Registration is now open for the Ironstone Derby 5K & Kentucky Derby Party which will be held in Andover, Massachusetts on May 6th.
The Ironstone Derby is an afternoon charity 5K, USATF-certified race & barbecue followed by a Kentucky Derby party – all on Kentucky Derby Day. Sleep in, and then come to the 5K, kids stick-horse race, barbecue and after-party at Ironstone Farm!
Ironstone Farm’s mission is “To provide therapeutic, educational and recreational opportunities using horses and the working farm environment to help people achieve optimum quality of life.” Proceeds from the race benefit the work that Ironstone Farm does on a daily basis so please consider registering for this race and support a great cause!
After the race, runners can enjoy an amazing barbecue dinner and stick around the beautiful Ironstone Farm grounds on Kentucky Derby Day.
The cold air had vanished a bit on Sunday and it was a great morning for the 21st Annual Doyle’s Emerald Necklace 5 Mile Road Race in the Jamaica Plain section of Boston, Massachusetts!
Doyle’s is pretty much one of the most iconic Boston bars you’ll find with a deep, Irish and political history in the city and is home to one of the premier road races you will find in the area. The five mile course is in support of local charities inclusive of the Boston Police Gaelic Column of Pipes and Drums who make an appearance as runners head out into the course and then play right near the finish line.
The course heads out into the Emerald Necklace of Jamaica Plain which is a rolling course of streets that surround a public park and makes for a great course. The hills are somewhat pronounced throughout the race and make for a moderately challenging course. A water stop is featured twice on the out-and-back route, with one appropriately staffed by Boston City Councilor Matt O’Malley.
The race was a Grand Prix event for the Thirsty Irish Runners club and a see of the TIR green was present everywhere you looked!
I finished Doyle’s with a time of 42:32, good for 8:30/miles. After running 16 miles the previous day, I felt great out there running and was quite pleased with my finishing time. If you have never done Doyle’s, be sure to flag this race as a must do next year!
Yesterday it was off to Easton, Massachusetts for the TCS Shovel Town 5K Run. With a perfectly early start time of 8AM the Shovel Town 5K afforded runners the ability to get a race in nice and early and then get on with the rest of Sunday. Saturday was an absolute washout of a day in Eastern Massachusetts with a wintry mix storm hitting the region therefore getting out on the pavement Sunday morning was a nice treat.
Race time temperatures at 8AM were still pretty chilly and a coat and running pants were the clothing options for the morning but no gloves or hat was needed.
The 5K course featured some of the same roads as the Hip Hop 10K, another great race taking place in Easton, Massachusetts. The race has a downhill to flat first mile with the second mile having a somewhat uphill to flat elevation to it. A nice, significant uphill kick is needed in the final mile as runners make their way back into the school grounds where the race starts and finishes.
Proceeds from the race benefits TCS, a Reform Synagogue providing spiritual guidance, cultural experiences and educational opportunities with members residing in Easton, Mansfield and many neighboring towns. TCS members and students actively participate in and support the larger community through commitment to many local charities.
I finished the TCS Shovel Town 5K with a time of 25:00, good for 8:04/miles.
A few years ago I swore off ever running two marathons in the same year. But like most runners, there is something not wired right in the mind of The Running Griffin so in 2017 it will be another two marathon year! In addition to running the Cleveland Marathon in May, I will be heading to Falmouth, Massachusetts in October for the Cape Cod Marathon!
This year will be the 40th running of the Cape Cod Marathon, the 25th year for the Marathon Relay and the 7th year for the Half-Marathon. I have participated in the Marathon Relay in the past with the Thirsty Irish Runners and can attest to this being a race you will not want to miss.
The Cape Cod Marathon race organizers pride themselves on going the extra mile for their runners and give tremendous personal service from start to finish on an absolutely beautiful race course. The beauty of Cape Cod will be on display this fall as runners toe the starting line and run 26.2 miles toward the finish.
Organized by the Falmouth Track Club, the Cape Cod Marathon generates significant charitable donations back to a variety of local charities and runners can feel good when registering for this race that they will be supporting so many good causes.
See you on Cape Cod in October!
Registration is now open for the 18th Annual Westford Road Race which will be held in the afternoon of Sunday, May 7th. The Westford Road Race features something for everyone with a Family Run taking place at 2PM followed by a 5K at 2:20 and the 10K start at 2:25.
Sponsored by Sullivan and Cogliano, Waste Management and Emerson Hospital – Westford Health Center, the Westford Road Race benefits the Westford Charitable Foundation which supports several charitable endeavors. To see some of the organizations and individuals that have benefited from the Westford Charitable Foundation, please click here.
All races start at the Abbot School on Depot Street in Westford, Massachusetts and feature professional timing and prizes for the top finishers. Tee-shirts are guaranteed to those runners who pre-register for the race. The race course is described as being the perfect mixture of challenging and serene as runners make their way through the idyllic, New England town of Westford.
To register for the 18th Annual Westford Road Race please click here.
Registration is now open for the Kittery Fire Association 5K Run and Walk which will be held in Kittery, Maine on May 21st at 9AM.
This is a great, family friendly race in support of the Kittery Fire Association. Children under 12 years of age may walk free of charge and participants over age 60 years will receive a $5 discount for the race. Pets and strollers are welcome at the race and the stroller category features a fastest stroller award.
In addition to a great course that is a fun, mildly challenging 5K (3.1 mile course) with some hills, the Race Director has done a remarkable job ensuring the morning is a complete event focused on raising funds for Kittery’s bravest. There will be gift certificate awards for age categories by gender and the fastest firefighter will also receive an award. Each runner will receive a raffle ticket at registration which will be for the numerous prizes to be awarded after the event.
After the 5K race, a kids run will take place at 10am!
A pancake breakfast is held the morning before the race on Saturday, May 20th from 7 AM to 10 AM and runners can register at the breakfast for the race the next morning.
Last weekend it was back to my hometown of Holyoke, Massachusetts to celebrate the high holiday of St. Patrick’s Day in a city once known as Ireland Parish. Needless to say, the Irish heritage of Holyoke runs deep in a city that prides itself on a St. Patrick’s day weekend complete with a 10k road race and a parade that brings hundreds of thousands of visitors to the city to partake.
The Holyoke St. Patrick’s Day 10k is one of the finest 10k races you will find that takes runners along a course that features some challenging up and down hill stretches and through streets lined with revelers cheering runners along the way. Groups will break out with Irish tunes playing, a bagpiper plays just shy of mile 4 and supporters hand out water and Gatorade along the way. (Just past the Mile 5 marker is an unofficial quick beer stop where a shot of beer can help refuel for the final mile, as well.)
As I am training for a marathon, I had to add on a couple miles so ran three miles down to the starting line of the race. I arrived in plenty of time to see the pre-race performance by the Mummers who had a great crowd cheering them on as they played their Irish tunes to fire up the crowd.
Though some significant snow hit the area the week before the race, the course was in relatively good condition. There were some spots where running became a bit narrow and some spots seemed thinner than normal with crowds due to snowbanks but overall the course was in decent condition.
I finished the Holyoke St. Patrick’s Day Road Race with a time of 55:10, good for 8:52/miles. Adding on some miles before the race, I was happy with the pace and look forward to returning for next year’s run.