Thousands expected to run Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon and 5K

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — The Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon festival weekend has begun.

Thousands of runners stopped by the Virginia Beach Convention Center on Friday to pick up their race bibs.

This year, the 5K race will take place on Saturday at 14th Street and Pacific Avenue, before the one-mile beach run on the sand.

Photos: Thousands participate in race

“The move to separate the 5K and half marathon is expected to improve the experience for both 5K and half marathon runners, said Madora Mak, the event’s manager. “And participants who complete the 5K on Saturday and half marathon on Sunday will earn both races’ medals plus a third Remix Challenge medal.”

Those who run both the Saturday 5K and the Mile on the Sand can earn a bonus Land to Sand Challenge pin.

Sunday’s events include the half marathon and post-race concert featuring Sister Hazel. The half marathon has a new start line this year at 14th Street and Pacific Avenue. Runners will start next to Atlantic Fun Park on Pacific between 14th and 15th Streets, then head up Pacific, making their first turn at the iconic King Neptune statue.

“With the start and finish lines within walking distance, it will be very convenient for runners to coordinate with friends and family as well as for spectators to catch a glimpse of the beginning and end of the race,” said Mak.

The post race concert in partnership with the American Music Festival will be held on the beach at the 17th Street finish line and is free and open to the public.