Life Time gains city approval to expand single day race into weekend festival, Oct. 19-20,with downtown area 5K race on Saturday and half marathon, relay & 10K on Sunday.

The 14th Annual First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon, Relay & 10K, a signature event produced by Life Time, the premier healthy lifestyle brand, is expanding its course offerings for the October 20th  fall race. These include a first-ever run 5K downtown race on October 19th  and new local charity partnership with Girls on the Run Greater Tampa Bay and its Sarasota and Manatee County school programs.

Weekend Race Festival: First-Ever Run through Downtown

Having evolved into a weekend race festival, scheduled for October 19-20, 2019, the new 5K course, starting at 7 a.m. on October 19th,  will start/finish near Five Points Park and Fit2Run in downtown Sarasota. The 5K is open to runners, walkers and push-rim wheelchairs. Strollers will also be allowed, starting at the back of the starting line corral. 

The addition of the Saturday 5K race is expected to draw at least 750 additional participants to the estimated 2,500 half marathon, relay and 10K total, bringing a significant economic boost to hoteliers, restaurants and retail stores during the slower fall season. According to a 2016 economic impact report, the First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon & Relay brought more than $3.4 million and generated over 1,300 hotel nights when it was only a one day event. Since then, Life Time has also added a 10K (2017) and now 5K to the event offerings.

Half Marathon, Relay & 10K course

The half marathon, relay and 10K will continue to showcase the beautiful Sarasota area, starting at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday, October 20. All participants will start/finish at Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall and embark along a captivating waterfront route, including the John Ringling Bridge, around St. Armand’s Circle before heading toward downtown Sarasota.  Half marathon and relay participants will then continue up Tamiami Trail where they will turn onto Indian Beach Road and connect to Bay Shore Road to run the second half of the course through the scenic waterfront neighborhood before turning around to return to Van Wezel. All athletes will finish along the stunning Sarasota Bay. The half marathon, relay and 10K courses are open to runners and walkers with a four-hour course limit. Push-rim wheelchairs and strollers will only be permitted on the 5K course on Saturday.

Every Runner Counts: Girls on the Run Greater Tampa Bay Partnership

As part of its newly formed partnership with Girls on the Run Greater Tampa Bay (GOTR), Life Time will be making a per registration donation to GOTR to help grow and support the non-profit organization’s Sarasota and Manatee County after-school fitness and life skills training programs.  In addition, every person registering will have the opportunity to round up or make an additional donation to the GOTR program, with all proceeds benefitting Sarasota and Manatee County participants.

About Girls on the Run Greater Tampa Bay

Currently, the after-school program includes more than 60+  locations, spanning from Venice to North Tampa.  Each 10-week session, offered in the spring and fall of every year, includes transformational physical activity and positive youth development skills to more 600 girls in third through eighth grades. The program has proven to bring long lasting positive mental and social skill benefits to 97 percent of the participants by unleashing confidence through accomplishment while establishing a lifetime appreciation of health and fitness.

“Life Time is very excited about the opportunity to grow the multi-distance fall race into a weekend festival and help support Girls on the Run Greater Tampa Bay, one of the region’s most important after-school fitness and life skills programs,” said Nicole Bostick, Senior Brand Marketing Manager for Life Time. “Hosting the event in October will also bring added benefits to participants and Sarasota’s economy with more hotel and transportation availability, competitive pricing and the added influx of runners and participants who come to visit and race at a typically slower time of year.”

Registration, Perks and Post-Race Party

Registration for the all races can be made at www.runsarasota.com and will remain open through race day mornings for both the 5K (October 19) and half marathon, relay or 10K (October 20).  Finishers of all races will receive a special dolphin inspired finisher medal, technical t-shirt, on-course aid station support and awards ceremony.

The 5K participants will receive a post-race First Watch continental breakfast along with an invitation to join Half Marathon, Relay & 10K finishers on Sunday for the signature First Watch breakfast buffet, including on-site griddle cooked pancakes and new for 2019, First Watch’s signature A.M. Superfoods Bowls, along with fresh muffins, fruit and other treats.

Participants from all four race distances who are 21 years or older will also have access to the bayside beer garden with a wrist band and live music on Sunday. The First Watch Sunday Breakfast is open to all 5K, half marathon, relay and 10K finishers (only) with a visible finisher’s medal for entry. Participants from all four race distances who are 21 years or older will also have access to the bayside beer garden with a wrist band and live music on Sunday. The First Watch Sunday Breakfast is open to all 5K, half marathon, relay and 10K finishers (only) with a visible finisher’s medal for entry.

About First Watch
First Watch specializes in award-winning, made-to-order Breakfast, Brunch and Lunch. A recipient of more than 200 “Best Breakfast” and “Best Brunch” accolades, First Watch offers traditional favorites, such as omelets, pancakes, sandwiches and salads, and unique specialty items like Quinoa Power Bowls, Avocado Toast and the Chickichanga. First Watch was recognized as one of TripAdvisor’s Best Restaurant Chains for 2019, one of Business Intelligence Group’s Best Places to Work in 2018 and as one of Nation’s Restaurant News’ 2017 Second 100 restaurant brands. First Watch is the largest and fastest-growing daytime-only restaurant concept in the United States with more than 375 restaurants in 32 states, including more than 340 First Watch restaurants and 40 The Egg & I restaurants and one Sun & Fork restaurant. For more information, visit firstwatch.com.

About Life Time® Healthy Way of Life Life Time champions a healthy and happy life for its members across 144 destinations in 39 major markets in the U.S. and Canada. the premier healthy lifestyle brand, Life Time delivers an unmatched athletic resort experience and provides a comprehensive healthy living, healthy aging and healthy entertainment experience that goes well beyond fitness to encompass the entire spectrum of daily life for individuals, couples and families of all ages. For more information visit www.lifetime.life.

Media Contact:

Holly Johnson | Imagica 941.350.9615 | holly@imagica.us