Friday, June 14, 2024

Run for (family) fun

YMCA Coastal Carolina Run Series gets you and your kids off the couch this year

How many times have you told your kids to go outside and run around? If you’re like most parents, probably too many to count. And if your kids are like most kids, they probably responded with audible sighs and eye rolls. But kids need to be active. And running in particular helps young people sleep better and concentrate more. It also helps improve their mood, according to a study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

So how do you get kids to run around when they don’t want to? You could try nagging them. Or you could enter fun runs—as a family. Fortunately, there are several coming up this year designed just for yours.


The family that runs together …

The YMCA Coastal Carolina (YCC) Run Series spans the whole year with events ranging from 1-mile fun runs to 10K road races. The goal is to inspire community health through running while also bringing families together to help them establish lifelong habits of self-respect and healthy living.

And, of course, there are prizes.

The top three males and the top three females at the end of the series will walk away with cash prizes. Prizes will also be awarded to the top male and female performers in each age group. And don’t worry if you’re not particularly fast. The scoring system is designed so that participation is valued along with speed and placement. So the more events you run in, the more points you’ll accumulate, even if you don’t place in the individual races. That means it’s possible to outscore a faster runner who has not participated in as many events.
In order to qualify for prizes, you must participate in at least three races throughout the year. You’ll be automatically entered into the series after completing your second race.

Nine times the fun

Each of the races included in the YCC Run Series is organized by nonprofit groups with the purpose of raising funds for local charitable organizations.



Spring into Health 5K and 1 Mile
Saturday, March 23
Southport, NC
Benefiting: Brunswick Wellness Coalition
This race begins at Dosher Memorial Hospital and takes you through historic downtown Southport and along the picturesque waterway. Register here.

The New Balance Wilmington Beach Dash
Sunday, March 31
Kure Beach, NC
Benefiting: The YMCA Youth Sports Scholarship Fund
This beach obstacle course at Fort Fisher State Recreation Area is approximately 1.4 miles long with blast stations throughout. Designed for all ages and abilities. Register here.

Marine Chevy Shuffle 5K
Saturday, May 11
Jacksonville, NC
Benefiting: Girls on the Run and STRIDE
Beginning and ending at Northside High School, this 5K loops around Jacksonville Commons. Join more than 1,500 runners and walkers in the final 5k for Onslow, Carteret and Jones Counties Girls on the Run and STRIDE programs. Register here.

EmergeOrtho 5K
Saturday, May 18
Wilmington, NC
Benefiting: Girls on the Run and STRIDE of Coastal Carolina
The EmergeOrtho 5K is a celebratory ending 5K for New Hanover, Pender, Duplin, Brunswick and Sampson County Girls on the Run and STRIDE programs. It begins and ends at Port City Community Church. Register here.

YMCA Tri-Span 5K and 10K
Saturday, July 13
Wilmington, NC
Benefiting: LIVESTRONG at the YMCA
This is the oldest three-bridge 10K course on the east coast, which will have you running over the Memorial Bridge and finishing on Water Street. The 5k option starts at Battleship North Carolina and ends downtown. Shuttles will transport participants back to the starting line. Register here.

Go Jump in the Lake 5K and 1.5 Miles
Saturday, Aug. 31
Boiling Spring Lakes, NC
Benefiting: Southport Rotary and New Hope Clinic
This flat and largely paved race ends on the banks of Spring Lake, where jumping in the water to cool off after your run is highly encouraged! Register here.

You Call It Turkey Trot
You choose the day
You choose the location
Run any Turkey Trot in the month of November and earn five YCC participation points. All you have to do is register for the virtual run or submit a photo of your race results to earn your points.

Axis Physical Therapy Merry Fitness 5K
Saturday, Dec. 7
Jacksonville, NC
Benefiting: Girls on the Run and STRIDE of New River YMCA
Festive holiday attire is encouraged for this celebratory ending 5K for the Girls on the Run and STRIDE programs in Onslow and Carteret counties. Registration information coming soon.

William H. Craig Race for Life 5K
Saturday, Dec. 14
Wilmington, NC
Benefiting: The Bill Craig Memorial Fund
The William H. Craig 5K is the end of the season celebration 5K race for Girls on the Run, Heart & Sole, and STRIDE participants. Starting at Legion Stadium in Wilmington, NC, the race course takes you along the scenic Greenfield Lake. Register here.

For more on the YCC Run Series, including prize information, rules and age divisions, check out the program info.

Explore more of the family-friendly programs available with your YMCA here.

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