Ready your running shorts for an incredible summer send-off. The 39th annual Mackinac Island Eight Mile Run & Walk, taking place Saturday, September 12, rounds up some 2,000 participants every year for a scenic, family-friendly race around storied Mackinac Island. The fast, flat course follows the perimeter of the island, taking in views of Victorian homes, harbors, beaches, rock formations, the Straits, the mighty Mackinac Bridge, and the island's quaint downtown district.
"Everything about the race is island in nature," says Anne Gault, who owns Gault Race Management, which operates the race in conjunction with the St. Ignace Kiwanis Club. "It doesn't have all the frills and fancy things—we don't have gatorade stations. It's fruit and water and the basic things, but what people get is the beauty and the fun. And people love how the town is full of runners before and after the race. It's like a gathering for runners."
The race is one of the oldest in Michigan—not to mention one of the most family friendly, too. Walking is encouraged, and a seperate kids race on the lakefront lawn of Mission Point Resort lets younger ones join in the fun.Bonus: Racers save on ferry fees to the island, and can catch a discount by overnighting at Mission Point Resort, where the race kicks off and finishes.
For more information and to register go to runmackinac.com or call 810-487-0954 or 659-6493.