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The Soaring Wings of Conway Half Marathon is celebrating its 10th anniversary Saturday with the addition of a 10K distance to its festivities.

Both races will start at 7 a.m. at the McGee Center at 3800 College Ave. in Conway. For the sake of being technically correct, the website lists the 10K as starting a quarter mile in front of the center, on College.

Online registration is available until midnight today. The half marathon costs $75 and the 10K is $40. Children younger than 13 who want to do the 13.1-mile race must be accompanied by an adult.

The Race Expo will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at the Conway Regional Health and Fitness Center at 700 Salem Road. Registration and packet pickup will be open at the Expo until the race cap is met: 1500 for the half, 500 for the 10K. A photo ID is required for packet pickup.

There will be no race-day registration.

There also will be some age-divided fun runs for children 12 or younger beginning at 5 p.m. during the Expo. Each costs $10 and each child will receive a finisher's medal.

Race-day packet pickup will be open from 5:30-6:45 a.m. Saturday at the McGee Center.

College Avenue between Reedy Road and Hogan Lane will close to traffic, and access to the McGee Center will only be available off of Prince Street, just east of the Prince and Hogan intersection.

Parking will be at Woodland Heights Baptist Church, 4215 Prince, and at Jim Stone Elementary School at 4255 College Ave.

The half marathon course is USA Track and Field-certified and consists of streets and some paved trail. Aid stations will be about every mile and a half. Course support will end at 10:30 a.m.

Racers will be chip-timed. Awards will go three deep by sex and age group. There is a separate category for walkers. Anyone who registers as a walker must walk the entire course. To quote the website, runners may walk, but walkers may not run.

For those interested in breaking records, the half marathon men's record was set by James Cheruiyot in 2009 at 1:09:44, and the women's record was set by Leah Thorvilson in 2008 at 1:16:49.

All participants in both distances will receive a finisher's medal.

For registration and maps, visit swmarathon.com.

Pedestal Rock and Lick Fork

The Pedestal Rock Road Bike Ride and Lick Fork Gravel Grind will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Witts Springs Community and Conference Center, 196 Arkansas 16 West in Searcy County.

There are four road rides (10, 20, 40 and 62 miles) and three gravel grinds (15, 30 and 62 miles) with various turn-around points in the National Forest.

Online registration is available until 5 p.m. Friday. All rides are $40 each.

Race-day registration and packet pickup will be open from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. at the starting line. Participants are welcome to camp for free Friday night; showers will be available before and after the rides.

Registration includes pre-ride pastries and coffee, a T-shirt, and lunch will be served to all participants after the rides at noon at the community center.

Courses will be marked with signs, but riders are encouraged to view the online course maps to get familiar with their chosen route. All riders must wear a helmet.

There will be rest stops on each course providing at least bananas, pickles and water. Sag (support and gear) vehicles will be on the course.

Proceeds from the rides will benefit Community Voices, a nonprofit that works to showcase the beauty of the Ozarks and strengthen the lives of rural Arkansans living in the Boston Mountains of southwest Searcy County.

The website is pedestalrock40ride.com.

GPP Growler Grinder

The GPP Growler Grinder will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Pedaler's Pub, 410 South West A St. in Bentonville.

Online registration is available until Thursday. Riders will have to choose between two distances: the 50-mile distance costs $65, and the 100-miler costs $75.

Packet pickup will be from noon to 8 p.m. Friday at the Pedaler's Pub. Participants must attend a rider's meeting at either 4 or 6 p.m. during packet pickup. Helmets are required while riding.

Courses will be marked and cue sheets will be provided. The course has lots of rolling hills and passes Civil-War era barns and houses.

All finishers get a 32-ounce growler from Bike Rack Brewing. The Pedaler's Pub will host an after-party with food and entertainment.

Online registration is at gpp.events.

Big Bluff Challenge

The Big Bluff Challenge 5K and 10K will take place at 9 a.m. Saturday at Bull Shoals-White River State Park, 153 Dam Overlook Lane in Bull Shoals.

Online registration closes at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday. The 5K costs $25 and the 10K is $35.

Packet pickup will be from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at Nature's Way Health Food Store, 18 E. Seventh St. in Mountain Home. Packets can also be picked up on race day at the starting line, from 8 to 8:45 a.m.

The course will include the Big Bluff Trail, with the 10K also using some of the Oakridge Mountain Bike Trail. There will be sections of tough singletrack, complete with rocks, roots and hills.

Proceeds go to benefit the North Central Arkansas Master Naturalists.

For those interested in camping, visit arkansasstateparks.com/bullshoalswhiteriver.

For course maps, pirateperryevents.com/big-bluff-challenge.html.

For registration, visit ultrasignup.com and search for "Big Bluff Challenge."

Please send tips for active recreation to

cbyrd@arkansasonline.com

ActiveStyle on 10/16/2017

Print Headline: Soaring Wings of Conway adds 10K to festivities

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