Growing up in a small town, Tanya Carrier discovered a talent?and more importantly, a passion?for running at the age of 13. Running helped give her confidence and identity in high school. It helped see her through college, as the only member of her extended family to attend. It taught her discipline, which guided her in qualifying for the Boston Marathon, earning a master's degree in special education, and, ultimately, founding Downtown Runners. As she told Joe Schoenmann of the Las Vegas Sun, she created the organization to share her passion with others and to provide an outlet for people to exercise together.
Tanya knows that Las Vegas already has its fair share of 5Ks, so she planned her inaugural two for the off seasons. Her first race, the Sprinkler Sprint 5K, offsets summer's heat with watery obstacles, such as squirt guns, water cannons, and Slip 'n Slides. Her second 5K takes its inspiration from strip poker, encouraging runners to bundle up against the winter chill with clothes they'd like to donate to charity, losing a layer at predetermined stops along the route. For each item of clothing lost, they get a playing card to use in a poker hand at the end of the race. Winning hands can be used to claim prizes or bluff other racers into believing they haven't even started running yet.
The course itself carries on that fun vibe, too. Winding through city streets and local parks, the 5K route is dotted with hydration stations that dole out hot chocolate. Holiday music, a giant Santa inflatable, and snow blowers help to set
At the Mustache Dache, mustaches aren't just for guys—on-site face painters can adorn women and children with anything from a bushy handlebar to a dainty pencil stache. Once everyone is mustachioed, they're ready for the 5K, just one of many November races put on to benefit Movember, a global men's health charity that fights prostate and testicular cancer. After the race, runners and their supports can attempt to win first prize in the mustache contest by taping caterpillars to their lip.
Halloween is a time for the zombies, ghouls, and werewolves of the world to shed their everyday human disguises and proudly walk hand in hand with their living counterparts. The Las Vegas Halloween Weekend Urban Obstacle Run honors this ghastly evening with a slew of spine-tingling activities. The 5K obstacle course is the main attraction, pitting participants against a variety of eerie physical challenges, including abandoned cars, corn fields, and barricades, as a cast of zombies tries to thwart their every move. As a reward for surviving the race without becoming infected, the after-party rolls out live music, food, drinks, prizes, and the occasional Elvis sighting. Those who arrive in Halloween attire are invited to compete in a costume contest, and at 8:30 p.m., Michael Jackson’s "Thriller" will fill the air as visitors line up to break the world record for the most people zombie dancing, which is currently held at 14,000.