11 Local Long-Distance Races Worth Training For

Get ready for your next marathon, half-marathon or five-K with our handy guide.

All this Boston Marathon talk got us thinking about training for another big race. Whether you’re raring to go in a few weeks, or you need the whole summer to train, here’s a list of local marathons and half-marathons (and a few five-Ks) for which to train. Two of the races are Boston Marathon-qualifiers, so maybe you'll qualify for the big race along the way.


1. Race: Cox Providence Rhode Races Marathon, Half Marathon

Date: May 3, 2015; 7:30 a.m. (marathon), 8 a.m. (half marathon), 8:15 a.m. (five-K)

Running Route: It’s an out-and-back course that starts in downtown Providence and travels along the Providence River and waterfront past India Point Park through the Brown University campus and into the East Side, where you’ll meet up with Blackstone Boulevard.

Goodies: Official race tech tee (in your choice of three colors), free photos emailed to you after the race, a finisher medal for marathoners and half-marathoners, post-race recovery area consists of food and beverages for the athletes and one complimentary beer to all participants of legal age.

Cost: Before April 28: $100 (marathon); $75 (half marathon)

On-site expo: $110 (marathon); $80 (half marathon)

Race Day: $120 (marathon); $85 (half marathon)

Boston Marathon Qualifier: Yes


2. Race: Swamp Meadow Covered Bridge Half Marathon and Five-K

Date: May 10, 2015, 9 a.m. (half marathon), 9:30 a.m. (five-K)

Running Route: Follow scenic and rolling country roads out through the Swamp Meadow Covered Bridge and then return to the Foster Fairgrounds in rural northwest Rhode Island.

Goodies: Technical shirts and medals for all half marathoners; T-shirts for all five-K runners; pint glasses to overall and age group winners; post-race refreshments including fresh fruit and pastries; make-your-own goodie bag and much more.

Cost: Before April 26: $60 (half marathon); $30 (five-K)

Before May 9: $70 (half marathon); $35 (five-K)

Race day: $80 (half marathon); $40 (five-K)


The race starts at Fort Adams. Photo courtesy of Gray Matter Marketing.

3. Race: Newport 10-Miler and 2.2 Mile Fun Run

Date: June 7, 2015, 8 a.m.

Running Route: The race benefits the Fort Adams Trust and features Newport’s scenic coastal views and the mansions of Bellevue Avenue, starting at Fort Adams and finishing on the parade field.

Goodies: All participants will receive an event shirt. Harpoon will also offer all event participants of legal age a complimentary post-race beer inside the fort.

Cost: Before June 3: $50 (10-miler); Fun run ($30)


4. Race: Bristol Independence Rhode Race

Date: June 28, 2015, 6:30 a.m.

Running Route: A partnership with the Bristol Fourth of July Committee, this race speeds through patriotic Bristol, where the streets are decked out in red, white and blue. Go past the America's Cup Museum, through picturesque Colt State Park and finish against the coastal backdrop of Independence Park.

Goodies: Official race tech tee (in your choice of three colors), free photos emailed to you after the race, finisher medals and a family-friendly post-race festival with food trucks, music and fun.

Cost: Before May 1: $60

Before June 1: $65

Before June 23: $70

On-site: $75


5. Race: Narragansett Bay Half Marathon and Five-K

Date: July 19, 2015, 7 a.m. (half marathon); 7:15 a.m. (five-K)

Running Route: The half marathon will start and finish at historic Pierce Memorial Stadium. The course will head east on Veterans Memorial Parkway and return on the East Bay Bike Path with panoramic views of Narragansett Bay and the downtown Providence skyline.

Goodies: All finishers in the half marathon and the five-K will receive a finisher’s medallion. All early entrants will receive the race T-shirt.

Cost: Before June 30: $60 (half marathon); $27 (five-K)

July 1−19: $65 (half marathon); $29 (five-k)


6. Race: Blessing of the Fleet 10-Mile Road Race

Date: July 24, 2015, 6 p.m.

Running Route: A 10-mile course through historic Narragansett, ending at the Towers on the ocean adjacent to the seafood festival.

Goodies: Runners receive official Blessing of the Fleet T-shirts as well as prizes.

Cost: Registration begins in May.


7. Race: East Bay Half Marathon and Five-K

Date: Aug. 16, 2015, 7 a.m.

Running Route: The course starts and finishes at Pierce Memorial Stadium, heading out on Lyons Avenue and continuing on Veterans Memorial Parkway and returning on the East Bay Bike Path, with beautiful views of Narragansett Bay and the city of Providence.

Goodies: Technical T-shirts and all participants will receive a finisher's medal in the half and 5k.

Cost: $32 (half marathon); $20 (five-K); $10 (kids fun run for ages ten and younger)


8. Race: Surftown Half Marathon and Five-K

Date: Sept. 13, 2015, 7:30 a.m.

Running Route: An out-and-back 13.1-mile loop that starts and finishes near Misquamicut State Beach in Westerly and heads along Atlantic Avenue toward Weekapaug and along Watch Hill Road.

Goodies: A technical shirt (long-sleeved for the half, short-sleeved for the five-K), a finisher’s medal and a great post-race party. This event is part of the Misquamicut Fallfest Weekend with entertainment, amusements, children’s events, classic cars, food and craft vendors, fireworks and more.

Cost: Before Sept. 3: $75 (half marathon); $30 (five-K)

Race Day: $80 (half marathon); $35 (five-K)


9. Race: Jamestown Half Marathon

Date: Sept. 19, 2015, 6:30 a.m.

Running Route: Set on picturesque Conanicut Island and looking out over Narragansett Bay and Newport’s Pell Bridge.

Goodies: Event T-shirt, finisher’s medal, finish line food and beverage and free photos emailed to you after the race.

Cost: $60. The price goes up after April 30.


Ocean Drive in Newport. Photo courtesy of Gray Matter Marketing.

10. Race: Newport Marathon and Half-Marathon

Date: Oct. 11, 2015, 7:30 a.m.

Running Route: All the beauty and grandeur the City By the Sea has to offer. The course will traverse downtown Newport, the famous Fort Adams, iconic Ocean Drive and Bellevue Avenue and possibly enter neighboring Middletown (pending).

Goodies: The first $15 from every entry fee is donated directly to five official charities. A finisher’s medal and technical T-shirt will be given to all participants. Food and beverages will be provided at the finish area and you will receive a goodie bag.

Cost: Before April 30: $77 (marathon); $57 (half marathon)

May 1−July 30: $87 (marathon); $67 (half marathon)

Aug. 1−Oct. 6: $97 (marathon); $77 (half marathon)

On-site Oct. 9, 10 and 11: $107 (marathon); $87 (half marathon)

Boston Marathon Qualifier: Yes


11. Race: Colt State Park Half Marathon and Five-K

Date: Nov. 8, 2015, 9 a.m. (half marathon); 9:30 a.m. (five-K)

Running Route: Beautiful waterfront course in scenic Bristol, Rhode Island.

Goodies: Technical shirts to the first 800 half marathon runners, and cotton T-shirts to the first 200 five-K runners. Finisher medals to all half marathon finishers, and pint glasses to overall and age group champions. Fresh fruit, pastries and more at the finish line and make-your-own goodie bags. Twenty percent of all entry fees support the East Bay Striders Scholarship Fund and additional donations will be made to the Mount Hope High School cross country and track teams.

Cost: Before Oct. 25: $60 (half marathon); $30 (five-K)

Before Nov. 7: $70 (half marathon); $35 (five-K)

Race Day: $80 (half marathon); $40 (five-K)