Can You Run the Outer Banks?

obx-marathonOne of the most beautiful marathons in the country, the 10th Annual Outer Banks Marathon and Southern Fried Half Marathon is this coming Sunday, November 7. With activities and races for the entire family spread out over the entire weekend, it is a perfect time to visit the Outer Banks.

Here is a quick breakdown of the weekend events.

Marathon Runner’s Expo

The festivities kick off at noon on Friday November 6th with the Marathon Expo. Runners must pick up their race packets at the expo including race numbers and timing chips prior to race day. There will also be a running clinic led by Tom Leddy, the author of Southern Fried Running and co-founder of R.A.C.E., a non-profit that raises money for homeless animals.

The Expo is being held Friday, 12-7pm and Saturday, 9am-6pm at the Dare County Youth Center located at 602 Mustian Avenue, Kill Devil Hills NC 27948. A wide variety of vendors will also be exhibiting over the weekend.

Challenge Events

One of the unique features of the Outer Banks Marathon weekend are the challenge events. These races take place the day before the full and half marathons giving runners an added test of their abilities.

The Outer Banks 8K and Buccaneer 5K are both are out and back type races. Both will begin and end at First Flight High School in Kill Devil Hills. The 8K starts at 7:30 am and the Buccaneer 5K heads out at 9:30 am this Saturday. Runners who complete a challenge event and the Marathon or Half Marathon will receive a special medal.

Super Saturday Events

You don’t have to be an experienced runner to take part in these family friendly activities including:

  • Family Fun Run – 1.2 mile Course, registration required
  • Diaper Dash – a free race for the smallest runners, ages 1-3
  • Pirate Display
  • Walk the Plank
  • Face Painting
  • Rock Climbing Wall

Pre-Race Pasta Party

Get your carbs on before the big race at the pasta party Saturday night. Held at the Beachside Bistro at the Sea Ranch Resort in Kill Devil Hills, runners can load up on bread, salad, and pasta. Tickets are required and there will be two different seating’s at 5pm and 6pm. Prices are $12 for adults, $5 for children 5-11, and free for kids under 5.

TowneBank Outer Banks Marathon

Known for its mixture of fast stretches and varying terrain along the coast, this Boston Marathon qualifying event has grown in popularity over recent years. Beginning in Kitty Hawk at 7:20 am, the race moves through Bay Drive and around the Wright Brothers Memorial in Kill Devil Hills before moving into the Nags Head Woods Nature Preserve.

Here the race turns into more of a trails course with off-road conditions between miles 10-13. After finding the pavement again, competitors will move through Jockey’s Ridge State Park, the largest sand dune on the east coast. The Washington Baum Bridge around mile 23 provides a tough test for all runners before the race finishes in the town of Manteo on Roanoke Island.

Southern Fried Outer Banks Half Marathon

Probably the most popular race of the entire weekend, this half marathon starts at 7:00 am on Sunday in Nags Head. It follows the same course of the second half of the full marathon. Many people choose to run this race because it bypasses the tough off-road portion of the main race, yet still challenge themselves with the 35 foot high Washington Baum Bridge.

Southern 6

Beginning at 8:45 am Sunday at the Tanger Shopping Outlets in Nags Head, this race covers the last 6 miles of the marathon course.

Post-Race Block Party

After all is said and done, it’s time to party! All runners will enjoy free food including North Carolina BBQ and the famous Sweet Potato Fries from 9am-2pm. Food for purchase will also be available for non-runners. Jonny Waters & Company will be providing the entertainment with live music throughout the event. While the awards ceremonies for both the half and full marathons will take place at 10 am for the half marathon and noon for the full.

Registration for all events is still available here.

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