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Fall fun runs to plan for

Stay fit and have fun in the South Sound

The fall is the perfect time to lace up the running shoes and run through the leaves. Photo courtesy of Tacoma Metro Parks

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Think just because summer is coming to a close in the South Puget Sound that it's time to hang up those running shoes and retreat to the inside of a gym?

Think again.

The great running tradition is alive and well in our region, even as the days grow shorter and the leaves begin to change color.  This fall, there's something for everyone. Holiday-themed runs, running for a great cause, runs that test your strength and endurance and runs that take you into the nighttime (and even some runs that involve a little libation at the end),  are just some of the makings of a great fall fitness season.

Check out the sampling below of some of the great running events happening in our area.


Run Wild
Explore the wooded beauty of Northwest Trek and support the organization's conservation efforts. Entry includes park entrance and tram ride to see the animals who call the park home, post-race.

  • Sept. 19, 8 a.m., 11610 Trek Dr. E., Eatonville. Entry fees vary. Registration and race information:

Free to Breathe Run and Walk
This run/walk is in its seventh year and supports efforts for lung cancer awareness. Enjoy the beautiful Tacoma waterfront, too.

Race for a Soldier
This half-marathon (along with short kid's fun run and a two-mile run/walk option) raises funds and awareness to help soldiers and their families heal.

  • Sept. 27, 8 a.m., Gig Harbor YMCA, 10550 Harbor Hill Dr., Gig Harbor. Entry fees vary. Registration and race information:


Oktoberfest Northwest 5K Stein Dash
Beer and running? Sure! Race the course and finish at the largest beer garden in Pierce County!

  • Oct. 11, 11:30 a.m., Puyallup Fairgrounds, 110 9th Ave. SW, Puyallup. Entry fees vary. Registration and race information:

Black Cat Fun Run
Grab your glow sticks and flashlights and descend into Tacoma's Point Defiance Park's spooktacular Five Mile Drive for this family friendly, holiday theme run/walk.

  • Oct. 17, 6:30 p.m., Point Defiance Park, 5400 Pearl St., Tacoma. Entry fees vary by race. Registration and race information:

Spooktacular 5K Sprint
Olympia's first ever Halloween-themed run! Funds raised will go to the Thurston County Food Bank FORKids program.

  • Oct. 24, 9:15 a.m., Priest Point Park,

2600 East Bay Dr. NE, Olympia. Entry fees vary. Registration and race information:


Norpoint Turkey Trot (20th Anniversary Run)
Do a pre-dinner calorie burn on Thanksgiving Day morning to get you revved up and ready for that turkey dinner!

  • Nov. 26, 9 a.m., Center at Norpoint, 4818 Nassau Ave. NE, Tacoma. Entry fees vary. Registration and race information:
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