There are a lot of fun things to do in Philadelphia, but for the amateur athlete who loves to run, there are many unique ways to get involved. Whether it’s dressing up in your favorite 90’s gear, or helping those in need, these five runs are sure to entertain.
Pretty Fly For a 5K
Break out the fanny packs and the old hammer pants for this 5k! This mid-July run is totally 90s themed. Participants will run, jog or walk the Eakins Oval at the Benjamin Franklin Parkway (pictured above). Runners will enjoy the freshest 90s tunes while running and will receive a “rad” fanny pack filled with 90s nostalgia, which includes Capri Sun juice pouches and snap bracelets. Proceeds from the event benefit St Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.
The Graffiti Run
Although it officially takes place in Camden, The Graffiti Run couldn’t be left out of this list. Runners will pack Campbell’s field in mid-May wearing head to toe white clothing. Throughout the run, non-toxic, non-rash inducing color will be dumped on participants at various “graffiti zones.” The run is not designed for those looking for serious competition, and is intended to include people from all fitness levels in the experience.
Hot Chocolate 5k
Established in 2008, this late April 5k (with a 15k option) has been dubbed “America’s Sweetest Race.” Here, participants start at the Art Museum steps and run for chocolate. Although the chocolate might be delicious, the truly sweet part is helping others in need. The proceeds of the run benefit the Ronald McDonald House charities, a foundation that provides free or low cost “home-away-from-homes” for families of children facing serious medical issues.
The Lemon Run
This 5k is a Philadelphia classic and unique to the city. Starting at Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park, this November Run draws approximately 2,500 participants annually. Runners don yellow tutus, shirts, wigs, and other fun accessories. All proceeds are donated to the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, a charity founded by 4-year-old Alexandra Scott to find a cure for childhood cancers. In 2013, The Lemon Run raised a staggering $250,000 for the organization.
Ugly Sweater Run
When the weather outside is frightful, a 5k might not seem so delightful. However, this unique and festive experience makes sure runners have a fantastically seasonal experience. Typically, this run takes place mid-December and is located in Fairmount Park. Runners are encouraged to break out their best ugly sweater Christmastime looks and lace up their sneakers, as well as bring a new and unwrapped toy to benefit Toys for Tots. At the finish line, hot cocoa and the choice of Sam Adam’s Winter Lager, Boston Lager or Angry Orchard Hard Cider are provided free of charge.
– Images and text by Breland Moore and Gwen Begley.