Grab your swim trunks and kick off your shoes: June marks the return of the annual “Kids’ Summer Beach Runs” on Siesta Key and North Brohard beaches. These free events offer one-mile fun runs for kids and families. In past years, the events attracted hundreds of kids each week—and this year is sure to be the same, since the events are back to being in-person after two years of going virtual due to the pandemic.
The outdoor events will take place every Tuesday and Wednesday in June and July this year. Sarasota youth beach activities run from June 7 through July 26 at Siesta Beach in Siesta Key. On Wednesdays, June 1 through Jul 27, the events take place at North Brohard Beach in Venice. Due to the Fourth of July holiday, no runs are scheduled for Tuesday, July 5, at Siesta Beach, or Wednesday, July 6, at North Brohard Beach.
Sarasota County Recreation and Natural Resources Beaches and Water Access Division manager Scott Moranda says the races are an excellent way to keep children active and healthy throughout the summer.
"The series was started in partnership with the Manasota Track Club more than 35 years ago," says Moranda. "It's a great way to connect to nature and the community."
Registration begins at 5:30 p.m. near the playground at Siesta Beach and near the Venice Fishing Pier at North Brohard Beach. Attendees can begin lining up to start each race at 6:30 p.m. for both locations. Parents are welcome to join, too.
Participants will receive a finisher ribbon at the end of each race. However, there are more prizes awarded to those who are a little more competitive. Kids who complete four runs receive a free T-shirt, a free kid's meal coupon for Gecko's Grill & Pub, and a 50 percent off coupon for kid's New Balance shoes. The runs can be completed at either location to receive these awards.