For those running live in 2021, here’s what you can expect!
The Belcara Health 5K race has grown in terms of the number of participants each of the past few years and we look for that trend to continue this year. Many RunFest participants start with the 5K one year and increase their race distance the following year.
The Belcara Health 5K will once again start at Light and Pratt Streets in Baltimore’s iconic Inner Harbor. The flat 5K course will show off the scenic view of Charm City’s most famous landmark. 5K runners also enjoy the same amazing home stretch as the other race distances – finishing their run along Pratt Street near McKeldin Square!
5K finishers receive a finisher medal, just like all the other race distance finishers, which makes us one of the only 5K races that honors our runners in this way and we are excited to do so. With our multi-race festival concept and our “City for Everyone. A Race for Everyone.” event slogan, we want every one of our participants to be able to proudly display a medal that they worked hard to earn.
1) No age restrictions for 5K
2) Must complete course by 9:15am (~90 minutes) or course may be shortened
The 5K race will start promptly at 7:30am. Runners are asked to stage themselves along Calvert St. beginning at 7am. Yellow Flags will mark waves 1-5. We ask that you seed yourself in the appropriate wave according to the following expected finish times:
- WAVE 1: Under 30 min.
- WAVE 2: 30 min. to 35 min.
- WAVE 3: 36 min. to 44 min.
- WAVE 4: 45 min. to 59 min
- WAVE 5: 60 min. or Longer
Please do your best to run with the appropriate wave. This will help everyone have the best on-course experience. We will start the waves with a 1-2 minute separation to allow the crowd to spread out. Remember, timing mats will be located at the start & finish lines recording each racers exact time and place
If you’re participating virtually, you have the option to run WHEREVER, WHENEVER! For more information regarding running virtually visit HERE.
OPTION TO RUN VIRTUALLY
When registering, all will have the option to sign up and run virtually. All virtual participants will have the option to upgrade to join the live event until September 1.
All virtual runners will receive their race premium and medal in the mail and be able to submit their times online.
Learn more HERE.
We are going all out for the 20th Anniversary Medal. All runners will receive a special red “steamed crab” with the 20th Anniversary logo inside. And for the first time, all four distances will be able to “crack the crab” with the opening shell!
2021 Race Shirt
Runners participating in the Belcara Health 5K will receive the following:
- Under Armour performance shirt (men’s and women’s styles available), and post-race food & beverage. A medal will be given to all finishers. For an Under Armour Size Chart, click here.
- Collectible finisher medal with unique crab design
- Free race & expo parking in select M&T Bank Stadium lots (other paid lots also available during race weekend)
Additional Amenities include:
- Baggage check near the Baltimore Visitor Center in the Inner Harbor
- Mile Marker sign at each mile
- Dedicated 5K clock at the finish
- Fluid station on the course
- Toilets at start/finish and various points on the course
What Past Participants Have Said
Perfect weather and the Baltimore police at every corner cheering us on along with the spectators and residents on their front porches waving. I saw Baltimore city in a whole new light! Thank you Baltimore
The spectators were AMAZING!!!! Their generosity was awesome! I got bananas, gummy bears, Swedish fish and Natty Bo!!!! I felt better after this marathon than I have at any of my others. I give all of the credit to everyone cheering on the streets for entertaining us. Best race ever!!!
This race had the largest participation of any race I have ever run, and the crowd support was amazing. I loved that the half marathoners and marathoners ran together for the last half, and everyone was encouraging one another along the way. Love! Love! Loved this race.
I have completed 13 Full Baltimore Marathons and would love to keep going for as long as I can. While I am a trail ultra runner, I come back every year for CSE's events b/c you provide runners with a first class experience in a city I love!
Awesome race - the only one I do over & over from year to year. I love the challenging course, crowd support, and superior race organization!
Minor route changes may still occur up until race day.
While we welcome and encourage walkers in our 5K, the 3.1 mile course will close at 9:00am, giving a time limit of approximately 90 minutes. In addition, we will require walkers who are not at the 1 mile marker after 30 minutes to take a shorter route (about 2 miles) to help them attempt to cross the finish line and earn a medal prior to the time limit. This change will allow us the needed time to shift our focus toward other races and address safety concerns with the multiple course routes running along Key Hwy and the Inner Harbor area. 5K runners over the time limit may be permitted to finish, but required move to the sidewalks in order to make way for other race participants.
