The Fifth Annual Middlebury Maple Run - The Sweetest Half
The fifth annual Middlebury Maple Run Half Marathon and 2-person Relay will run in Middlebury, Vermont on May 5, 2013. It's the "Sweetest Half," a must-do event set in historic and beautiful Middlebury. Runners of all paces will enjoy a scenic, certified 13.1 tour along bordering farm pastures and through the village and Middlebury College campus. NOTE: See the full article for info on the new "MadMiddDoubleHalf" combining with the Mad Marathon and Mad Half on July 7, 2013.
Posted Sunday, 24 March, 2013
Middlebury is Vermont at its best, and the Middlebury Maple Run—The Sweetest Half, is just the ticket for an enjoyable half marathon in a stunningly beautiful section of the country, the Lake Champlain Valley. With the Green Mountains to the east and the Adirondacks to the west, and gorgeous rural forests and farms between, this is one lovely course.
Now in its fifth year, this is one race that you must do. Whether running the complete half or participating with a teammate for the two-person relay (7-mile and 6.1-mile legs), this is a memorable, enjoyable race. It continues to grow and every aspect is well planned and well administered. It's directed by runners, and of course they know what runners want. Running in such a beautiful location, it will be a spring highlight for many runners and a first challenge for others.
The two-person relay adds an interesting dimension and opportunities for many more to participate. It is for everyone from the swiftest to the back-of-the-pack runners; it is the same beautiful course for all.
There is a $5.00 discount if you register through this page, so go to the website now and get it done: maplerun.eventbrite.com/discount=cool. Think spring, and sign up now. Be a part of the fifth annual Middlebury Maple Run and enjoy a memorable weekend visit to Middlebury and Addison County, Vermont.
New this year, an innovative combination of two races in Vermont, two months apart, combining total time in competition for special prizes unique to the region and a unique challenge—individually or as a two-person team. The Middlebury Maple Run is first on May 5 as noted, with the Mad Marathon and Mad Half set for July 7, 2013.
Individuals have two categories: The “MadMiddDoubleHalf” is proving to be the most popular so far. But those running the Mad Marathon, the full 26.2, also have their challenge, the “MadMiddHalfFull” which combines the times of the Middlebury Maple Run Half Marathon with the Mad Marathon.
"Man, I can't wait to do the MadMiddDoubleHalf--what a wonderful idea."
Two person Relay teams can also get into the act on the “MadMiddDoubleHalf”, combining both Half Marathons. The only restriction is that they must be the same two team members for both races.
Competition in the “MadMiddDoubleHalf” will be for Individual Females, Individual Males, Relay Females, Relay Males, and Relay Mixed. For the MadMiddHalfFull it will be for individual women and men only. Either way, combined times for both races will be a terrific challenge and a significant accomplishment; a unique entry for your running log for sure. Both are beautiful and well designed and executed races, they just happen to be on different sides of the Green Mountain National Forest—Champlain Valley and Mad River Valley. Wow!
More about Middlebury Maple Run—The Sweetest Half
The Middlebury Maple Run is an excellent race through a vibrant college town with the Green Mountains and Adirondacks as backdrop. Scenic and historic working farmlands complement the run through the famous campus of Middlebury College. (There are good reasons why so many movies and television shows film in Middlebury and environs.) The course passes by farms and pastures with a rural loop to the north, a terrific roll through the unbelievably enthusiastic Middlebury College campus, and a wonderful packed dirt and gravel out-and-back to the south for the last five miles. The start and finish venue, near Porter Medical Center, is ideal and traffic free.
"What a gorgeous course, and what enthusiasm. This is well done!"
The Champlain Valley, with budding spring exploding throughout, is one of the country’s gems. The race organizers are pulling out all the stops to make this another terrific and memorable event, and even making improvements and changes, though the first four went off without a hitch. They listen to runners’ needs, feedback and suggestions.
New and Even Better
Beyond the “MadMiddDoubleHalf” there are a few changes for the Sweetest Half itself-- There will be cash prizes for top finishers: Individual open, individual masters, and teams. And there will also be $100 for new course records.
The 2013 course is certified and will be THE course—the 2009 to 2011 course has been retired. Runners will find the first two miles much easier, with far fewer turns than the original course. There will be 10-year age group prizes through 70+. All finishers get unique medals. Timers will be using the Chronotrack B-tag system (chip built into the disposable bib number), and also using both a start mat and finish line mat for accurate times. The course will be well marked and monitored, including and especially the section through the college campus.
Sign Up Now
Please see the Website at maplerun.eventbrite.com/discount=cool for details on registration, prizes, lodging, packet pickup, course information elevation profile and map, course records, FAQ, medals for all, T-shirts (registration by April 19 and choice of cotton or tech shirts), results, photos, sponsors, charities, contacts, and so much more.
Truly, the Middlebury Maple Run Half Marathon is one of those “must do” spring races in New England. The date is ideal, the organization and amenities top notch, the course is outstanding, and there is something for everyone in Middlebury. It has a 9:00 a.m. start and a two-person relay for those not ready for the full 13.1; the relay handoff is at mile 7 on this USATF-certified and sanctioned course.
Pre-race headquarters will be at the Middlebury Inn (middleburyinn.com) on Court Square for registration and packet pick up. The Middlebury Inn also has special rates for participants and a late checkout option; it has been welcoming guests since 1827, has “modern comfort and classic historic charm”.
