10 Fun Races for Families this Spring in the Upstate

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Are you looking for an in-person or virtual kid-friendly race in Greenville this season? Check out this list of some of the fun races for the whole family.

Greenville is a great place to go for a run, a jog or a walk. The weather is fairly cooperative, even during the colder winter months, to run outside all year round. But as the trees bloom and the milder temperatures are more predictable, getting in daily exercise is pretty easy and enjoyable. If you have little ones and a jogging stroller, running is a great way to get in a workout and entertain your kids. While you may not be as fast as you are without the jogger, entering a local race is a fun way to enjoy the great weather, meet other runners, and run your way around Greenville. Plus, if you choose one of the virtual options, you have the flexibility to choose when and where to run your race.

Most in-person races allow jogging strollers and only ask that they start in the back of the pack as to not be a safety hazard to other runners, but just double-check the race websites to be sure. There are plenty of excellent opportunities in the next few months for parents and kids to enjoy the excitement of race day (if nothing else, the free t-shirt and granola bar at the end of a race is enough to get me to go).

Never ran a race before? They are a lot of fun and incorporate a nice camaraderie among participants: “We are all going to be in a lot of pain soon!” If you’d like to give it a shot, the popular Couch to 5K program is a good way to get started. There are also some mom-friendly running/walking groups in the area such as She Runs This Town.

We’ve created a list of upcoming races in the Greenville area, some of which were tipped off to us by our awesome Kidding Around Greenville readers.

Upcoming Virtual Races

Virtual races serve multiple purposes. They address the problem of physical distancing while also giving runners the sense of accomplishment that only comes from running a race. For those who are new to running, a virtual race can also be a less intimidating option than the nervous energy of a crowded starting line. And if you’re not a runner? Just walk! It also gives runners a lot of flexibility in that they choose when and where to run their race. (And, hey, push a stroller or bring Fido if you need to!)

Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Carolinas Laces for Love Virtual 5K
March 2 – 6, 2022
Registration is $30. This race helps raise funds for Ronald McDonald House, which houses families who travel far from their home for a child’s medical care. One registration fee of $30 covers the cost of a single night of a family’s stay at Ronald McDonald House.

Run with the Lions
5K, 10K, 1 Mile Fun Run
May 15 – June 1, 2022
Registration for each of these virtual runs is just over $6. These runs are fundraisers for the Greer Centennial Lions Club, which works to provide eye care and address other community needs like hunger relief.

Upcoming In-Person Races Near Greenville, SC

Greenville Half Marathon & 5K
5K, Half Marathon
February 26, 2022
Each of these races start at different spots along the Swamp Rabbit Trail and then follow it to a finish in downtown Greenville. The 5K starts at the Swamp Rabbit Cafe and the half marathon begins across the main road from Travelers Rest High School.

Dubbed the “fastest half marathon in the south” this half marathon is all downhill! While there is no kids’ race this year, we’d be remiss to exclude this popular event from our list. They are expecting 1,000 5K participants and 2,000 for the half marathon. Registration for the half is $100-110 depending on when you register and $40-45 for the 5K.

Race for the Green
Kids Fun Run, 5K, Half Marathon
March 12, 2022
Seneca, SC

Registration is free for the Kids Fun Run, $25 for the 5K, and $50 for the half marathon. This race will have you zooming through the streets of Seneca, which is about an hour from Greenville. Don’t forget to rock your best green running gear!

Chase the Rainbow 5K
5K Run and Walk
March 13, 2022
Brewery 85, 6 Whitlee Court, Greenville

Gear up in your luckiest green garb for this race that begins and ends at Brewery 85. Registration is $15 for the 5K.

A Hero’s 5K Benefit Concert & Race
5K, Kids Fun Run
March 26, 2022
Greer City Hall, 301 East Poinsett Street, Greer

Take to the streets of downtown Greer for this race that benefits A Hero’s 5K. This nonprofit raises funds for organizations that support military veterans. The 5K is $30 in advance and $40 on the day of the race. The Kids Fun Run is FREE.

10th Annual Race for Grace 5K
April 2, 2022
Carolina High School, 2725 Anderson Road, Greenville

The Race for Grace supports Carolina High School’s Grace Fund, which helps members of the Carolina High School community who find themselves in times of crisis. The course is multi-surface and winds through the school’s campus. Runners and walkers are welcome! Registration is $10.

Running of the Goats 5K and Nature Walk
April 24, 2022
WNC Nature Center, 75 Gashes Creek Road, Asheville

The 5K starts and ends at the WNC Nature Center and the goats will be cheering you on, which we think is really the best reason to sign up for this race. Registration is $35-$45 depending on when you register. You can also do the race virtually.

PB&J Kids Fun Run
.25 miles., .5 miles, 1 mile
June 3, 2022

Registration for these fun runs is a donation of a jar of peanut butter and of jelly. These are then used by North Greenville Crisis Ministry, which provides prepared meals to children during the summer months. PB&J drop-off is between May 1 – June 4 at Travelers Rest’s George I. Theisen Family YMCA or you can bring your jars to the race event.

Red White & Brew 5K
July 1, 2022
Brewery 85, 6 Whitlee Court, Greenville

Put on your most patriotic paraphernalia for this race that begins and ends at Brewery 85. Registration is $15.


For other races – some stroller friendly and others not – see this list of races within 25 miles of Greenville over the year.

Are you participating in a race in the upcoming months or did we miss your favorite run? Tell us in the comments!

About the Author
Kristina Hernandez is a mom of two girls, freelance writer and photographer. Originally from New Jersey, she is in love with the Upstate and could not imagine raising her kids anywhere else. She enjoys hiking to waterfalls, kayaking, camping, cooking, and exploring all that Greenville has to offer. And she really loves baby goats. Follow her on Instagram at @scadventurer.

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7 years ago

Is there an updated version of this for 2016?

7 years ago
Reply to  Gabi

There will be. We are working on it.

Colleen Barnes
7 years ago

What about the Reedy River Run? April 23rd


7 years ago
Reply to  Colleen Barnes

We definitely should expand this list. Thanks for the suggestion, Colleen.

3 years ago