Running in Alabaster

Select Local Merchants

Color Me Rad stages 5K races that transform runners into mobile rainbows by launching cheerful barrages of colored cornstarch. Each color station along the racetrack flings a new, nontoxic pigment at passersby, who wear white shirts to enhance the chromatic onslaught's costuming effects. Brilliant neon-blue, green, purple, and yellow clouds dapple participants along the way, and the race concludes with a prismatic finish-line finale as sprinters chuck colors at each other in celebration. The race's noncompetitive credo shifts the emphasis from speed to silliness, and a portion of its proceeds go to local charities.

Upon registration, each runner collects a Color Me Rad T-shirt, sunglasses, sponsor gifts, and a race bib. Though they don't receive a gift packet, runners younger than 8 years old can sprint for free, provided they have a waiver signed by a guardian and won't give in to demands for gold from confused leprechauns.

100 Ben Chapman Dr
Hoover,
AL
US

Run or Dye is making race running a little more colorful, one major city at a time. This 5K is divided up into four separate courses of varying lengths, each designated by a separate color??which also reflects the color of safe, eco-friendly powered dye the participants get splashed with. At the end of the race, they'll cross into the aptly-named Dye Zone?a polychromatic free-for-all, where fluorescent color is thrown freely from all sides, allowing runners to splash their fellow runners or get colorful revenge on their friends, family members, and any cranky art-history teachers that happen to be walking by.

Unlike some races that rank runners by time, Run or Dye only measures success in color and fun. While the safe-to-eat dyes should wash out of clothing, runners are encouraged to wear things they don't mind getting dirty, preferably in white, gray, or another neutral color to give the dyes maximum visibility.

6030 Barber Motorsports Pkwy.
Birmingham,
AL
US

The University of Alabama at Birmingham's Campus Recreation Center opens its doors to the community, encouraging fit-seekers of all ages to get active. The all-inclusive 150,000-square-foot facility has it all: swimming pools, cardio and weight-training equipment, aerobics studios, and an indoor track. For those who like to mix calorie burning with friendly competition, the site also hosts basketball, racquetball, badminton, and volleyball courts; an indoor soccer and floor hockey field; and even a climbing wall. Kids aren't left out of the fun, either. The center hosts kids' day camps, packed with athletic activities and arts and crafts, and welcomes youths to imitate mountain goats on the rock wall or play racquetball in the supervised Kid Zone.

1501 University Boulevard
Birmingham,
AL
US

When Tracey Passantino's sister became a victim of domestic violence, Passantino was spurred to action?first, of course, to support her sister and nieces, but then to advocate for any families affected by domestic violence. Partnering with women's racecar-driver organization Race4Girls, the organization Race4 Domestic Violence Prevention has raised funds and awareness with events ranging from VIP receptions with pro drivers to an annual 5K

3366 Speedway Boulevard
Talladega,
AL
US

Presented by the Junior League of Montgomery, the 23rd annual Holiday Market's jingle bell call summons a myriad of local merchants and vendors from across the country to set up shop and vend festive holiday presents, home décor, and other seasonal treats. Guests can peruse vibrantly designed wares and women's attire from hue studio inc, or present hard-to-please house elves with an adorable gift from Pamala's Boutique. Feed collegiate rivalries with a copy of the Auburn University Cookbook, penned by Missy Mercer, or feed marital rivalries by picking up The University of Alabama Cookbook, penciled by her husband, Browne Mercer. On Friday, vendors put together a fashion show to highlight trends in seasonal style, and door prizes reward shoppers with magnificent gifts of doorknobs.

201 Tallapoosa Street
Montgomery,
AL
US

"Cheers to your health." That's something often heard at the Breakfast Smoothie Run, but there's no champagne or sparkling chocolate milk here. Instead, race organizers hand each participant a breakfast smoothie. That vitamin-packed beverage serves as a sippable symbol of the three-mile run's larger mission: to promote health and get everyone up and moving. And that means everyone?participants can run or walk at their own pace, and there's a shorter one-mile course for beginners. That means people of all skill levels can participate, compete for prizes, and support a good cause. Each year, the run benefits a charity such as the American Diabetes Association.

3800 Davenport Drive
Montgomery,
AL
US