Packet pick up and last minute registration will be held at the Inn from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 4, and registration/pick up will also be available race morning at the Middlebury Volunteer Ambulance Association on Collins Drive (near the start and finish) 7:30 a.m. to 8:45. (Complimentary bag check will be available in the registration area.) Registration rates are very reasonable and include an affordable “student rate” that won’t increase as race day nears.
There is a lot to like about this event, including the maple-themed age group awards (ten-year increments) and outstanding post-race food, provided by local pub Two Brothers Tavern, and post-race party with live music by local band The Horse Traders.
One of the course's highlights is the extraordinary enthusiasm generated by the students, always out in force and really energizing after a quiet tour north of town; what a setting.
Middlebury College, founded in 1800, is the halfway mark of the race, and the relay hand off is there at mile 7 (only a 10-minute walk from the start), adding to the excitement. Middlebury College is one of the finest liberal arts colleges in the USA, and is one of the town’s great resources and “industries” with historic buildings nestled in the middle of town. It offers 850 courses in 44 different majors. Middlebury competes with 31 NCAA athletic teams; and those teams have produced 29 national championships since 1995.
Lying between the Green Mountains and Lake Champlain, this course is beautiful and very rewarding in itself!
The Porter Medical Center is on the south edge of the village on South Street at the intersection of Collins Drive, so the first section starts heading north towards town. Runners go past the historic and newly restored Pulp Mill Covered Bridge, which crosses Otter Creek. The northern loop winds through quiet farm-bordered roads, past UVM's famed Morgan Horse Farm, with fields and pastures and beautiful views of the mountains as you stride along on several miles of unpaved roads. The course is very spectator-friendly, as runners return through town via the college campus only a few blocks from the early miles. And at 8 miles it passes directly in front of the Porter Medical Center and the start.
The starting line is in front of Porter Medical Center on a wide, straight roadway. At the horn runners will head north on South Street to Weybridge Street and onto Pulp Mill Bridge Road. The speediest runners will appreciate that there are only three turns in the first two miles of the race. The historic covered bridge is at the two-mile mark and runners will then head into the town of Weybridge on Morgan Horse Farm Road–a beautiful loop turning west on Hamilton Road just before mile four. The loop then heads south or left on Sheep Farm Road back toward Middlebury via Weybridge Street, Freeman Way and Old Chapel Road into Middlebury College.
The course runs through campus, rejoins South Street and heads south of town on a hard-packed dirt out-and-back section on South Street Extension, with the turnaround at 10.5 miles. This section is quiet and peaceful, with enough roll to be invigorating. Note, the first mile and the five-mile out-back will be closed to traffic, except emergencies and local residents.
The course is half on paved roads and half on rural hard-packed dirt roads. About four miles of the course run near downtown Middlebury and the other nine run on mostly unpaved roads on the northern loop and southern out and back. This intriguing route runs past the famous University of Vermont Morgan Horse Farm, a National Historic Site. The farm's distinctive white barn is at 3.3 miles, but the course runs along its pastures for miles. There are just enough rolling hills and grades to provide gorgeous views of the Adirondack Mountains and Green Mountains. Hills are small and climbs short, with scenic views throughout.
The last few miles return north to the medical center and the triumphant finish in the parking area via Collins Drive. Then it will be time to party. The post-race party will be really special, with food, beverages, and live music! Friends and family may attend with additional tickets—see the race website.
Middlebury and Addison County--Pure Vermont
Picture-postcard Middlebury is the shire town (county seat) of Addison County, located in the lower Champlain Valley. It is midway between Burlington and Rutland, and got its name because it is midway between New Haven and Salisbury.
This region became a rich source of farm products and manufacturing using water power from the falls--and continues to be Vermont's highest producing agricultural county. The village grew up around the early mills. That character is still distinctively visible with the tumbling falls of Otter Creek running through the center of downtown. The famous Henry Sheldon Museum of Vermont is in Middlebury and is well worth a look. The UVM Morgan Horse Farm is also very interesting and the Covered Bridge and Maple Landmark Woodcraft (handcrafted gifts and toys of wood) are great for a tour.
And if you like to sample local beverages, stop by Otter Creek Brewing, Drop-In Brewing Company, or Lincoln Peak Vineyard. You can choose from a variety of recreational activities, arts, historical sites, entertainment, and shopping, lodging and dining choices.
Addison County offers something for everyone—every season of the year; and is especially vibrant and alive in the spring sugaring season. The “Sweetest Half” runs at the end of the maple sugaring season.
The region includes quaint villages and thriving towns. There are many working farms, including dairy and horse farms. It is picturesque and welcoming place to run.
Just Run and Savor the Experience
This race shows the best of Vermont in maple sugaring season, so don’t miss the fifth annual Sweetest Half--a great course, historic location, friendly, welcoming community, two-person relay, and terrific organization. Run this half marathon along the Champlain Valley, beginning and ending in historic Middlebury. You will love running this course at this wonderful time of year.
Check the Website and sign up at maplerun.eventbrite.com/discount=cool. And for a real "flavor" of the Maple Run and Middlebury check out the YouTube video at www.youtube.com/watch?v=5EMqxX6HUOw.
Also, for further information you may send inquiries directly to email@example.com or call 802-388-7951 ext. 2.