The Olympia Lakefair Races (3K, 8K and Half Marathon) are organized by the Lake Run Organization, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, and the Olympia Downtown Rotary Club. The primary purpose of the races is to raise money for local public high school cross country and track & field programs and local Rotary youth scholarships and grants. The races are traditionally held the third Saturday of July, with the races starting at 7am (Half Marathon), 8am (8K), and 8:05am (3K). The 3K race is free to any participant 14 years and younger. There are prizes for overall, masters (40+), super masters (50+), and top three 5-year age group winners up to 90+ in each race. Additionally, several random prizes are awarded, and post-race food and snacks are provided. Tech T-shirts are included with entries ($10 extra for free 14 & under 3K participants), and Half Marathon finishers receive a finisher medal. Free downloadable and sharable photos listed by participant and results are posted on the website. See www.olympialakefairraces.org for more details.
Starting in 1975, the Lakefair Races were directed by the Olympia Rain Runners running club. The races have varied in distances over the years with distances of two miles, 3k, 8k, 10k, half marathon, and marathon. When The Olympia Rain Runners dissolved, the races were absorbed by the Capital City Marathon Association. After a few years, the Marathon Association, wanting to focus on its own races, turned over the Lakefair Races to two local Capital High School coaches. They created the Lake Run Organization, a member of the Road Runners Club of America.
In 2016, the Olympia Downtown Rotary Club approached the Lake Run Organization to partner in sponsoring the events. The following year, the Lake Run Organization in partnership with the Olympia Downtown Rotary Club rebranded the three race event as the “Olympia Lakefair Races”. The aim of this effort is to continue the tradition of the races, honor the running past of Olympia, and support high school running and other non-profits supported by the Lake Run Organization and Olympia Downtown Rotary.
While the Lake Run Organization is a separate non-profit organization from Capital Lakefair, both organizations have traditionally held the events during the third week in July, with the Olympia Lakefair Races on Saturday morning, starting in downtown, and finishing on Fifth Avenue at Heritage Park. Other than sharing the dates and donating funds to local area youth, the two organizations are not related. We welcome runners and walkers of all ages and abilities, and have multiple age, wheelchair and disabled divisions and awards.