Our City’s biggest race is right around the corner! The 23rd Annual Santa Clarita Marathon, presented by Parkway Motorcars, returns to our beautiful trails and paseos Nov. 3 and 4. Residents and visitors alike will enjoy an exciting series of events this year, and there truly is something for everyone in the family to enjoy. Whether you plan on competing in a race or cheering on the runner in your family, don’t miss your chance to take part in this wonderful community event!
This may be our Marathon’s 23rd year, but there are a lot of firsts for this year’s event — starting with the debut of the Santa Clarita 10K race, presented by Boston Scientific. This 6.2-mile course provides a perfect middle ground for runners who have conquered the 5K distance but may not want to take on a half-marathon. The 10K, which will officially open the Santa Clarita Marathon weekend on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 7 a.m., will also be the first race to take runners across the iconic Iron Horse Bridge. Marathon and half-marathon runners will also cross the bridge.
You may not know this, but the Iron Horse Bridge was constructed in 1898 and originally spanned a portion of the Colorado River before it was moved to Santa Clarita following the St. Francis Dam disaster of 1928. At the time, Southern Pacific Railroad officials needed to replace the destroyed bridge over the Santa Clara River that was a vital connection through the region. We are excited for runners to pass over this piece of local history!
Saturday will also include the Mayor’s Walk, presented by Henry Mayo Fitness & Health, which is a leisurely, non-competitive stroll of approximately three miles along portions of the South Fork Trail and paseos. At 7 a.m., Mayor Laurene Weste will kick off the event and you will have a chance to chat with her along the course. Following the Mayor’s Walk is the 5K race at 8 a.m., which covers a distance of 3.1 miles and is designed for those wishing to run and track their time.
The Santa Clarita Health & Fitness Expo, presented by Boston Scientific, will open to the public on Saturday, Nov. 3 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) and Sunday, Nov. 4 (9 a.m. to 1 p.m.). Located in the northern parking lot at the Westfield Valencia Town Center, near Magic Mountain Parkway between Auto Center Drive and Citrus Avenue, the Health & Fitness Expo allows residents and visitors to discover and connect with over 50 health-related vendors and information booths.
During the Health & Fitness Expo on Saturday, children will be able to conquer an inflatable obstacle course in the Kid’s Fitness Challenge, presented by Kaiser Permanente. The Kid’s Fitness Challenge will be available from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday only, and all-day passes can be purchased at the expo for $10 per child. The first 300 children will receive a special event shirt!
That brings us to Sunday, when the marathon and half-marathon will take runners on a beautiful tour of Santa Clarita. Both races begin at 7 a.m., and though the majority of both events take place on trails and paseos, there will be plenty of opportunities to find a spot to cheer on the runners as they make their way toward the finish line.
Did you know that there are two special challenges as part of this year’s races? The Santa Clarita Marathon is introducing the Double Feature and Trilogy. In addition to honoring the rich history of film and television in Santa Clarita, the names of the challenges also refer to the difficulty of each. In the Double Feature, runners commit themselves to completing two events during the weekend. Trilogy challengers are going to run the 5K and 10K on Saturday before taking on either the half-marathon or marathon on Sunday. Talk about endurance!
Those who have registered for and successfully complete either the Double Feature or Trilogy challenge will also earn an additional medal to mark their accomplishment.
I’ll be rooting for all of our participants this year and hope to see you on the course or cheering on runners as they pass by. You can learn more about the Santa Clarita Marathon and register online before Oct. 28 by visiting SCMarathon.org.
Bill Miranda is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].