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Upcoming novelty and themed runs/walks

Insane Inflatable 5K
Run, climb and bounce through an inflatable obstacle course in this noncompetitive 5K.
Where: Rockingham Park, 79 Rockingham Park Boulevard, Salem
When: Saturday, Sept. 3, race time slots available 8:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Cost: Ranges from $65 to $100
Visit: insaneinflatable5k.com/manchester-nh
 
My Dogs are Barking 5K
You can bring your furry friend along for this dog-friendly 5K run/walk to benefit the Animal Rescue League of NH. Enjoy a pet fair afterward with food trucks, dog demonstrations and vendors.
Where: Derryfield Park, Louis Israel Martel Drive, Manchester
When: Saturday, Sept. 10, 10 a.m.
Cost: $30
Visit: mydogsarebarking5k.org
 
Bubble RUN
Walk or run through waves of colored foam at four different colored “Foam Bogs” along the course of this noncompetitive 5K.
Where: New Hampshire Motor Speedway, 1122 Route 106 North, Loudon
When: Saturday, Sept. 17, 8 a.m.
Cost: $50. Kids age 4 and under are free with paying adult.  
Visit: bubblerun.com
 
Rett’s Roost Superhero 5K & Kid Run
Come dressed like a superhero in honor of kids battling cancer. There will be superhero characters, entertainment, face painting, food, a photo booth and beer for the adults.
Where: Throwback Brewery, 7 Hobbs Road, North Hampton
When: Sunday, Sept. 18, 10 a.m.
Cost: $40 for adults, $15 for runners under age 16, $8 for kids fun run
Visit: rettsroost.org/event/superhero-5k-fun-run
 
Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day 5K
Wear green or Irish apparel at this run celebrating the halfway point to St. Patrick’s Day. The first 1,000 registrants receive a kilt.
Where: The Wild Rover Pub, 21 Kosciuszko St., Manchester
When: Sunday, Sept. 18, 10:15 a.m.
Cost: In advance, $30 for adults age 21 and up, $25 for youth ages 12 to 20 and $10 for kids ages 11 and under. On race day, $35/$30/$10.
Visit: millenniumrunning.com/halfway
 
Crusader Color Classic 5K
Be sure to wear white for this noncompetitive color run where you’ll be doused in vibrant colored powder along the course.
Where: Sweeney Park, Ferry Street, Manchester
When: Saturday, Sept. 24, 10 a.m.
Cost: $30 for adults and $20 for youth under age 18 in advance, $35/$25 on event day.
Visit: crusadercolorclassic5k.racewire.com
 
Manchester Zombie Walk
Wear your best zombie costume and play the part as you make your way through downtown. Free zombie makeup applications will be offered before the event begins. 
Where: Brady Sullivan Plaza, 1000 Elm St., Manchester
When: Saturday, Oct. 29
Cost: Free to participate
Visit: intownmanchester.com
 
Hallo-Weiner Hustle
In this relay race, runners in teams of four each run a mile, eat a hotdog and drink a beer before sending the next teammate off, all while wearing their Halloween costumes.
Where: McGarvey’s, 1097 Elm St., Manchester
When: Saturday, Oct. 29, 10 a.m.
Cost: $80 per team
Visit: active.com/manchester-nh/running/relay-races/hallo-wiener-hustle-2016
 
Trick or Treat Trot 5K & Creepy Crawler Fun Run
Arrive in costume to this Halloween-themed 5K run and kids fun run (ages 10 and under). There will be awards for the best costumes.
Where: Exeter Hospital Campus at Exeter Healthcare Building, 4 Alumni Drive, Exeter
When: Sunday, Oct. 30, 5K at 9 a.m., Fun Run at 10:30 a.m.
Cost: Depending on time of registration, $25 to $35 for adults, $20 to $25 for runners age 18 and under, $5 to $10 for kids fun run.
Visit: unitedinwellness.org
 
CHaD Trick-or-Trot 3K
Wear your Halloween costume. A Halloween festival precedes the main race at noon.
Where: Arms Park, 10 Arms St., Manchester
When: Sunday, Oct. 30, Kids Lil’ Pumpkin Runs at 2 p.m., main race at 2:30 p.m. 
Cost: $25 for adults age 21 and up, $20 for youth ages 12 to 20 and $10 for kids ages 11 and under.
Visit: millenniumrunning.com/trick-or-trot
 
