Friday Five: 5 Events to Jump-Start Summer

By: Brighid Klick

Summer is almost here! Time to get outside, soak up that Vitamin D, and enter a race or two! From the usual biking and running to the not-so-usual trail racing, triathlons, and adventure racing, we offer you a selection of June events to help get your summer off on the right foot. We went for variety this Friday, so for more events in each of these categories, check out the calendar on our website!

1. Harbor Springs Cycling Classic: June 1, Harbor Springs

For a laid-back bike ride through beautiful northern Michigan this June, sign up for the Cycling Classic in Harbor Springs. Three different routes are offered–riders can choose from a 20 mile, 44 mile, or 62 mile route–yet all take riders along M-119, also known as Lake Shore Drive or the “Tunnel of Trees.” Along the way there are refreshment stops and included in the registration fee is a lunch in the courtyard at the Birchwood Inn.

Event Website

2.Mackinac Island Lilac Festival 10K Run/Walk: June 8, Mackinac Island

Take in the best that Mackinac Island has to offer in the late spring with a run or walk around the entire island! The race goes through downtown, continues on through the center of the Island, and ends near the Straits of Mackinac. The race is held on the second day of the annual Lilac Festival, so after you cross the finish line, visit one of the many festival events happening around the Island!

Event Website

3. Flirt With Dirt 5K & 10K Trail Run: June 8, Novi

Race along Lakeshore Park’s single track mountain bike dirt trails in just a pair of running shoes for a fun and dirty experience–finish line is at the top of a sledding hill, so rein in the urge to sprint early and save it for the end! Opt for this race for a change of pace from the typical road races and dart around trees, rocks, and mud puddles for a fun 5-or 10-K.


4. The Blast: June 15, Orion Township

A great event for those new to adventure racing and experienced racers, The Blast is an adventure race that includes 12-18 miles of biking on roads and trails along with paddling 3-6 miles. Additionally, you can participate in the orienteering sections of the race which covers 4-8 miles on foot. Final race details are not provided until the day of the race, so spruce up those navigating skills and build a base in all of these disciplines–expect the unexpected!

Event Website

5.  FirstTry Triathlon: June 22, Linden

About a half hour south of Flint, the FirstTry Triathlon takes participants through a 300 yard swim, a 9.1 mile bike loop, and a 2 mile run during their first triathlon. The event is designed with first timers in mind, so the course is relatively easy and offers new triathletes the opportunity to experience a triathlon without the intimidation factor of other triathlons. For experienced triathletes, or FirstTry alumni, the same distances are offered in the FastTry Triathlon held on the same day–with short distances, it allows participants to work on speed and try out a competitive triathlon. All ages are welcome, so why not bring along some friends and family and try out a triathlon together?

Event Website

There’s our five! We hope we selected events that have gotten you pumped to get outside this June, and maybe even introduce you to a new sport. There is one more event, we haven’t forgotten: anyone running an event at the Ann Arbor Marathon this year? Perhaps we’ll see you there!

Featured image courtesy of link (image of Tunnel of Trees, Harbor Springs)

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