Urban Bourbon Half Marathon

Urban Bourbon Half Marathon

( 35 reviews )
97% of reviewers recommend this race
  • Louisville,
    United States
  • October
  • 13.1/Half Marathon
  • Road Race

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The Urban Bourbon Half Marathon presented by Jim Beam® is an exciting, one-of-a-kind marathon featuring the beautiful scenery and bourbon for which Kentucky is famous. Starting and finishing in downtown Louisville, race participants will experience a scenic course through the fall foliage in Cherokee Park and past numerous downtown landmarks. After crossing the Finish Line, all participants receive free entry into the best post-race party around. The post-race Urban Bourbon Bash provides participants with free bourbon tastings, beer, pizza and Kentucky burgoo, all while being serenaded by local live music. Join us in Louisville for this amazing half marathon!

Erica Haynes

McKinney, Texas, United States
42 29
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Race Management
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Erica Haynes's thoughts:

Packet Pickup/Expo: We did the VIP packet pick up and it was beyond worth it. It held at the Evan William Bourbon Experience in their basement Speakeasy. I know it just sounds awesome. With the private packet pick up there weren’t any lines and it was quick and easy, we gave our names, got our wristbands and were able to verify our shirt sizes and were given the option to switch sizes if needed. Fortunately mine fit perfectly and I love having a dri-fit long sleeve, you don’t get those very often in Texas. In addition the shirt and bib we got a water bottle and drawstring bag. After retrieving our goodies we were quickly invited to have some traditional bourbon cocktails and appetizers. It was freaking delicious.

Race Day:
We didn't drive to the race start, but I didn't notice any traffic backups like you normally get with races of this size. Gear check was a breeze and there were plenty of volunteers who were easy to spot for last minute questions. I’ve never seen volunteers who are there solely for answering questions. From what I was told by another Pro the potty lines were quite long, but I didn’t have to go so I can’t really verify this information. Despite having 3000 runners it was not a corralled start, it was self seeding and everyone seemed to be pretty courteous of others and let people by as needed, but it did get to the point to where there simply wasn’t any room. But, even starting at the back I was across the start within three minutes and with no problems.

Course: Just gorgeous. It was mostly asphalt and it took awhile to get adjusted to it since it was uneven at some parts and I’m used to paved concrete roads. Now, being a Texas girl, I loved seeing the fall foliage and it just felt like fall. Yes, it was rainy and humid but there’s nothing anyone can do about that. I was just happily cruising along until the hills. Yup. The first one was steep and full of curves, and took a chunk of my energy. But what goes up must come down, three times to be exact. However, the course scenery made everything much easier to handle. The water stations were properly spaced and well stocked. I wish the PowerAde would’ve been on a different side or different cup, but they were vocal about what was what. One thing I did notice was the lack of on course photographers. I would’ve enjoyed seeing pictures of myself with the fall leaves to remember this race, but oh well.

Post Race: Once you got your medal you were quickly greeted with small water bottles, and heat sheets. Once you turned the corner there was a table stocked with PowerAde, bagels, bananas, etc. and it was placed so that there could be two lines. The post race party was legit. I’ve ran several big name races such as Dallas Marathon and Rock N Roll events and I’ve never had such a great time at a post race party. There was beer, bourbon samples, donuts for sell, a band, pizza, burgoo and just great people. There was plenty of seating (especially when the rain started) and while the lines were long they seemed to move pretty quickly. There was also the Urban Bourbon Walk as part of it in which if you visited different bars around Whiskey Row you were able to collect pins in to add to your medal. Unfortunately we found out at the end of the party that there were only 250 pins per place, and with 3000 runners that doesn’t leave much of an opportunity to get all the pins…especially when the places open before the post race party ends. Basically we got halfway lucky and got 2. Perhaps next year there could be more, or have it start later in the day.

Overall: I would go back to run this race in a heartbeat! For a race that isn’t a name brand race such as Rock n Roll, Hot Chocolate, Divas, etc. it packed the same high quality element for a lot less money, and crowds. I highly recommend this to anyone looking for a scenic course and events before and after the race.

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