August is runners’ month in Western North Carolina. A slate of races throughout the region will give athletes a chance to stretch their legs.
• The Main Street Mile Run for Children will be held at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 22, in downtown Waynesville. It ends in front of the courthouse after a one-mile jaunt down Main Street that is mostly downhill.
The run, now in its fifth year, will benefit the Shriners Hospital for Children in Greenville, South Carolina. The first 300 runners will receive a free race t-shirt, and a post-race party featuring live music by Fire Ball Coma, food, drinks, local beer and games for kids will be part of the fun. Runners will also get a loaded race schwag bag. Awards given to top racers. $20 until Aug. 21; $25 on race day. www.communityfitnessevents.com/waynesville-main-street-mile/
• The 33rd annual Maggie Valley Moonlight Run and Sunset Run will be held Saturday, Aug. 23. Hosted by the Town of Maggie Valley and the Maggie Valley Chamber of Commerce, the Sunset Fun Run for children will begin at 7:45 p.m., taking place entirely inside the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds. The 8K road race will start at 8:30 p.m., beginning and ending at the Festival Grounds after traveling up and back along Soco Road in the heart of Maggie Valley. The Sunset Fun Run will precede the adult race at 7:45 pm. $35 through Aug. 21 and $40 on race day for the 8K; $10 for the fun run. Awards will be given to top finishers. Register at www.imathlete.com/events/eventoverview.aspx?fEID=19010.
• The Franklin Riverfest 5K will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 23, along the Little Tennessee Greenway in conjunction with the first annual Riverfest Festival in Franklin, sponsored by the Franklin Daybreak Rotary. The 5K benefits several local charities. Cost is $20, or $25 after Aug. 14. www.franklinriverfest.com.
• The Rotary Club of Highlands will host its second annual Twilight Rock ‘n Roll 5K beginning 6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23, at Kelsey Hutchinson Park, with check-in beginning 4 p.m. Walkers welcome. The first 100 participants will receive a t-shirt, kids will get glowsticks, the all finishers will get a free beer from Ugly Dog Pub. Awards will be given to top finishers, and a concert lasting until 10 p.m. will make it a whole night out. Chairs, coolers and refreshments are encouraged. $30 pre-registration and free for kids under 10; $35 on race day. Register at www.active.com/highlands-nc/running/distance-running-races/twilight-rock-n-roll-5k-2014-7223630.