Beer and running are two things that just belong together, like peanut butter and jelly or macaroni and cheese. It’s a trend that’s taken the race world by storm, proliferating in events that could be considered races with a drinking problem or beer festivals in disguise.
No matter what you call them, we’re not complaining! We’ve compiled this list of the best beer runs in the country to get you moving and boozing.
Sept. 9, 2017 | Somerdale, NJ
The Flying Fish 5K is a classic beertastic celebration that the whole family can enjoy! Ages 10 and up are welcome to compete in the race that starts and ends at the Flying Fish Brewery, where adult participants will receive a finisher’s glass full of award-winning Oktoberfish ale. From there, the party goes all day in coordination with the annual Somerdale Festival. Take a tour of the brewery, sip on more beverages in the Beer Garden, and enjoy live music, food trucks, cornhole and life-size beer pong.
Oct. 15, 2017 | Phoenix, AZ
With two distances, the Craft Classic lets you have a little more running with your beer if you’d like. Either way, you’ll receive a hearty side of swag with a commemorative pint glass (with free beer from Huss Brewing Co., of course), finisher’s medal, race photos and live athlete tracking. You’ll also get a sweet “On a Beer Run” t-shirt that’s perfect for your next run, whether it’s to the liquor store or not. Oh, and bring your A-game to the half marathon: the top male and female finishers win their weight in beer!
Feb. 24, 2018 | Boulder City, NV
This isn’t your typical race-and-drink fun run; here, you have to earn your beer. There’s a variety of distances in Blood, Sweat & Beers including a 5K, 10K, half marathon, 30K and marathon, but each one is a challenging trail course through beautiful Bootleg Canyon. While every finisher receives free beer and barbecue, you’ll have to complete the Dirty Double, running one distance during the day and another at night, to receive their signature Pilsner glass and some serious bragging rights.
May 21, 2017 | Boston, MA
The Harpoon 5 Miler combines some of our favorite things: charity, beer, and Boston. You’ll have to enter a lottery to be one of the 5,000 runners who gets to race on this out-and-back course each year, so keep an eye on this one! Once you’re in, you’ll run along Pleasure Bay and enjoy an awesome post-race party featuring keg bowling, dancing, two free beers and scrumptious Italian food to boot. Plus, your booze benefits a good cause: the race has raised more than $1 million for ALS research.
TBD 2017 | Oklahoma City, OK
Red Coyote’s Runtoberfest is another family-friendly beer run that you – and your kids – won’t want to miss. After a pleasant run through Oklahoma City’s Midtown neighborhood, kick back with live music and a few local brews in the COOP Aleworks beer garden. The youngins can enjoy their very own root beer, prizes for all athletes younger than 12, and an all-ages costume contest. Just be sure you sign up early to receive your Runtoberfest race shirt and commemorative beer glass!
May 6, 2017 | Long Beach, CA or July 17, 2017 | Chicago, IL
Tacos or beer? We couldn’t decide, so we’ll leave it up to you! The Tacos ‘n Beer 5K in California is a non-stop fiesta from start to finish with a mechanical bull, medals for all, mariachi bands, costume contests, and of course, free tacos and beer for every participant.
On the other hand, you can head to Chicago for the Burgers and Beer 5K. This evening race is a flat and fast course that ends at the home of the Chicago Bears. Every participant is offered a complimentary craft beer and burger (including veggie options)!
Sept. 16, 2017 | Cincinnati, OH
The Hudepohl 14K is a true beer lover’s run. Organized by the folks behind the Flying Pig Marathon, this race kicks off the city’s Oktoberfest celebration, which is the biggest outside of Munich! You’ll run past historic breweries all the way to the finish at Moerlein Lager House. Once there, you can feast on craft beer and chili cheese dogs with your fellow beer run fanatics. You’ll also take home a commemorative pint glass and bottle opener medal, so you can always relive this one-of-a-kind experience.
July 1, 2017 | Portland, ME
For craft beer connoisseurs, the Craft Brew Race series is the place to be. The walker-friendly 5K ends in Portland’s picturesque Payson Park, where you can play cornhole, listen to live music, browse food trucks and enjoy unlimited – yes, unlimited – samples from 30+ local breweries. Your non-running and/or non-drinking friends can also take part with a festival-only or Designated Driver ticket.
June 25, 2017 | Hampton, NH
To take full advantage of this beer run, you’ll want to complete 5 out of the 8 Smuttynose races that take place throughout Massachusetts and New Hampshire. You can take your pick from 5Ks to half marathons, but you’ll have to attend the final Will Run for Beer 5K to claim your super-swaggy “Will Run for Beer” wind jacket! Of course, completing five races won’t be hard with the scenic New England courses and cold beer waiting at every finish line.
June 3, 2017 | Bend, OR
The Bend Beer Chase goes a few steps further than your average beer run. It’s a 50-mile relay race that takes you to some of Oregon’s best breweries in a single day! Build a team of up to six friends and stop to enjoy a sample at each switch-off. At the end of the relay portion, you’ll run together for the final “Keg Leg.” Hope you’re thirsty because you’ll be stopping at 6 breweries along the final 2.8 miles. At the end, you can enjoy your favorite beers from along the course, live music, games, and even a Ferris Wheel!
What races have you saying “cheers”? Let us know in the comments below and connect with your fellow runners and beer drinkers on Athlinks.com!