisers in Austin, this event allows ladies to trade the little black dress and heels for shorts and running shoes while gentlemen can leave their ties at home. While the attire is casual, the event raises critically needed funds for Austin’s beloved Butler Hike and Bike Trail.

Lake Pflugerville Triathlon – Sunday, June 21st
Distance: 500 meter swim, 14 mile bike, 3 mile run (Aquabike is 500 meter swim and 14 mile bike)
Location: Lake Pflugerville, Pflugerville
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: This is a fantastic venue for all levels of athletes whether you are a beginner or have completed numerous triathlons. For the intermediate and elite, it is a great opportunity to set new PR’s. You will feel right at home at this family-friendly event and it is a race you will enjoy since it is a fun course at a great location. The triathlon starts with a 500-meter swim in Lake Pflugerville with a sandy beach entry and an easy exit to a paved transition area. Then you are off on a 14-mile bike ride through the countryside with enough low rollers to keep it interesting. Racers will finish up with a 3-mile run around the lake on a flat crushed granite trail with water stops along the way. Pizza and ice cream for the finishers… can it get any better than that?

Keep Austin Weird Fest & 5k – Saturday, June 27th
Distance: 5k
Location: The Long Center, Austin
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: No, but kids can participate
Race/Course description: This is the Slowest 5K on the Planet! Slip into your weirdest costume, slap on your favorite light up running shoes, and throw your timer into Lady Bird Lake! We’ve put 10 outrageous Fun Stops on this year’s course. Bring your friends for the wildest, weirdest, and most memorable Saturday of summer!

Rugged Maniac Obstacle RaceSaturday, September 5th
Distance: 3 miles with 25 obstacles
Location: Travis County Expo Center
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No
Race/Course description: Register for the race and you’ll get a chance to run our 3-mile course where you’ll climb towers of shipping containers, rocket down a massive water slide, crawl through underground tunnels, leap over fire and experience some BIG new obstacles (trampolines?!)!  As if that weren’t awesome enough, before and after you run you’ll get to party with thousands of other maniacs in our day-long festival where you can ride mechanical bulls, pretend to be a kid in our adult bounce houses, dance your butt off in the festival and enjoy lots of new games and activities!

Zilker RelaysFriday, September 11th
Distance: 10 miles (2.5 miles per 4 runners)
Location: Zilker Park
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: The Zilker Relays is a 10-mile race with teams comprised of 4 runners.  Each participant runs a 2.5 mile loop from one central festival/transition area. The team concept of the Zilker Relays is not unique, but the combination of a relay, festival home base, drinks and music, make this experience a favorite for runners of all calibers and ages. You don’t have to train like a marathoner for this one. All you have to do is be willing to run/jog/walk/stroll 2.5 miles, enjoy live music and great food and get 3 of your siblings/kids/buddies/colleagues to come join you for this one of a kind running experience.

Blacklight Run – Saturday, October 31st
Distance: 5k
Location: Travis County Expo Center
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: No, but kids can participate (children 5 and under can run with an adult free of charge and do not need to register)
Race/Course description: Blacklight Run™ is a unique night 5K fun run focused less on speed and more on UV Neon Glowing fun with friends and family. Glowing participants come from all different ages, shapes, sizes, and speeds; every participant will get Glowed™ and has the time of their life. Whether you are an avid runner or a walk around the park walker, the 3 miles of the Blacklight Run™ course will have you glowing and waiting for the next one!

Run for the Water – Sunday, November 1st
Distance: 10 mile, 5k
Location: First Street Bridge
Strollers allowed?: Yes
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: Now in its ninth year, Run for the Water presented by Keller Williams Realty is the second largest fully charity-produced road race in Austin, Texas. The event is solely produced by and benefits the Gazelle Foundation, an Austin-based non-profit improving the lives of citizens of Burundi, Africa, through the building of water systems. Simply by registering to run, you are providing access to clean water for one Burundian for life.

Dirt Trails & Pony Tails – Saturday, November 21st
Distance: 5k & 8k
Location: Austin Ridge, Austin
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: No, open to women 14+
Race/Course description: A great spectator-friendly race venue with fantastic scenery, on-course water stops, a unique finisher’s gift, and a female-specific style top for each race. Freshly made pancakes, fruit, and hot coffee will be provided at the finish line.

Atlas Race – Saturday, November 21st
Distance: “The Boss”: 3-5 miles with 20+ obstacles, “The Ranger”: 7-9 miles with 25+ obstacles
Location: Rocky Hill Ranch, Smithville
Strollers allowed?: No
Kids’ run?: Yes (ages 4-8: half mile course and obstacles; ages 9-13: one mile course with obstacles)
Race/Course description: Picture in your mind seeing yourself cross the finish line of one of the most demanding race events on the planet. Imagine the feeling of accomplishing something you didn’t even know you were capable of. With a newly earned confidence, how would your life change? What else can you now take on?

Turkey Trot – Thursday, November 26th
Distance: 5 mile run, one-mile walk
Location: The Long Center
Strollers allowed?: Yes, but race organizers request that strollers start in the back. There is a separate timed division for stroller participants.
Kids’ run?: Yes, Kids K
Race/Course description: ThunderCloud Subs, Austin’s favorite neighborhood sub shop, held its first Turkey Trot in 1991. The ThunderCloud Sub Turkey Trot has since become a favorite Thanksgiving tradition for many Austin families and individuals who want to do something healthy and helpful before the big meal.

Pfeathered Pfun RunsThursday, November 26th
Distance: 5k & 10k
Location: Lake Pflugerville, Pflugerville
Strollers allowed?: Checking
Kids’ run?: Yes
Race/Course description: What better way to get your Thanksgiving Day started than with a great energy-raising run? Well, how about a Thanksgiving Day run that also supports local food pantries?

Craft Brew Races – Saturday, December 5th
Distance: 5k
Location: Travis County Expo Center, Austin
Strollers allowed?: No (21+ event)
Kids’ run?: No (21+ event)
Race/Course description: The Craft Brew Races is a 5k road race followed by a local craft beer festival. The series features races around the country in 2015. Runners and walkers are welcome to participate in the 5k. The post race beer festival will be held immediately following the race featuring 20+ breweries. This is a 21+ event. Whenever possible local food vendors and local musicians will participate as well.

HITS Austin – Sunday, December 20th
Distance: Marathon, half marathon, 10k, 5k, spring duathlon
Location: Circuit of the Americas, Del Valle
Strollers allowed?: Only in the Friends & Family Mile and 5k
Kids’ run?: Yes (Friends & Family Mile)
Race/Course description: Join the masses as HITS offers runners a mile to a marathon, as well as a Sprint Duathlon at this premier venue.  For beginners and multi-sport veterans alike, HITS Endurance is offering a unique experience for athletes to race on the same roads as some of the world’s most famed race-car drivers.


About Nicole Basham 793 Articles
A native Austinite and soccer-playing mom, Nicole uses her 10-year-old son as an excuse to rediscover her hometown through his eyes. In Thoreau's words, her mission is to "suck out all the marrow of life", or in her son's words, to cultivate in him a love of "advenchers".

2 Comments on Your Guide to 2015 Austin Races and Runs

  1. Great compilation! As a coach, just wanted to mention this link from the Road Runners Club of America that talks about “Buyers Beware”. There are some rather unscrupulous for-profit race directors who don’t always have the runners in their best interest. Supporting established, non-profit races (like ARC’s Daisy 5K or the CAP10K) are safe bets. Races with gimmicks you should check their history and their reputation so you don’t lose your money. http://www.rrca.org/education-advocacy/buyer-beware/ ACT Running

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