2012 Holiday Races in Washington

You’ll find holiday-themed races almost every weekend in December in DC, Maryland, and Virginia.

It's December, which means there are tons of holiday races scheduled around DC, Maryland, and Virginia. Photograph courtesy of Shutterstock.

Thanksgiving may have just ended, but the holidays are just around the corner. For local runners, that means it’s time to start booking up your weekends with a holiday race or two. Start pulling out those reindeer antlers and Santa costumes—lots of the following runs encourage you to don your most festive getup.


Jingle All the Way 8K
Sunday, December 9, 9 AM
Northwest DC
Pacers hosts the popular Jingle All the Way 8K beginning at Freedom Plaza. The course runs through downtown DC and past the US Capitol, museums, and across the National Mall. That race benefits Habitat for Humanity of Washington, DC. $35 to register. 

Christmas Caper 5K/10K Run and Walk
Saturday, December 22, 7:50 AM
Southwest DC

Potomac Valley Track Club hosts these three races that begin at the East Potomac Golf Course by Hains Point. The top three finishers in each age group receive Christmas ornaments. $8 to register for nonmembers; price increases as race date approaches. 


YCF Jingle Bell Jog 5K
Saturday, December 1, 10:30 AM

The second annual YCF Jingle Bell Jog 5K starts on the Bluemont Trail near Marymount University in Ballston. The 3.1-mile race follows paved trails throughout Arlington and benefits the Trust for the National Mall. Runners receive a T-shirt and an invitation to the post-race party. $35 to register. 

Celtic Christmas 5K and Fun Run
Saturday, December 8, 8:30 AM
Fairfax Station
If you love yourself some Riverdance, this 5K race with the Boyle School of Irish Dance may be for you. The race includes Irish dance performances, Irish music along the course, and food and drinks. $25 to register for the 5K and $12 for the one-mile walk. 

Metropolitan DC Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis 5K
Saturday, December 8, 9 AM

Runners are encouraged to don their best festive attire for this run/walk benefiting the fight against arthritis. Participate as an individual or a team and raise funds for the Arthritis Foundation. $35 to register. 

Reston Run With Santa 5K
Sunday, December 9, 8:30 AM

Need a reason to dust off your Santa costume? This race is for you. The Santa 5K at Reston Town Center includes a costume contest, plus free massages and food post-race. Registration is $30 until December 2. 


Rockville Jingle Bell Jog 8K
Sunday, December 9, 9 AM

The Montgomery Road Runners Club hosts its last race of the year through a residential neighborhood in Rockville. The event is perfect for those looking for a low-key race, and registration is race day only. $10 for nonmembers. 

Jolly Fat Man’s Run
Saturday, December 15, 8 AM

The 17th annual Jolly Fat Man’s Run is unlike any other race—you pick the distance. Whether your run 4 miles or 14, the race will benefit Operation Second Chance, a nonprofit organization that helps wounded veterans and their families. It begins at the Capital Crescent Trail; runners must be back at the starting line by 10 AM for a hot breakfast. $34 to register.