Santa Claus Shuffle
The first 1,500 registrants receive a full Santa suit to run in for this Christmas-themed run. The Manchester City Christmas Parade takes place directly after the run at 4 p.m.
Where: Veterans Park, 889 Elm St., Manchester
When: Saturday, Dec. 3, Kids Elf Runs start at 2:30 p.m, main race at 3:15 p.m.
Cost: In advance, $30 for adults age 21 and up, $25 for youth ages 12 to 20 and $10 for kids ages 11 and under. On race day, $35/$30/$10.
Visit: millenniumrunning.com/santa
 
Yule Light Up the Night
Experience a winter wonderland as you run through the 2.5-mile Gift of Lights holiday drive-through display.
Where: New Hampshire Motor Speedway, 1122 Route 106 North, Loudon
When: Sunday, Dec. 11, 4:30 p.m.
Cost: $25 for adults and youth age 12 and up, $15 for kids ages 4 to 11, $10 for kids age 3 and under.
Visit: millenniumrunning.com/lights




Super (hero) fun
Quirky activities, costumes and more at novelty runs

09/01/16
By Angie Sykeny asykeny@hippopress.com



 From Santa suits to bubble blasters, novelty walks and runs offer all kinds of amusements and are ideal for families, runners who want to shake up their routine and anyone looking for a fun way to get active.

If you like getting creative with costumes, try a themed run like Rett’s Roost Superhero Run, where participants are encouraged to dress up like superheroes to show their support for kids battling cancer. Like many themed runs, it’s family-friendly, low-pressure, and features fun post-race activities like visits from costumed superhero characters, food, live entertainment, face painting, a photo booth and beer for the adults. While serious runners are welcome, Rett’s Roost Director Deana Cavan said she expects a crowd of mostly walkers and families with young children and strollers.
“It’s a good way to encourage healthy living for families and to get kids outside and to exercise,”  she said. “And events like this can be a fun way to teach kids how to get out and fundraise and do things for a good cause.”
Holidays provide plenty of opportunities for costumed running, too. Don your brightest green or Irish apparel at the Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day 5K, where the first 1,000 registrants receive a kilt, or get jolly for the Santa Claus Shuffle, which supplies the first 1,500 registrants with a full Santa suit to run in. 
There are multiple Halloween runs that encourage participants to dress up and include costume contests, trick-or-treating and other spooky festivities, but Intown Manchester takes a slightly different approach with its Downtown Zombie Walk.
“Everyone dresses like a zombie and goes growling and groaning down the street,” Intown Marketing Coordinator Julia Whitney said. “I think it’s something different and definitely brings an element of fun to getting out and walking with the family, and it’s fun to surprise people in downtown.”  
Most participants create their own zombie costumes and makeup, but for those who don’t, there are free makeup applications to help them get zombified before the event begins.   
Whitney says novelty walks and runs also allow participants to experience the area more fully than they could while driving by or running through in a competitive race.
“The runs like the Manchester Marathon are completely focused on running, but the ones like the Trick-or-Trot and the Santa Claus Shuffle give you a different viewpoint.” she said, “Even though they’re races, they’re more focused on having fun in downtown and with family.”
Crazy costumes aren’t the only way to get festive with your run. At the annual Yule Light Up the Night event at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, you can jaunt through the 2.5-mile Gift of Lights holiday drive-through on foot.
For a run that’s more interactive, try the Crusader Color Classic 5K, where participants are doused in vibrant colored powder at various points along the course (wear white for the best results), or the Bubble Run, where they walk or run through waves of blasted colored foam at four different colored “foam bogs.”
If you’re looking to shake things up even more, skip the run and go for an obstacle-course race like the Insane Inflatable 5K, where you’ll run, climb and bounce your way through a 5K-length inflatable obstacle course. It’s untimed, so you can tackle it at your leisure and bring the whole family if they’re up for the challenge.
“I think [a novelty run] appeals more to the masses and is not as competitive,” Cavan said. “There’s people who want to walk or families with kids who just want to have fun or do something for a good cause. Not everyone is a runner out there trying to get their best time.” 





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