Premier Races

The following are MRG-endorsed races taking place in Michigan in 2019.

MRG has been in direct contact with organizers of these events and is working with them to spread the word and encourage runners to sign on. In some cases, MRG may also be running the event. For complete event details — and race discount codes in some cases — as well as to register, please be sure to click on the race links provided.

Race Directors: learn more about becoming a premier race by contacting MRG at heather [at] michiganrunnergirl [dot] com 

Premier Races automatically are listed as Featured Races on the Michigan Race & Event Calendar ($150 value). See the Submit an Event page to learn more about becoming a Featured Race on the calendar.


The all-new trail race, Ragnar Michigan Trail, is set for June 15-16, 2019. Escape the daily grind in the beautiful Michigan countryside of Hanson Hills Recreation Area. Your team will take turns running over two days and one night, relay-style, on three smooth, single track trails perfect for any runner experience level. You’ll run on lush forested pine and maple paths, over rolling hills with scenic bluff overviews. Registration is now closed for this inaugural race.

The Race: Mercy Health Seaway Run Half Marathon, 10K & 5K Run/Walk on Saturday, June 22, 2019 in Muskegon, Mich. The Mercy Health Seaway Run has been a tradition in Muskegon for over three decades and includes a half marathon and the new-in-2018 10K, which follows the 5K course and then through the amazing Nims neighborhood; or try the 5K and Community Fun Walk course, winding through historic neighborhoods with views of beautiful Muskegon Lake. From a fun walk to a beautiful half marathon course, the Mercy Health Seaway Run has an event for everyone.

The Discount: Use the code MRG2019 to save $5 off your race entry. Get registered here »

The Race: Two Hearted Trail Run 50K, Marathon &
Half Marathon on June 22, 2019 in Paradise, Mich. Located in the remote, wild northeastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan, the Two Hearted River captured the imagination of Ernest Hemingway in his novel “The Big Two Hearted River.” In addition to world class trout fishing this region features one of the most remarkable stretches of shoreline in the entire Lake Superior basin. Runners in the 50K and Marathon will experience this rugged coastline first hand via single track on high bluffs and more intimate shoreline forests. In addition, the race course winds inland along the shores of Culhane Lake and the Little Two Hearted River. The course is 80% single track and 20% dirt forest road or two track. This course has the capacity to transform the way you see nature and the world. The half marathon is a challenging loop that takes runners through old growth white pine forest and along the much loved ridge on the southern shore of Clark Lake. All races finish at the Upper Tahquamenon Falls, second highest east of the Mississippi. Camp 33 Brew Pub is located 200 meters from the finish.

The Discount: Use code CULHANE10 to take $10 off your race entry. Get registered here »

The RaceTri Goddess Triathlon, Sunday, June 23 at Big Portage State Park (near Ann Arbor). Tri Goddess Tri celebrates women of all abilities, inspiring them to reach new heights of health and set new fitness goals by training for and completing a triathlon. The first-ever all-women’s triathlon/duathlon in Michigan, Tri Goddess Tri is organized by women who know how to make your first (or hundredth!) triathlon tons of fun! The event is held just 12 miles west of Chelsea at the Portage Lake Unit of Waterloo State Recreation Area, surrounding our participants in scenery as beautiful and inspiring as themselves. This race includes the following options: Sprint & Mini Sprint, and Aquabike & Duathlon.

The Discount: Use the code 2019MRG10 to save 10% off your race entry. Sign up here »

The RaceStars, Stripes, and Splatter, a 5K Color Race, Saturday, June 29 at the Grand Traverse Resort and Spa near Traverse City. This is a color run style event with color stations featuring patriotic colors.

The 3.1 mile course will start at Jazz Live Field on the grounds of Grand Traverse Resort and Spa and loop back to the start area, with portions of the race running on Lautner road.

The race will be followed by an after-party with refreshments, an inflatable obstacle course, color toss and a spray down area.

Beer from Short’s Brewing company will be available for sale following the race. Must be 21. Must provide photo ID.

We are pleased to announce that in 2019 we will continue our partnership with Habitat for Humanity-Grand Traverse Region! We hope to support local Habitat-GTR efforts through volunteer partnerships as well as by helping to grow donations and interest. 

The Discount: Use the code MIRUNNERGIRL to save on your race entry. Get registered here »

The Race: Michigan Runner Girl Women’s 10K & 5K on Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019 in beautiful northern Michigan, near the shores of Lake Michigan on the picturesque Leelanau Peninsula. 

