On Sunday, December 17th the Old Town in Niagara-on-the-Lake will be alive with the festive Christmas spirit. More than 500 runners dressed up as Santa Claus will be dashing through Simcoe Park and along the beautiful Niagara River Parkway for VRPro’s 3rd annual Santa and Elf Run in Niagara-on-the-Lake.
VRPro Race Director Kelly Arnott is encouraging people to participate. She says, “It’s a beautiful route, especially for people who just want to come out and walk the route. They can walk it in an hour. It’s a fun, festive way to spend the day.”
Get fit and have some fun
The Santa and Elf Run blends the spirit of fun and fitness with the magic of the holiday season. Runners and walkers of all skills can participate. The run is sponsored by Niagara-on-the-Lake Realty in partnership with Travis Cairns, Desjardins Insurance. Arnott says, “What makes this run so enchanting is its emphasis on community and camaraderie. Following the run, the Santas and their families are invited to visit the shops and restaurants in Niagara-on-the-Lake to do a bit of holiday shopping.”
The run is being hosted at the Irish Harp Pub at 245 King Street in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Both the 1K and 5K start in Simcoe Park. The 5K is an out-and-back style course that starts and ends at Simcoe Park. Kids ages 12 and under in the 1K will receive an elf hat and are encouraged to show up in their best elf or holiday-themed clothing.
Race start times:
- 1K starts at 9:15am
- 5K starts at 10:00am
The Irish Harp Pub will be a hub of celebration following the run. Participants can enjoy coffee, hot chocolate, and timbits courtesy of Tim Hortons while the Irish Harp Pub is providing breakfast sandwiches. This is also the location where the awards are being handed out.
Each 5K runner will receive a keepsake finishers medal, that is a tiny Christmas present which opens to reveal Santa Claus. Those who place in their age category will receive a special trophy. Participants in the 1K run will receive a medal shaped like a cup that features Santa. Those who participate in both the Hamilton and Niagara-on-the-Lake Santa Races will also receive the Santa cup medal.
Giving back to the community
This year’s Santa and Elf Run will be supporting the Niagara-on-the-Lake Youth Collective. The NOTL Youth Collective is a program dedicated to creating a safe, accessible, and welcoming space for youth between the ages of 12 and 18.
Five dollars from each entry is being donated to the NOTL Youth Collective and donations can also be made directly to the race website at www.vrpro.ca The fundraiser is in partnership with Niagara-on-the-Lake Realty.
Preparing for race day
Race kit pickup is at the Irish Harp Pub at 245 King Street in Niagara-on-the-Lake.
- Saturday, December 16th between 10:30am and 3:00pm
- Sunday, December 17th (Race Day) between 8:00am and 9:00am
Kelly Arnott reminds runners that the race kit includes a beautiful velour Santa suit that can be worn at future races. Discounts are available for seniors and children under the age of 16. If you participate in two Santa Races, you receive free entry to a 5K race in the future. The overall male winner and overall female winner will receive a free pair of running shoes courtesy of Altra.
Runners come to the Santa and Elf Run in Niagara-on-the-Lake from across the Golden Horseshoe and even from upstate New York. Last year they had more than a dozen people from Woodstock join them. Everyone had a lot of fun.The Santa and Elf Run embraces the holiday spirit creating an unforgettable experience that celebrates the season.
For registration and race day details visit: www.vrpro.ca