A 16-month hiatus between the last Augusta Half Marathon and this year’s event isn’t hurting turnout.
With more than 1,000 participants expected to tackle a new course, race organizers are expecting their best event yet. The cost of the race is $55 through Tuesday, and will go up to $75. Participants can register through Saturday.
“Obviously people are responding and signing up,” said Brinsley Thigpen, executive director of the Augusta Sports Council. “If anything, I think it’s had a good effect and gave us a chance to rebrand and look at our marketing strategy.”
The 13.1 mile race will be held at 8 a.m. Feb. 26 and will begin and end at Enterprise Mill. Thigpen said the route will loop through downtown Augusta and that the majority of the course, more than 10 miles, is either flat or downhill.
Runners will go up Walton Way past The Partridge Inn and Augusta State University, turn on Highland Avenue and continue down Berckmans Road. From there, they will turn onto Washington Road and go past Augusta National Golf Club and make their way back toward Enterprise Mill. Instead of using Calhoun Expressway, though, they will run around Lake Olmstead before getting back on Broad Street and go past the new Kroc Center before returning to Enterprise Mill.
“It really highlights a lot of Augusta’s key locations,” Thigpen said.
The half marathon is not the only event next weekend. A race expo and athlete packet pick-up will be held Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Enterprise Mill Events Center.
Space is still available for the expo and is open to any vendor with a healthy lifestyle message, Thigpen said. Interested vendors may contact the Augusta Sports Council at (706) 722-8326, ext. 231.
Also Saturday, the Medals for Miles Fun Run will begin at Enterprise Mill at 4 p.m. Open to children in grades K-5, the Medals for Miles program encourages children to run or walk 12 miles on their own before completing the final 1.1-miles as a group during the fun run.
There is no cost to participate, but online registration is required and available at AugustaHalf.org.