But the season is also full of traditional events, including holiday races such as the 10Kato Memorial Day race, which will again take place on May 27 and the St. Peter Freedom Fun Run on the Fourth of July, as well as town festival races like Janesville’s Hay Daze Fun Run (June 15) and Montgomery’s Kolacky Days Bun Run (July 28).
There are also challenging endurance events such as the New Prague Half Marathon (May 11), the North Mankato Triathlon (June 29-30), the Waseca Triathlon (July 28) and, of course, the Mankato Marathon (Oct. 19-20), which will take place for the fourth year in a row.
A new race this summer is a leg of the Hy-Vee IronKids Series. Announced last week, it will take place on Aug. 3 at Spring Lake Park.
“That’s huge,” Crocker said. “It’s a real testimony to what Mankato has become. It’s no coincidence that the visitors bureau rebranded itself with a bicycle on its logo.”
The race for boys and girls ages 6-15 will be one of two kids triathlons this summer, the other being part of the North Mankato Triathlon. Winners from the IronKids race can advance to the national IronKids over Labor Day weekend at Des Moines, Iowa. A few members of the Green Hornets, Mankato’s kids triathlon team, made it to nationals last year from other regional races.
“Racing is about being fit, but it’s also about spending time with family and friends,” Crocker said.