Run the Bluegrass at Keeneland
Before the Horses Race, the Runners Race
Before April’s racing season kicks off at Keeneland, the area’s annual half marathon – Run the Bluegrass – is held at the end of March. This year’s race is held on Easter Eve: Saturday, March 31, 2018. “America’s Prettiest Half Marathon” is most definitely an earned superlative. Beginning and ending on Keeneland grounds, this is one beautiful, scenic jaunt through majestic horse farms.
“America’s Prettiest Half Marathon”
If you have never run this course before, consider it now before it sells out. You will enjoy crowd support from gorgeous horses trotting next to you along fence lines. You will lose yourself in the serenity of Lexington’s countryside. Although the course doesn’t feature massive summits to climb, you will experience Kentucky rolling hills for 13.1 miles. These hills are not tall; they’re just constant. Finding a quarter mile stretch of flat land will be a challenge. Don’t let that be daunting, however. What goes up must come down, and your muscles will appreciate the constant change of landscape.
Understand that Run the Bluegrass is not a course where you should expect to set your next personal record. It can be a bit challenging, particularly if you are used to running on flat terrain. Oddly enough, running downhill may feel more difficult than running uphill as you near the end of the race. Then again, just think of how great you will look in all of those downhill running race photographs….
What this course lacks in speed, it compensates for with beauty. Make sure to turn your headphones off for a mile or two to immerse yourself in the scenery. Because this course is a bit off the beaten path, it will lack the fanfare of a more urban route. Breathe the fresh air, bask in the tranquility, and soak up this unique rural route.
Not a Runner? Not a Problem
If running isn’t appealing, Run the Bluegrass is certainly a walker friendly event. Entrants have successfully walked the entire half marathon but can also choose from shorter distances of 7 and 3.65 miles. The first and last few miles of these courses run together. This timing seems to be perfect for participants’ mental stamina. As you’re finishing the last 3 miles, you’re accompanied by a larger crowd! For those used to snapping pictures of their progress, walkers will also get the opportunity to take more photographs along the course.
Other than its sheer beauty, so many factors make this race appealing. The expo held before the race is full of the southern hospitality you’d expect in the Bluegrass. “Southern starts here,” could not be more apt. Vendors are generous with their time to chat, answer questions, and help demo items. Parking at Keeneland is free and ample. This is not a race to which you have to arrive 3 hours early just to take a shuttle to the start line. The abundance of parking also provides no excuse to spectators. Anyone can come cheer on racers. Once the finish line is crossed, take your pick between beer, bourbon, massages, ice cream, and more. We’re pretty sure we even witnessed a marriage proposal in the finish chute of 2017’s race.
If you’re participating in Run the Bluegrass or coming to Keeneland and dropped the ball on accommodation reservations, give one of Lexington Relocation’s fully furnished apartments a whirl. We provide furnished apartments at Beaumont Farms, a property located just 3.5 miles away from Keeneland at 1101 Beaumont Centre Lane, Lexington, KY 40513. To reserve your temporary furnished housing, call Jackie at 859.273.3303 or complete this Housing Request Form. We will then contact you with information on a 1, 2, or 3-bedroom apartment to perfectly fit your needs. We look forward to hearing from you.