11 Chicago-Area Races to Run in June

Running season is in full swing, and the local races keep on coming.

In June, runners can participate in everything from 5K fun runs to half marathons and overnight relay races. Whether you’re training for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon or simply enjoying the warm outdoors, there’s a race to satisfy everyone in June.

June 1

North Shore Half Marathon: This 13.1-mile course takes runners through neighborhoods in the north suburbs, including the historic Fort Sheridan. The race begins and ends in downtown Highland Park. Runners will also contribute to charity when registering. For every person who registers for the half marathon, RAM Racing will donate $5 to Misericordia Heart of Mercy.

United Run for the Zoo: Join the running herd in a 5K or 10K race through the Lincoln Park Zoo. The course takes runners through the zoo and along the lakefront path before ending at the Kovler Lion House.

June 5

Totally Awesome 80’s 5k: Celebrate Throwback Thursday with an 80’s-themed 5K in Grant Park. The post-race party features a DJ mixing 80’s tunes, and runners are encouraged to wear their best 80’s attire -- leg warmers, tube socks and all.

June 6

Ragnar Relay Chicago: This overnight relay race sounds more intense than it actually is. It’s meant to be more of a fun run for dedicated runners with at least 11 runner friends. The race begins in Madison, Wis., and ends in Chicago. Each team member runs three times with each leg somewhere between three and eight miles. By the time your team reaches downtown Chicago, you will have run approximately 200 miles together.

June 7

Run Home Chicago: Join a fundraising team in a 5K run/walk to help end homelessness in Chicago. Run Home Chicago is organized by the Primo Center for Women and Children, an organization that addresses housing needs in the Chicago area.

Bacon Chase: Run the 5K or the 0.05K in a race that’s all about bringing home the bacon. No matter which race you choose, the prizes are the same -- unlimited bacon at the finish line, bacon bits along the course, a free Bloody Mary and a bacon-scented race bib.

Energizer Night Race: Give the gift of light in this unique global night race series. Chicago is the only U.S. city to take part in th race this year, but cities across the globe are taking turns hosting it. In honor of the race, Energizer Battery Company is donating 14 million hours of solar light to communities without electricity around the world. Runners receive LED headlights to wear while they run to support the mission and light the path.

June 14

Trot Against Trafficking: Head to Park Ridge to run a 5K and support organizations working to end human trafficking. All proceeds of the race go to Room to Read, an organization that promotes literacy and gender equality in education in developing countries, and Girls Education and Mentoring Services (G.E.M.S.), an organization dedicated to empowering girls and young women who have experienced sexual exploitation in the human trafficking system.

June 21

PAWS Chicago Run for Their Lives: Bring your pup and embark on an 8K run or a 4K walk to support PAWS Chicago, a no-kill animal shelter. Participants can fundraise at least $86 or pay an $86 registration fee to pay for one animal at PAWS to be spayed or neutered. Participants and their pets can enjoy food, snacks, a doggie buffet and adult beverages after the race.

June 26

Disco Dash: Get your groove thing on at the Disco Dash in a 5K or 10K race followed by a groovy after party. Disco tribute band The Shagadelics will perform at the post-race party. Costumes are encouraged, and cash prizes will be awarded to the funkiest male and female runners.

June 28

Proud To Run: Join the Pride Week festivities at the Proud To Run 10K or 5K races along Chicago’s lakefront. Money raised from the event supports local LGBT organizations, including the youth theater group About Face Theatre, The Night Ministry and LGBT running group Frontrunner/Frontwalkers Chicago.

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