Spook-tacular Running Events in the Valley

Written by Marilyn Hawkes Category: Health & Fitness Issue: October 2015

Photo courtesy Getty ImagesIf you’re looking for a fun way to get into the Halloween spirit and burn off a few calories before indulging your sweet tooth, there are plenty of running events on Oct. 31. There’s something for everyone, from serious runners to not-so-serious runners. But really – how can you take a zombie run seriously?

5K RunDead Zombie Run
If you register as a zombie, onsite make up artists will “zombify” you for Halloween. After that, run through a 5K zombie-infested course. Runners will be equipped with flags that represent their health status and zombies will try to steal the flags. Runners must make it to the finish line with at least one flag or risk becoming one of the “walking dead.” A portion of the proceeds will benefit Alzheimer’s disease research.
Victory Lanes Sports Park
22603 N. 43rd Ave., Glendale
Register: 5krundead.com

Halloween Pancake Run (5K/10K)
All runners and non-runners are invited to wear a costume for the 7:30 a.m. Halloween Pancake Run benefiting Gilbert High School’s Orchestra. Volunteers will start making and serving pancakes at 7:30 a.m. Guests and runners will be serenaded by the orchestra. Breakfast is free for runners, $5 for non-runners. A costume parade walk will take place at 9 a.m.
Gilbert Riparian Preserve
2757 E. Guadalupe Rd., Gilbert
Register: gilberthighorchestra.com (select fundraiser)

Haunted Half Phoenix
This half-marathon starts in the San Tan Mountains (runners will be shuttled from Crossroads Towne Center to the starting line) and finishes at Crossroads Towne Center. A headless horseman will start the race and all participates will receive a swag bag with a long-sleeve T-shirt, jack-o-lantern nylon bag and Halloween goodies. There are also a 5K and a half-mile run for children 12 and under.
Crossroads Towne Center
3757 S. Gilbert Rd., Gilbert
Register: thehauntedhalf.com/contact/#

Monster Mash and Dash
Dubbed Phoenix’s “Official Halloween 5K and Costume Party,” the day’s festivities start at 7 a.m. and include a “Kids' Spooky Sprint.” Dress in costume and run with Frankenstein to the finish line. If you beat him, you’ll be entered into a drawing for “monster-sized” prizes. Proceeds benefit West Valley high schools’ cross-country teams.
Rose Mofford Park
9833 N. 25th Ave., Phoenix
Register: tortoiseandharesports.com/monster

ThrillSeeker 5K Stunt Run
More obstacle course than run, the ThrillSeeker Stunt Run will give participants the opportunity to “experience heart-pounding challenges… while in a safe environment.” Other ingredients include the world’s largest inflatable water slide, a pole vault, food trucks, live music and a family-friendly kids’ 1K event. Costumes are suggested, but not required.
Salt River Fields
7555 N. Pima Rd., Scottsdale
Register: mudrunguide.com/event/phoenix-arizona-thrillseeker-5k-stunt-run-2015