Running on Big Island

So I like to pretend that I am a runner. In reality, that means that I move a bit faster than when I am meandering. “Real” runners would (and have) lapped me twice during any given distance. Nevertheless, I have racks of medals which prove I have at least finished (and in some cases won or placed in my age group) many races.

This section of “what to see on BI” is dedicated to anyone who would like to participate in one (or more) of our organized races. I have included here only runs in which I have participated….there are many more. Asterisks mark those races that are “medaled,” either for all participants or winners. Others are just for the fun of it! They are listed below in generally chronological order, starting in January….

…..with *Hilo To Volcano Ultramarathon. This is on the first Saturday in January, starting at the bayfront in Hilo and running along Highway 11 for 31 miles….all uphill, ending at Cooper Center in Volcano Village. Individuals and teams (relay) participate.

In February there is Waikamalo Challenge. It starts at Waikamalo Park in Ninole, follows either a 4 mile or 7 mile out and back course along the Old Mamalahoa Highway…it is hilly, often shaded but with areas of open field and frequent vast ocean views. Also in February is the Valentine’s Day 5k Fun Run (run tied together with a loved one…..)

*Big Island International Marathon is always the weekend nearest St. Patrick’s Day. Full, half, 10k, 5k and 2 mile fun runs are offered. The marathon race starts at the Canoe Sheds on Hilo Bayfront, runs north toward Peepekeo, then back to Richardson Beach and back to bayfront….other distances modify that. There is usually a Taiko Drum group starting off each group and offering “encouragement” as you pass on the “back” of out and back. Weather is usually marvelous-misty and cool!

Wayne Big Dog Scholarship 5k in May is sponsored by Big Island Road Runners Club, and raises funds for high schoolers who are part of the local running community.

*Kona International Marathon near the end of June. Currently starts at Waikoloa Hilton in North Kona district (in the past it was run in downtown Kailua-Kona along the bayfront, but moved north a few years ago). Not my favorite race as it is in the desert. In June. Along highway 19—which in that area is a vast lava field, but it finishes at the beach, so after running in the desert, cool off in the surf! …. Full/Half/10k/5k options.

*A Salute to Our Veterans 4th of July 5k Run at Liliuokalani Park in Hilo- a beautifully designed and maintained Japanese garden along the bayfront.

Mana 10’s in Waimea at about 3000 foot elevation. This is an area of gently rolling hills; part paved, part dirt road (Mana Road), either 10k or 10 miles. It is great preparation for…

….*Volcano Rain Forest Run. This Half Marathon/10k/5k and keiki (kids) fun run (and 0k!) is in mid August in Volcano Village (3500-4000ft elevation).

*Hilo Bay 5k and 10K in mid-September. Again a beautiful run around Liliuokalani Park and Hilo Bayfront.

Hilo Halloween 5k Fun Run and Free Kids Trick or Treating at end of October. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the Kona Ironman World Championship. No, I have not participated….but for those of such persuasion, it is the pinnacle-always mid October.

Wayne Big Dog Memorial Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving: canned goods and funds are collected for the local food banks.

Jingle Bell 5k Fun Run in mid December.