This all-women’s event takes place in Leelanau’s wine country, on the sprawling 45 North Vineyard & Winery property just outside the village of Suttons Bay and 20 miles north of Traverse City. You’ll experience the vineyard’s gorgeous trails (created just for running, cycling and hiking). You’ll receive a sweet finisher’s medal and commemorative wine glass (and a wine pour, if you’d like one; we’ll have non-alcoholic drinks available, too).

Then sip, savor and celebrate your awesome accomplishment with so many other strong and amazing women!

We hope you’ll join us for the first-ever Michigan Runner Girl Trail 10K & 5K this Aug. 4 in northern Michigan. A portion of the event proceeds will be donated to Michigan-based environmental organizations. (More details to come on this!)

The Discount: Use the code TRAILMRG to take $5 off your race entry. Get registered here »

The RaceBrainy Day 5K/10K Trail Run, Aug. 17, 2019 in Nunica, Mich. is a fun, community event to support and raise awareness for those who suffer from a neurological condition called hydrocephalus. All proceeds are donated to The Brainy Day Fund, which supports families through a scholarship program as well as provides research grants for medical professionals looking to end hydrocephalus.

The 5K course includes sandy areas, some hills, beautiful wooded areas, a pond and amazing Nunica farmland. It is a great first trail run for beginners and a moderately fast course for trail lovers of all skill levels.

The 10K course is challenging, but offers a sense of accomplishment that will empower you and leave you feeling awesome. Much hillier than the 5k, the course is breathtakingly stunning in more than one way. The 10K course is perfect for adventure-seeking, nature-loving trail runners.

The DiscountUse the code MRG2019 to receive 20% off your race entry. Registration opens Dec. 21, 2018. Register here »


The Race: Holland Haven Marathon, Half Marathon and 8K on Sunday, Sept. 8, 2019 in Holland, Mich. You will experience the beautiful coast of Lake Michigan during the marathon, as you travel from Grand Haven to Holland. This USATF certified, point-to-point marathon follows Lakeshore Drive past the summer cottages right into downtown Holland.  The early September weekend allows for mild weather and a final opportunity to qualify for the Boston Marathon. Boston-qualifying hopefuls can make the cut only one day before registration opens.  

The Holland Haven Half Marathon begins at Camp Geneva along the Lake Michigan coastline. You’ll follow the scenic Lakeshore Drive past the beaches and into the City of Holland. The flat and fast course is comprised of paved bike paths along Lake Michigan and Lake Macatawa. This one-way race is one-of-a-kind in West Michigan, uniting communities in a unique event.

The Holland Haven 8K race is a great segue into longer distance races. The 8K race is a flat, out-and-back course. As a mid-distance road race, it is accessible enough for the novice runner yet incredibly challenging to experienced racers.  All ages are welcome to run or walk the race.

The Team Runner series allows runners to form teams of 4 to 8 runners. Coed teams are allowed and there are no age restrictions. All Team Runners on the same team must run individually within the same race. Each Team Runner is scored based on their individual age group placing. Total Team Runner score for the team is the sum of the best 4 finishing places for that team.

The after-party celebration for runners is at the all-new Holland Civic Center. There is local beer, local cider, local food, live music and the race expo. Every race finisher receives a commemorative race medal. Those completing all 3 race distances in separate years earn the coveted Trifecta Medal. Register here »

The Discount: Use the code MRGHOLLAND12 to save $12 on your race entry. Register here »

The Race: American Home Fitness Detroit Women’s Half Marathon, 10K & 5K on Sunday, Sept. 15 on Belle Isle, Detroit. This event was created by women for women. All women, of all ages, of all abilities. First-time racers and experienced marathoners. The young and the young at heart. Join your sisters on beautiful Belle Isle State Park and celebrate your strength, your beauty, your inner grace… everything that makes you the goddess you are!

The American Home Fitness Detroit Women’s Half Marathon, 10K, & 5K is walker friendly!

The Discount: Use the code 2019MRG10 to save 10% off your race entry. Register here »

Reebok Ragnar Michigan Road Sept. 27-28 starts in Muskegon and ends in Traverse City. What do you get when you combine an overnight relay, sugar sand beaches, lighthouses and 12 adventurous friends? Reebok Ragnar Michigan Road. For two days and one star-filled night, run through the vibrant fall foliage, picturesque towns and along the sand dunes of Lake Michigan. And if that isn’t enough you’ll spend 9 legs with beautiful beach views.

The Discount: Use the code MRG2019 to take $80 off your team entry. Register here »

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