Everything I Love About the Peachtree Road Race… And Why it Should be a Part of Your 4th of July!

If you’ve lived in Atlanta for any period of time, you know this town is full of rich history and traditions. But, there is absolutely nothing quite like the Peachtree Road Race. I’ve been running this race for the past eight years {with a few pregnancy breaks…}. Each time, I love it more. If you’ve never experienced the Peachtree, here’s what makes it so special and why you really should dive in – whether participating, volunteering or spectating!

First of all, it’s more than just a race.

Yes, the Peachtree Road Race is a 10K – in fact, it’s the largest 10K in the world with a whopping 60,000 participants. Yes, that’s a 6.2 mile course full of hills and Atlanta heat. But, it really is so much more. And, you don’t have to be a “runner” to get excited about this race.

The race itself is full of athletes and non-athletes alike, complete with a Wheelchair Division (more on that in a moment…) and just as many people walking the course as those running. And, that doesn’t account for the 3,500-plus event volunteers or the 150,000 festive spectators who line Peachtree Road to cheer on participants. It’s the unique blend of people, gathering together on this special day, that makes this race so different from your average running event.

The Peachtree Road Race brings out the very best in us.

As a runner, I’ve always felt that race environments – from “fun runs” to half-marathons – are some of the most inclusive and encouraging that I’ve ever encountered. There’s a good reason for this. When people come out to a race, they are there to have fun, support a special cause, and/or finally reach a goal after a period of hard work and training. And, when people bring motivating factors like that to the table, you can’t help but feel the positivity in the air.

On this day, it’s the men and women of the Wheelchair Division who kick off the festivities. As the first to take on the course, these athletes set the tone for the entire event – epitomizing what perseverance and strength look like in the best of us. And, in that same spirit, thousands of others follow their lead and bring to the street their own stories and accomplishments. Whether it’s a family walking together in memory of a loved one, or the 50-year-old woman who’s trained for months to take on the first 6.2 mile run of her life, this stretch of Peachtree Road is sacred real estate for so many because of what it symbolizes for them. And, there is nothing like being in the middle of that.

Oh, and it’s the 4th of July!

The Peachtree Road race is that childhood 4th of July parade you loved…on steroids. Every inch of the 6-mile course is filled with red, white and blue (in the form of everything from tu-tu’s to full-fledged body paint), music, cheering, signs and FUN. There are friends running together, families cheering from the sidelines and strangers patting each other on the back. And, best of all – they are all celebrating America and what it means to them. On this morning, it’s not about anyone’s political persuasion, ethnicity or belief system – it’s simply about unity. And, in a season that’s often filled with partisanship, life on Peachtree Road really does look like “one nation indivisible” on 4th of July morning.

If you’re not signed up to participate in the Peachtree Road Race this year, why don’t you consider coming out to cheer on 60,000 of your fellow Atlantans? Or, better yet, how about volunteering or grabbing a race number of your own next year! I promise, you won’t regret it – and if you do jump in, it will become a 4th of July tradition for your family, just as it has for mine.

And, don’t forget to check out Atlanta Mom’s Blog’s Instragram site (@atlmomsblog) on July 4th morning as we take over the Peachtree Road Race and bring all of the sights and sounds of the race to you!

For more on the Peachtree Road Race, visit the Atlanta Track Club’s website at https://www.atlantatrackclub.org. (Or, click here for more information about the statistics used in this post!)


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