10 spring races for runners of every level

Including a pet-friendly walk and a relay.

Kyric Avery of Arlington and Jenny Ahn of Somerville embrace after crossing the finish line during the Run to Remember on May 26, 2013. Jessica Rinaldi For The Boston Globe

As winter melts away, the prospect of an outdoor run seems more and more feasible. If it’s not your year to throw your hat into the Boston Marathon ring, there are plenty of other races around New England. Here are 10 spring ones to get you moving, whether you’re starting out or you’re a seasoned runner.


Fast Friends Race & Walk
Runners who also love dogs might have a soft spot for this pick. The event, hosted by a New Hampshire greyhound adoption center, offers a 4.5-mile race around the Yale Forest, as well as a pet-friendly, 2-mile walk. The latter jaunt is noncompetitive, if you’re looking for some low-impact exercise with man’s best friend. (Saturday, March 30 at 9:15 a.m.; Fast Friends Greyhound Adoption Center, Swanzey, N.H.; $20-$25 for adults, $10-$15 for children; all ages)

The 26.2 Challenge
The 26.2 miles that make up a marathon are far less daunting when you divvy up the work. At this marathon relay, teams of six each run a distance of just more than 4 miles. When it’s not your turn to hit the pavement, a transition area with a live DJ keeps the energy up. (Saturday, April 20 at 9 a.m.; Cordage Park, Plymouth; $240 per team; all ages)

Boston Marine Corps Honor Run 5K
Run alongside members of local law enforcement groups, as well as active duty officers and veterans from all branches of the US military at this South Boston run. Marine Corps cadets even lead a warm-up before everyone gets going. (Saturday, May 11 at 7 a.m.; DCR’s Carson Beach, South Boston; $20-$50; 18+)


Black Birch Vineyard 10-Miler
Black Birch will host its first race this spring, supporting the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. The race will start and end at the rural winery, taking runners through two New England towns. And yes, there will be a glass of wine for each runner at the end. (Sunday, March 31 at 10 a.m.; Black Birch Vineyard, Hatfield; $65; 18+ to run, 21+ to run and partake in wine drinking)


Burlington to Collinsville Classic 10K
This waterside run takes participants along Connecticut’s Farmington River Trail. Chili and cornbread will await all those who cross the finish line. (Sunday, May 5 at 8:30 a.m.; Lake Garda Elementary School, Burlington, Conn.; $45-$50; 9+)

Cape Cod Canal Mother’s Day 10 km
Shake up your plans with mom this year and try out a 10-kilometer run along the Cape Cod shore. (Sunday, May 12 at 7:30 a.m.; Bourne Science Park, Buzzards Bay; $39.99; 18+)


Eastern States 20 Mile & Half Marathon
Originally designed as a pre-Boston Marathon training race, this course leads runners from Kittery, Maine, along the New Hampshire coast to Salisbury, Mass., covering seven towns across three states. For those not ready to commit to a full 20 miles, a Run for the Border Half Marathon starts in Wallis Sands Beach in Rye, N.H. the same day and concludes at the Massachusetts border. (Sunday, March 24; Kittery, Maine; $70; all ages)

Great Bay Half Marathon and The Center for Orthopedics & Movement 5K
This New Hampshire race is held near the Great Bay estuary. The course promises sightings of local animals such as bald eagles and a finish line in the heart of Newmarket, N.H. For an added kick (weather permitting), belly dancers at mile 10 and live music at four locations along the course will be thrown in for some course-side entertainment. (Sunday, April 7 at 9:30 a.m.; Newmarket Mills, Newmarket, N.H.; $39 for the 5K, $79 for the half marathon; 18+)

Martha’s Vineyard Marathon & Half Marathon & 2-Person Half Marathon Relay
At this race, you have the option to bring a friend. Full and half marathons are offered, as well as a two-person marathon relay split into a 5.3- and 7.8-mile leg. For those competing solo, the course takes runners among many scenic points of the island, including the bridge featured in “Jaws.” (Saturday, May 18 at 8:30 a.m.; Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School, Martha’s Vineyard; $109-$175; all ages)


Boston Run to Remember
The 15th iteration of this run for fallen first responders and law enforcement officers is on Memorial Day weekend every year. There is an option to complete either a 5-mile run or half marathon, with both courses leading runners by local sites such as Boston Common, Faneuil Hall, Government Center, the Old State House, Post Office Square, the Public Garden, and the State House. (Sunday, May 26 at 7 a.m.; Seaport World Trade Center, Boston; $50-$120; 18+)