GREATER SPRINGFIELD – An out-and-back loop course that takes runners along the rolling country roads in the small town of Whately, awaits at the Western Massachusetts Mother's Day Half Marathon, which makes its third annual running along the banks of the Connecticut River on the morning of Mother's Day 2013.
Planned as a benefit for the Cancer Connection, a Northampton-based nonprofit organization that provides support and programs for both adults and children coping with cancer, the race starts and finishes near the Police and Fire station on Christian Lane in Whately, a small Pioneer Valley town of less than 2,000 residents whose history dates all the way back to the 1670s.
From the starting line area, runners follow a counter-clockwise loop along Christian Road, Chestnut Plain Road and Depot Road before turning onto Cronin Hill Road, King Street and Main Street, as the course brings runners south from Whately into the nearby small town of North Hatley.
After the nearly 4.5-mile stretch along Main Street – which becomes River Road as it nears the banks of the Connecticut River – runners then turn left onto Christian Lane, and head back in to the finish line at the Police and Fire station. Approximately 220 runners crossed the finish line in 2012.
The race starting time is 8 a.m., and while most of the course is fast and flat, organizers say, the first two miles feature the hilliest stretch of the course as runners make their way along Christian Lane and Chestnut Plain Road. After about the three-mile marker, the course then flattens out and remains largely flat for the remainder of the 13.1-mile route, which is also a USATF-sanctioned course.
To reserve a spot in the 2013 running of Whately's Western Massachusetts Mother's Day Half Marathon, register online at imATHLETE.com
. For more information, visit www.racewmass.com