Wine Run? Here Are 18 U.S. Races For Wine Lovers

wine run, Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

Chef Mickey and Minnie greeted runners at the finish of Disney’s Wine & Dine Half Marathon on Nov. 9, 2013. (Photo: runDisney)

The Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon on November 9, 2013 may be over, but if you like a good wine run, there’s always next year.  Many races around the U.S. cater to grape guzzling runners.

In my column at The Washington Times Communities, I looked at races—from 5ks to marathons—in 11 states and one Canadian province aimed to please the wine connoisseur inside you. Many of them sell-out early, so put them on your calendar for next year.

Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon

November 2014 in Florida

This nighttime half marathon with a 10 p.m. start runs through Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom theme parks before finishing at Epcot, but the real draw is the Finish Line Party at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. Epcot stays open to 4 a.m. for runners, with music, Disney characters, and, of course, food and wine. Friends and family can buy tickets to the party too.

Race swag includes a technical shirt, $10 Disney gift card, a glass of beer, wine or soda, one of runDisney’s iconic finisher medals, and entrance to the Finish Line Party. The weekend also includes a 5K fun run and kids races. www.runDisney.com

Harvest Stompede

wine run, Harvest Stompede

The Harvest Stompede takes runners through vineyards in Michigan’s Leelanau Peninsula. (Photo: lpwines.com)

September 2014 in Michigan

Perhaps the most creatively named, this weekend of races includes a 7-mile run, 5K run and 5K walk through the vineyard rows of Michigan’s Leelanau peninsula.

Following whichever wine run you choose, runners can opt into the Harvest Stompede Wine Tour, a self-guided outing among the 23 Leelanau Peninsula Vintners Association member wineries, pairing local foods with their wines. Tastes range from bratwurst and sauerkraut paired with Riesling to strawberry shortcake paired with Pinot Noir.

Race registration and wine tour tickets are sold separately. www.lpwines.com

Wine Country Half Marathon Series

May to October 2014, North America

Six North American wine regions are the draw at these destinations races tailor-made for grape guzzlers in Virginia, Oregon, Santa Barbara, Calif., Healdsburg, Calif, Napa to Sonoma, Calif., and British Columbia in Canada.

The flagship wine run in the series is the Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon on July 20, 2014. The fast course, with a net elevation drop of 77 feet, takes runners from Carneros to the Sonoma Plaza past acres of grapevines, ranches, and farms. The post-race UnitedHealthcare Wine and Music Festival includes 20 wineries and breweries. Runners take home the Riedel wine glass that comes with their complimentary tasting. Other race swag includes a technical shirt and finisher’s medal. Runners can also purchase tickets to wine tours, a pre-race dinner and a welcome reception at a local vineyard. destinationraces.com

Read more at The Washington Times Communities to find another wine run in California, Oregon, Washington, Texas, Arizona, Rhode Island and elsewhere.

Karla Bruning

About 

Karla Bruning hosts On The Run for New York Road Runners. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now she freelances as a running reporter. She's run 7 marathons, 18 halves, 6 triathlons, sings in an '80s cover band, spoils her dog and travels compulsively.

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  1. 1

    Those sound like my kind of race! By the way, great job on all your work throughout the NYC Marathon! I loved watching all the shows you did.
    Beth @ Miles and Trials recently posted..NYC Whirlwind Weekend Part 2My Profile



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