Running with the Kenyans!


The Beach to Beacon 10 K finishes at the Portland Head Light. Don’t let the snow mislead you. The race is held August 1, 2015. There’s a pretty good chance the snow will be gone then.

To use a Maine phrase, you have to be “wicked” fast to run the Beach to Beacon 10K.  And this has nothing to do with your running abilities.  Registration for this incredibly popular race literally fills up within about 5 minutes!  This year’s online registration opens to the public on Friday, March 13 at 7:00 a.m. So if you want to run this amazing race, start limbering up your fingers!

This year marks the eighteenth Beach to Beacon 10K.   The race, which was founded by gold medal Olympic marathoner and native Mainer, Joan Benoit Samuelson, attracts world class runners. The route begins on a quiet, wooded road and travels through scenic Cape Elizabeth.  The course is lined with exuberant spectators who offer encouragement, upbeat music, and welcome mistings from their garden hoses. Runners are rewarded with periodic gorgeous views of the ocean.  The last portion of the race has several rolling hills.  As you near the end of the race you turn into Fort Williams and run along a curvey uphill portion for a short distance before you enter the last approximately .1 mile that is packed with spectators. Portland Head Light, the most photographed lighthouse in the US, is visible just beyond the finish. The combination of the dazzling Atlantic Ocean and this quintessentially Maine lighthouse make it truly the most spectacular finish to any race we have run.

My long-time friend, Mary, first introduced me to this race in what I believe was the inaugural running of this now famous race. Mike and I have run it several additional times over the years and we always feel honored to be able to take part in such a renowned event. We have run scores of races and The Beach to Beacon is truly the most phenomenal race we have done.

Dave McGillivray, Boston Marathon race director, is the race director of the Beach to Beacon 10K.  So it is no surprise that the entire race is impeccably organized.  The volunteers are fabulous. The route is scenic with just enough hills to make it feel like a bit of a challenge. But one of my favorite parts of the race is the awards ceremony when a veritable “Who’s Who” in the running world is presented as the winners are announced.  Runners from Kenya and Ethiopia are always in the top spots. Having the opportunity to run in the same race as these legendary athletes makes the race just that much more exciting.

State: Maine

Quest Race #: 1

Date Run: August 7, 2010 (as well as other years)

Bottom Line: The Beach to Beacon 10K offers a stunning course and the opportunity to run with world class runners. Whether you come to race or to watch, being on the Maine coast in August is the perfect time to experience our fabulous home state.

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