24 Must-Do Nov./Dec. Races Across The U.S.


Big Sur Half Marathon
Nov. 17, Monterey, Calif.

Most runners are familiar with the legendary beauty of the Big Sur International Marathon in April, which is why it fills up within hours the day it opens registration. To experience some of that beauty without the hustling for a slot, sign up for November’s Big Sur Half Marathon, which, like the marathon, is extremely popular but isn’t in as high in demand. For those not up for a half marathon, the Pacific Grove Lighthouse 5K kicks off the day before.

Father Joe’s Turkey Trot
Nov. 28, San Diego

Most San Diego runners and walkers are at Father Joe’s Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. It’s a San Diego running tradition that has grown so large runners at the front of the start line can’t see the end of the pack. Taking place at Balboa Park, the 5K raises money for San Diego’s homeless community, and participants who donate $100 receive a Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Hoodie. Don’t forget to purchase one of the pies sold at the race—runners know that a Turkey Day 5K offers an extra excuse to eat whatever you want that afternoon and evening. Good luck, and bon appétit.

The Sweater Dash 5K
Dec. 7, Pleasanton, Calif.
Dec. 14, Anaheim, Calif.

We’ve all received an ugly sweater at least once, so instead of throwing it in your closet and forgetting about it, wear it to run The Sweater Dash 5K in Pleasanton on Dec. 7 or Anaheim on Dec. 14. Part of a nationwide series that proudly calls itself “The Ugliest 5K of Your Life,” these two races are great ways to sport a hideous top stashed in the back of a closet. (Prizes will be given out for the ugliest sweaters of the day.)  The race will also include a toy drive for needy kids, so participants are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy to donate.

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