Brooklyn Half Marathon 2014 Registration Opens

half marathon training run, Kim Smith, Brooklyn Half Marathon

Kim Smith passes the Cyclone roller coaster on her way to victory at the 2013 Brooklyn Half. (Photo: NYRR)

Mark your calendars. Registration for the 2014 Brooklyn Half Marathon on May 17 opens this Wednesday, January 22 at 12 p.m. EST.

The Brooklyn Half Marathon may not be as famous as the New York City Marathon or NYC Half, but it should be. The event, also put on by New York Road Runners, is a world-class race on the verge of becoming very big, indeed. Mark my words: the day will come when this event is popular enough to have its own lottery. For 2014, NYRR is expecting its biggest field yet.

Once again, I’ll be on the sidelines with NYRR’s “On The Run.” I had a blast working on the 30-minute show about the 2013 Brooklyn Half that aired on ABC in New York:

The Brooklyn Half Marathon has a special place in my heart. It was my very first proper half-marathon in 2010. Insanely enough, I’d already run three marathons, but never a half-marathon. Since 2010, I’ve been to the race every year: either as a runner, cheerleader, or broadcaster. No matter what my role, it’s always a highlight of my year.

Brooklyn Half Marathon, On The Run

Near the start in front of the Brooklyn Museum. (Photo nyrr_ontherun Instagram)

It’s also safe to say that it’s my husband’s favorite race. He’s run it twice and is planning to run it again this year.

The race has changed a lot over the years. In 2010 when I first ran it, there were just 7,015 finishers. Last year, there were 21,427. And for 2014, they’re expecting their biggest field ever.

The course has been tweaked a few times too, and each time it just gets better.

Now, the Brooklyn Half starts outside the Brooklyn Museum and takes runners on a tour of the southern half of the borough. Runners see Grand Army Plaza, Prospect Park and finish on the boardwalk in Coney Island. In warmer years, you’ll find many a runner splashing around in the ocean while running teams have parties on the beach. Nathan’s Famous hot dogs is open for business early in the morning to serve runners and the Coney Island Cyclone roller coaster runs all day long.

On The Run, Brooklyn Half Marathon

At the Brooklyn Half Pre-Party
(Photo: nyrr_ontherun Instagram)

But perhaps may favorite part of the event happens before the race even begins: the Pre-Party presented by New Balance, featuring Brooklyn bands, food and beer, which takes the place of a traditional race expo. The Pre-Party debuted to rave reviews last year.

Between the Pre-Party, the borough and the race itself, I feel safe saying the Brooklyn Half is worthy of destination race status. This year, NYRR is even putting together an elite field for the event and a program called Run the City, which gives runners and their families discounts at restaurants, bars and businesses all over Brooklyn.

Plus, it’s got a great medal and your choice of men’s orwomen’s cut tech shirts by New Balance. I love a race with women’s cut shirts.

If you didn’t get into the NYC Half but still want to race a big half-marathon in New York this spring, the Brooklyn Half Marathon should be it.

On The Run, Brooklyn Half

The Brooklyn Half medals (Photo: nyrr_ontherun Instagram)

Yes, I freelance as host of “On The Run” for NYRR, but they never ask me to write about or plug events. I’m doing this all on my own. I love the event so much that I want people outside of the New York metro area to know about it. It’s flown under the radar for so long.

No more. I’m serious, I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s as hard to get into as the NYC Half in a few years. So take advantage and run it now.

Best of all, the race is a steal at $55 for NYRR members and $75 for non-NYRR members. For half-marathons, this is about the best bang-for-your-buck you’ll find anywhere.

The race will sell-out. So mark your calendars and register early. I’ll see you out there!

On The Run, Brooklyn Half Marathon

The finish. (Photo:

Karla Bruning


Karla Bruning is a race announcer at the TCS New York City Marathon + other major events, TV host for the New York City Triathlon + contributor to Shape, Redbook, Runner's World + other publications. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now it's her job. She's run 8 marathons, 30 halves, 10 triathlons + open water swims. When she's not running, talking about running or writing about running, she's snuggling her baby, spoiling her dog + compulsively traveling.


01 2014

15 Comments Add Yours ↓

The upper is the most recent comment

  1. 1

    I keep debating this race…I guess I need to decide soon! Really hoping for a spring half marathon PR!
    Danielle recently posted..Dopey Challenge: The Full MarathonMy Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      This could be a PR course. The 3.5 miles through Prospect Park are hilly, but Mile 7 to the finish is pancake flat and even a little downhill. I know a lot of people who have PR’d in Brooklyn. It’s not flat start to finish, but it’s not all hills like a 2-loop course in Central Park.
      Karla Bruning recently posted..Brooklyn Half Marathon 2014 Registration OpensMy Profile

    • 3

      You could totally PR this. the second half is straight and flat and despite being a pretty big crowd, last year’s wasn’t really crowded.
      Nicole @ Pink Elephant on Parade recently posted..SlackerMy Profile

  2. 4

    Thanks for this post! I am SO tempted. So tempted. I will think for a day or so, then may just go for it!
    Cindy @ Kicking it In recently posted..Don’t look around, look within: Six tips for motivation that moves you.My Profile

  3. 6

    Aaaand, as an added bonus, you can do the Superhero 1/2 on Sunday in NJ and make it a double header of awesomeness… I liked the Brooklyn 1/2 last year, the worst part, though, was that after the race I couldn’t get cell phone reception anywhere and that made finding my ride home that much harder.
    Nicole @ Pink Elephant on Parade recently posted..SlackerMy Profile

  4. 10

    Soooo tempting!! Especially finishing on Coney Island boardwalk!! How cool would that be? I’m definitely adding this race to my wish list of races.
    Emily recently posted..Wish I Was Wednesday #54My Profile

  5. 12

    Doug and I are all signed up! So excited to do this one! It’s Doug’s first half, so we’ll see if I’m able to create an addict with me lol. I’m hoping to be able to PR it since Doug is faster than me (damn him and his natural athletic ability!). Hopefully I’ll get to see you there! :)
    Kellie recently posted..Hi, My Name is Kellie…My Profile

    • Karla Bruning

      Awesome! So great that Doug is doing it with you! Is he going to run with you? It’s nice to have a pacer for a PR. This course is MUCH easier than the 2-looper you did in Central Park, so you’ll be in PR territory for sure. And I’m in the same boat–Phil is SO much faster than me. I introduced HIM to running and yet he’s the one who is fast enough to qualify for Boston!
      Karla Bruning recently posted..Disneyland Half Marathon 2014 Registration OpensMy Profile

  6. 14

    I remember when you did an On the Run for this last year and it looked so fun! It’s sold out already (can’t believe how quickly!) but I will definitely have this on my radar for next year.

    • Karla Bruning

      Some of these races sell-out so fast! That’s why I like to do reminder posts like this one for the super popular races that I know sell out. Give my readers a leg-up on registering! I’ve definitely had that race that I wanted to do and then we found out too late that registration opened and already sold out. Wah wah. No more. I’m on top of it!
      Karla Bruning recently posted..Disneyland Half Marathon 2014 Registration OpensMy Profile


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