Photo by Flickr user Dave Herholz
Exercise is tough; between work, cooking meals, paying the bills, and happy hour, who has time to put together a consistent routine? However, while it’s midway through August and September gets closer, the weather will start to transition away from Memphis’ brutal summer humidity, so check out this list of competitive and charity runs around town to build up some fitness, have fun, and donate to good causes.
Elvis Presley 5K
August 13, 8:00 am
Elvis Week wouldn’t be Elvis Week without, well, an Elvis-themed 5K? Based all around Elvis Presley Boulevard, the 5K will benefit Livitup Inc., an organization dedicated to helping those with disabilities. The first 1,500 participants to cross the finish line will receive a special Elvis Presley 5K medal, while every entrant will be entitled to a specially branded Elvis T-shirt. Afterward, join other runners at the finish line for a post-race party full of beer, music, and water. For those feeling bold, kill two birds with one stone and run in costume so you can immediately enter the Best Dressed Elvis and Priscilla contest.
Registration: $30; elvispresleyrunandwalk.com
Breakaway Bardog 5K
August 28, 9:00 am
For those with a less Elvis-inclined focus while running, look no further than the Breakaway Bardog 5K. The course races through the heart of downtown Memphis, and all proceeds will go toward St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. After the race, reward yourself with one of many activities that Breakaway Running and Bardog Tavern have put together, including a dunk tank, a meatball eating contest, a raffle, free food, and live music. Every participant receives a T-shirt and goody bag, while the first 150 lucky entrants will get a special beer mug.
Registration: $35; racesonline.com/events/breakaway-bardog-5k
September 5, 8:00 am
Another race based in downtown Memphis, the Chick-fil-A 5K will take runners by Beale Street and the Mississippi River before culminating in a finish on the infield of Autozone Park. The event supports Junior Achievement of the Mid-South, a nonprofit that strives to teach students about workforce readiness and financial literacy through hands-on programs. The race is open to all ages, and if parents have small children to take care of, strollers are permitted. Afterward, enjoy complimentary Chick-fil-A food and drinks. For kids who don’t want to do a full 5K, a Kids Dash option is available. Younger children do a lap of the bases and cross the same finish line as the 5K, where they will receive a runner’s bib, T-shirt, and finisher’s medal.
Registration: 5K, $25; Kids Dash, $10; cfa5k.racesonline.com/register
Cooper-Young Friday 4-Miler
September 16, 10:00 am
Take a tour of the Cooper-Young neighborhood with the Cooper-Young Festival Friday 4-Miler. The race coincides with the popular Cooper-Young Festival, so runners can finish the race and enjoy the rest of the festivities as they please. Proceeds go toward the Cooper-Young Community Association, which works toward maintaining the great neighborhood and fostering a friendly spirit between its citizens and businesses. So, support this great community and ensure the Cooper-Young Festival continues with participation in their 4-mile race.
Registration: $30; cooperyoung4miler.racesonline.com/register
St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer
September 24, 9:00 am
St. Jude gets in on the action to help raise money to continue their important mission. First, sign up a team comprising friends and family. Then, find sponsors who will support your team and help fuel St. Jude’s fight against cancer. The race is open to participants of all ages, with both a walk and 5K options available. Teams that raise $100 will be eligible for the official event T-shirt, while those who bring in more than $250 became a member of St. Jude’s Fearless Fundraiser Club and earn additional gear. So gather your team and get ready to run to end cancer.
Registration: Walk, $10; Run, $20; kids five and under are free; stjude.org/get-involved