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Vancouver Marathons and Other Running Races

Scotiabank Half Marathon Runners

Vancouver is host to a number of running races each year, including major ones like the BMO Marathon, Scotiabank Half Marathon and 10K Vancouver Sun Run.

Due to health concerns about the coronavirus, most of Vancouver’s significant running races were cancelled in 2020. Some were cancelled in 2021 as well, while others simply took place as virtual events. Hopefully more will be able to take place as live events in 2022.

 

Marathons, Half Marathons, 10K and 5K Runs

Below is a calendar list of the city’s main running races. Some are huge events, like those mentioned above. The popular races can attract tens of thousands of participants and just as many spectators.

Other races in our list are smaller and limited to only a couple of hundred entries. Some are along level urban streets and others are up rugged trails through the mountains.

In short, there’s something for everyone (except for people who simply don’t like running!).

 

The Big Easter Run

 

January Vancouver Runs

 

February Vancouver Runs

 

St. Patrick's Race Crowds in Stanley Park
St. Patrick’s Day 5 K Run in Stanley Park

 

March Vancouver Runs

  • Big Jungle Run – a new event in the Lower Mainland (as of 2022), this is a family-friendly “fun run” that happens at Burnaby Lake Park.
  • St. Patrick’s Day 5K Run – a colourfully green race around Stanley Park on a weekend around March 17th. Costumes are highly encouraged for this holiday-themed race.
  • Vancouver’s Hot Chocolate Run – run, jog or walk 5K, 10K or FunK (0.6km) at Stanley Park.
  • Shamrock’n Race – 5K, 7 miler and half marathon running races around Burnaby Lake in mid-March.
  • Cap Crusher – a rugged 12K and 24K run through the trails at Capilano River Regional Park starting at the Cleveland Dam. Race capacity is just 200 participants. There is also a 1 km kids run with free registration.

 

Vancouver Sun Run
Vancouver Sun Run

 

April Vancouver Runs

  • Big Easter Run – a fun, social and family-friendly Easter-themed running event at Jericho Beach. It happens on the Easter Long Weekend (which is sometimes in March but more often in April).
  • Up the Creek Run – in late March there is a 5K, 10K and 500m Kids’ Run. The trail starts at the Hyde Creek Rec Centre in Port Coquitlam. Cost is about $35 or so, but free for children participating in the kids run.
  • Vancouver Sun Run – one of the world’s largest 10 km runs takes place in mid-April. During the run, you get to see all of downtown Vancouver including Stanley Park. There are thousands of people ready to cheer you on at different places throughout the racecourse.

 

BMO Marathon Starting Line
BMO Vancouver International Marathon

 

May Vancouver Runs

 

5K Foam Fest
Vancouver 5K Foam Fest

 

June Vancouver Runs

  • World Vision Charity Run – a 6-km charity running race in Maple Ridge. 100% of the money raised goes to fund water projects in the Republic of Congo in Africa. (Interestingly, 6 kilometres is the average distance people have to walk for water in the developing world, which is why the race is this distance).
  • 5 Peaks Mt. Seymour Race – the third of six events in the 5 Peaks series, with a 6K, 12K, 1K Children’s Challenge and 3K Timed Kids’ Race at Mount Seymour Provincial Park at 1700 Mount Seymour Road.
  • Seek the Peak – a race benefiting breast cancer research from Ambleside Park in West Vancouver to the top of Grouse Mountain’s Grouse Grind in mid-June.
  • Father’s Day Walk/Run – 2K, 5K and 10K strolls, walks and runs around Burnaby Lake benefiting the BC Prostate Cancer Foundation on Father’s Day Weekend.
  • Scotiabank Half Marathon – a major 5K and half-marathon race in late June.

 

Scotiabank Half Marathon Start
Scotiabank Half Marathon

 

July Vancouver Runs

  • 5 Peaks Cypress Mountain Race – the fourth of six events in the 5 Peaks series, with a 6K Sports Course, 11K Enduro Course, 1K Children’s Challenge and 3K Timed Kids’ Race on July 12 at Cypress Provincial Park.
  • Knee Knackering North Shore Trail Run a thirty-mile trail run recognized by Running Wild magazine as one of twenty-five most challenging races on the continent. The run usually goes from Horseshoe Bay to Deep Cove along the North Shore’s Baden-Powell Centennial Trail and climbs some 8,000 feet along the way. Just over 250 runners participate and are selected by lottery.
  • Bucking Hell – brutal but beautiful 15K, 50K and 2-person 50K relay running races through the North Shore mountain trails beginning and ending in Deep Cove.

 

August Vancouver Runs

  • 5 Peaks Whistler Blackcomb Race – the fifth of six events in the 5 Peaks series, with a 6.6K Sports Course, 10.6K Enduro Course, 1K Children’s Challenge and 3K Timed Kids’ Race at Whistler-Blackcomb.
  • SeaWheeze Half Marathon – a 21.1K run from the waterfront by the Convention Centre, through downtown Vancouver, along the False Creek seawall, over the Burrard Street Bridge twice, through the West End, around Stanley Park and then back to the start. The cost includes access to the Sunset Festival in the evening at Stanley Park.

 

September Vancouver Runs

  • Coho Run – a 14K run ending at the annual Coho Festival at Ambleside Park in West Vancouver.
  • Run for Women – a 5K walk/run, 10K run and 1K Little Steps run for kids benefiting the BC Women’s Hospital & Health Centre Foundation at UBC’s Wesbrook Village.
  • Terry Fox Runs – fundraising run with multiple venues around the Lower Mainland including at Stanley Park.

 

Runners on Stanley Park Seawall
Second Beach at Stanley Park

 

October Vancouver Runs

 

November Vancouver Runs

  • Boundary Bay Marathon – a 5K, 10K, half marathon, Boston-qualifying marathon and 4-person marathon relay starting at Boundary Bay Park’s Centennial Beach.
  • The Great Trek – a 5K, 10K and half marathon at UBC (and formerly called the Fall Classic).
  • The Phantom Run Trail Race – 12.5 km, 19.5 km and 24.5 km trail runs starting at North Vancouver’s Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve.
  • Vancouver Historic Half – a 5K, 10K, half marathon and half marathon relay around Stanley Park’s seawall.
  • Vancouver Undie Run – an unconventional 2 to 3-km run where participants run in their underwear to raise money and awareness about cancer and other men’s health issues as part of Movember.

 

Big Elf Run

 

December Vancouver Runs

  • Santa Shuffle – a 5K Fun Run and 1K Elf Walk at Stanley Park with proceeds going to the Salvation Army.
  • Big Elf Run – a fun running event where participants get a complimentary elf toque! The event includes 1 km, 5 km, 10 km and 15 km routes.

 

Other Information

Other articles that might be of interest include the following: