Run for Your Life in These Halloween 5Ks

October 25th, 2018



It’s that ghostly time of year!

Fall fun kicks into high gear with Halloween, and towns and cities all across the nation celebrate in spooktacular style with festive 5Ks. Costume contests, music, food, trick-or-treating, zombies – you can find it all, and there’s a pretty good chance you’ll be running for a good cause too. So, lace up your shoes, throw on a costume, and get racing this Halloween.

Eastern USA

5th Annual Halloween 5K Dash – Salisbury, MD

Salisbury University’s Student United Way hosts this super-fun annual event in the beautiful state of Maryland. The “zombie-infested” Halloween 5K Dash takes place October 27th on campus with all proceeds benefiting the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore.

The Halloween 5K is just the beginning too. Afterwards, there’s the frightfully-fun 1K Zombie Walk followed by an awesome outdoor party featuring a costume contest, awards ceremony, DJ, games, food and photo-ops with zombies! It’s one, big Halloween treat – and all for a good cause.

25th Annual Goblin Gallop 5K & Halloween Hop Kids Run – Glen Falls, NY

Situated near the scenic Adirondack Mountains is the charming town of Glen Falls, NY. This year they celebrate their 25th Goblin Gallop 5K and Halloween Hop Kids Run (1K). This event happens October 27th and benefits the Adirondack Runners and Nepal Village School Project.

Awards based on age categories will be handed out, but every participant in the kids’ Halloween Hop will receive a yummy treat bag. If you’re running in the Goblin Gallop 5K, you can expect an easy, fast and flat course. Be sure to dress your Halloween best! A special costume raffle takes place post-race.

Jack O’Lantern Jog – Canonsburg, PA

2018 marks the 14th year of the Jack O’Lantern Jog in Canonsburg, PA. This 5K run and 1K walk supports the area’s Community Scholarship Foundation and awards medals to all finishers. Special recognition is also given to the top three men and women overall; plus there’s lots of other awards based on age categories.

After the Jack O’Lantern Jog, stick around for the huge Chinese-style raffle, which will offer hundreds of prizes. You can also choose to enter the race as a team and compete for team awards. The Jack O’Lantern Jog takes place October 27th.

Ghost, Goblins & Ghouls Spooktacular 5K & Scarecrow Sprint Fun Run – Ashburn, VA

Just outside Washington, D.C. is lovely Loudon County – a perfect setting for a Halloween event like Ashburn’s Ghost, Goblins & Ghouls Spooktacular 5K and Scarecrow Sprint Fun Run. This family-friendly event features lots of activities for adults and kids and benefits Kids Run the Nation, a non-profit promoting healthy living for the nation’s youth. There is, of course, a Halloween costume contest, plus kids’ trick or treating and a pre-race HYPE party.

Rather go as a team than run solo? Build your dream squad and race against other teams in this fall-fun 5K run. This “ghostly” course is staged for Halloween, but never fear – happy, costumed volunteers and live entertainment will be there to help you along your way. The Ghost, Goblins & Ghouls Spooktacular 5K takes place Saturday, October 27th at The Barn. 

Western USA

Costume 5K Fun Run – San Jose, CA

Previously known as Run With the Zombies, the Costume 5K Fun Run takes place October 27th at Kelley Park in San Jose, CA. This event is open to adults and youth, runners and walkers, and it benefits the San Jose Parks Foundation.

Costumes for the Costume 5K Fun Run are encouraged, and a make-up artist will be available on site for a “modest” fee. Run solo or run as a team, but don’t miss the fun. Every participant will receive a medal.

Northern/Midwest USA

Fright Night 5K – Ann Arbor, MI

Run if you dare! The annual Fright Night 5K at Gallup Park in Ann Arbor promises lots of “spooktacular” thrills along the course, including a glow-in-the-dark zone, strobe lights, fog machines and ghouls. A little less scary is the DJ that keeps the music going throughout the entire race. Every runner will receive a Fright Night Halloween cape and run bib, and as a bonus, you can select a charity to run for. That gives you even more of a reason to make this 5K a must-do. Make sure you don’t miss all the music and fun before the run. This event happens Saturday, October 27th.

Haunted Horsey Hustle & Hoopla – Marshfield, WI

On October 27th at the Wildwood Park and Zoo, Wisconsin gets it Haunted Horsey Hustle & Hoopla on. This 5K run and 1K walk is a family event – dogs included! Just make sure your furry friends remain on a leash.

As with many other Halloween runs, the Haunted Horsey Hustle & Hoopla welcomes costumes for humans and animals alike. This event will feature costume contests, a pumpkin pie decorating contest, chili and pie cooking contests, Kiss the Donkey’s Patoot contest, raffles and other kid activities. It’s a true full-on fall celebration. Proceeds benefit the HART Equine Therapy Center of Auburndale, WI.

Southern USA

Trunk or Treat 5K – Canton, GA

Head to Etowah River Park on October 27th for the Trunk or Treat 5K and 1K in Canton, GA. All runners receive a glow-in-the-dark shirt and glow-in-the-dark medal. The after-party will keep the fun going with food, face-painting, vendors and trick-or-treating for the kids. All activities take place in the park, and the event even includes a “sensory friendly” area. Dress up in a spooktacular Halloween costume and compete for prizes. Kids and adults each get a chance at winning a costume contest. The Trunk or Treat 5K helps support “autism initiatives” in the Canton community.

Rhodes Race at the Haunted Castle 5K – Atlanta, GA

The 10th annual Rhodes Race at the Haunted Castle 5K takes place October 27th in Ansley Park, one of “America’s 10 Great Neighborhoods.” Proceeds benefit the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation.

More than just a race, this 5K is a family event; it’s even dog and stroller friendly. Participants are encouraged to run or walk in their spookiest Halloween costume. Stay for the “hair-raising” after-party and discover if Rhodes Hall is truly a “haunted castle.” There’ll also be prizes, food and a costume contest.

Trick or Trot 5K – Sunrise, FL

Come out for some Halloween fun at the second annual Trick or Trot 5K in Sunrise, FL. It’s an event for the whole family no matter your age or skill level. There’s even a Kids’ Dash for kids age 10 and under. (Bonus: Each kid receives a T-shirt and commemorative medal.)

The 5K and Kids’ Dash takes place at Markham Park near the Everglades Conservation Area, and prizes will be awarded. Show up in your favorite Halloween costume – the best ones will receive special recognition post-race. This event benefits a great cause, the Paralyzed Veterans of America, and takes place Saturday, October 27th.


From the mountains of New York to Florida’s Everglades and California’s golden coast, Halloween is one of the best times of year for racing. Worthy causes, community spirit and family fun all add up to a memorable, can’t-miss events. Register today for any of these awesome 5Ks or check out RaceThread for other Halloween runs in your area.