SOLEDAD — It’s been two years since the running of the Salinas Valley Half Marathon, a scenic 13.1-mile run through the vineyards and rich agricultural lands of “Steinbeck country.”

The event was canceled last year just three days before race day due to unhealthy air quality in the region from the nearby massive Soberanes fire. Runners are now amped and ready to run this Aug. 5.

The race starts at the historic Soledad Mission along Ft. Romie Road in Soledad. Runners head south, then west to River Road, home of the River Road Wine Trail, which features numerous wine tasting rooms along the route.

The race ends at Pessagno Winery with a festive finish celebration complete with wine tasting, beer, music, a recovery zone, no-host barbecue and awards presentation.

“We’re anticipating a great event after last year’s cancellation,” said Doug Thurston, race director of the Salinas Valley Half Marathon, now a part of the Big Sur Marathon family of events. “We’re looking forward to providing a fun and high-quality event in this scenic area.”

Approximately 1,000 runners from more than two dozen states and a half-dozen countries are expected for the eighth annual event.

“We’re excited about showcasing this part of our county,” Thurston said. “Our mission is to create beautiful events that promote fitness and benefit the community. This race fits nicely into our portfolio of running events.”

Registration is still available for the Salinas Valley Half Marathon at a fee of $95.

For more information and to sign up, visit

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.


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