Running for serious runners and unicorns

Carol EvansOur Town Outdoors

The Chinese new year, which starts Jan. 25, is the Year of the Rat. But from this vantage point, 2020 looks like the year of racing.

Knoxville Half Marathon training programs begin Monday, Jan. 6, with Fleet Feet Sports. The programs are geared toward seasoned runners who want to set a personal record or work on their endurance. Meanwhile, there’ll be Knoxville Marathon Relay training program Q&A sessions at 5 and 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 9, at Fleet Feet Sports.

If you’re already ready to run, you have a choice of two challenges on Saturday, Jan. 11. The “I Just Want To Be a Unicorn” half marathon starts at 9 a.m. at Volunteer Landing and features our greenway and then heads across the beautiful Tennessee River. You’re encouraged to wear unicorn attire to stay warm and celebrate.

You’re encouraged to dress like a unicorn for this race!

There’s also a 5K that starts at 9:15 a.m. along with a fun run. The event honors families that have been affected by DIPG or any childhood brain cancer/tumor. Proceeds benefit the Julia Barbara Foundation and its mission of helping families affected by childhood brain cancers.

Also starting at 9 is the “Some Like It Cold” event – 5K, 10K and half marathon using the Knoxville Greenway path in and around Victor Ashe Park. The half marathon uses a multi-loop course to keep runners in the park.

On Sunday, Jan. 12, the Wanderers’ Trail Race at 2 p.m. offers a meandering 5K course through the woods at Maryville College. There’s a Kids’ Trail Mile that starts at 1:30 p.m.

Our Outdoor Knoxville calendar has details on these races along with weekly fun runs, mountain biking activities and more. Don’t forget, this is the last weekend for Knoxville’s Holidays on Ice at Market Square. The rink closes after Sunday.

Carol Evans is executive director of Legacy Parks Foundation, a nonprofit devoted to ensuring that our community enjoys exceptional recreational opportunities, natural beauty and open spaces, and that those assets exist for generations to come.



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