Charity Groups: The Baltimore Running Festival welcomes charity groups to utilize the event to fund raise and raise awareness of their cause. For more information on charity groups and the requirements involved, visit our Run for a Cause page or email [email protected].
Packet Pick Up
Live participants will be given the option to have their race bibs mailed to them in order to limit travel and personal exposure. All you have to do is cover the postage and handling fees. This option is offered as an add on during registration.
All live runners who do not pay for the mailing option are required to pick up their packets at our one-day Health & Fitness Expo held on Friday prior to race day. The expo is located at the Baltimore Convention Center. For more details, click here.
THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NO RACE DAY PACKET PICK UP. Please plan accordingly.
Runners participating virtually will automatically get their packet mailed to them and WILL NOT be permitted to claim their packet during the expo.
Once we return to a live event in 2021, here is what you can expect:
The event will continue to utilize the best timing technology available. The B-tag technology offers runners a streamlined race experience with timing tags attached to participant bib. This method eliminates the need to scan your chip at the expo or to return the chip following the race, which means no more sitting down to undo your shoe lace just after your run and you no longer have to worry about a charge for a lost chip.
Tips to have your time accurately recorded:
- Race bib is clearly visible on the front of the torso
- Race bib is unaltered and unmodified (do not fold or wrinkle)
- Race bib is pinned in all four corners
- Race bib is not covered (jackets, runner belts, water bottles, etc.)
Virtual runners: The 2021 virtual race will be self-timed. You will have the opportunity to print a race bib and report your finish time into the official race results.
Our wonderful medical partner Medstar Sports Health is there for you, even during your virtual race. Learn more HERE.
Once we return to a live event, MedStar Sports Health will provide medical support on the course and in the finish line area. The MedStar staff will include certified doctors, registered nurses, physician assistants and EMTs and will provide the necessary medical attention to any patient in need. We are grateful to have MedStar Sports Health associated with the event.
THE 2021 BALTIMORE RUNNING FESTIVAL IS A CUPLESS RACE. [Learn More]
RUNNERS ARE REQUIRED TO CARRY THEIR OWN WATER BOTTLE DURING THE RACE AND BRING IT TO THE START LINE FILLED AND READY TO GO.
Gatorade Endurance Formula is available in 34 ounce and 24 ounce sport bottles at major grocery and convenience stores nationwide, and Gatorade Endurance Formula powder is available at specialty athletic stores and at www.gatorade.com/endurance.
Hüma is the Official Race Gel and is available for your virtual run at https://humagel.com/
Gatorade Endurance Formula (Lemon-Lime flavor) will be served at each aid station along the course of this year’s race. Gatorade Endurance Formula is a specialized sports drink that contains approximately twice the amount of sodium (200 mg per 8 ounces) of Gatorade Thirst Quencher, along with chloride, potassium, magnesium and calcium to help sustain hydration by more fully replacing what is lost in sweat. Gatorade Endurance Formula also contains a 6% carbohydrate solution (14 grams per 8 ounces), just like Gatorade Thirst Quencher, which research shows is optimal to help speed fluid back into the body and fuel working muscles. Gatorade Endurance Formula is available in 34 ounce and 24 ounce sport bottles at major grocery and convenience stores nationwide, and Gatorade Endurance Formula powder is available at specialty athletic stores and at www.gatorade.com/endurance. For more information about Gatorade Endurance Formula, please visit www.itsonthecourse.com.
Overall Winners: Trophies will be awarded to the overall male and female champions as well as to the and the second and third place finisher.
Awards Ceremony: The 5K Awards Ceremony will take place at the Main Stage in West Shore Park at 9:00am. Only the Overall Winners will be awarded at the ceremony. Age group awards will be mailed.
Age Groups Prizes: Prizes go to the top three male and female age group finishers for the 5K in each of the following divisions: 16 and under, 17-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, and 70-74, 75+.
Age group awards are mailed in November after race results are declared official.
Disclaimer: We will not ship age group awards internationally
Past Age Group Awards
Age group awards are engraved key chains.