Wineglass Half Marathon Review and Tips

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Be it the wine or stunning autumn foliage, this race draws runners in droves to its start line. Both the Guthrie Wineglass Marathon and Wegmans Wineglass Half are regularly recognized among the premier runs in America.

Start times don’t start too early, giving you plenty of energy for a long journey towards completion.

Scenic Route

The Wineglass Half Marathon offers runners a scenic point-to-point course from Campbell (halfway point of the Full Marathon) to Historic Market Street in Corning. Consistently ranked amongst the best first-time half marathons, this race draws thousands of runners from all over the world every fall to this idyllic small town setting and features some very fast personal records that regularly fall! Additionally, Boston qualifying spots may also be possible at this race.

On race day, I found the temperature ideal. We started our morning with a frost advisory warning; but after weeks of heat and humidity it was refreshingly cool! Temperatures dropped from 40 degrees at 5 am down to about 34 by the time we started running the race.

Arriving on race day for both the half and full marathon can be quite an ordeal; however, there is an easy and convenient solution available: taking a VIP bus stocked with pre-race snacks and beverages! At $300 (for 12/15/2022-6/14/2023), this ride provides an opportunity to be apart from the chaos while waiting in comfort until it’s time to walk your starting line.

The route is beautiful, taking participants past vineyards and forests alike. The final few miles are especially stunning as runners return to downtown Corning for the final stretch with enthusiastic spectators cheering along their path. All finishers receive a handcrafted glass medal that continues the long tradition of Wineglass medals while male and female overall winners also receive a Steuben Crystal Disc prize!

Freebies

With both full marathon and half marathon events on the schedule, one might assume race weekend would be overwhelming for participants; however, organizers manage the crowds by providing many freebies. Alongside an event expo and race expo, runners can participate in the Storflex 5K on Saturday and a full day of events that celebrate local culture. Previous years’ editions attracted thousands from throughout the United States as well as 15 countries; after COVID restrictions were removed this year runners from around the globe descended upon Finger Lakes region to run this popular marathon that also serves as Boston qualifier!

The Wineglass-branded Marathon and Half Marathon Expo offers an assortment of apparel and gear at reasonable expo prices, along with standard running needs such as hydration products and nutrition. There is also an impressive table where runners can collect some sweet swag; depending on when they register, marathon and half marathon costs range between $90-135 respectively, providing runners with long sleeve tech half zip, wicking quarter zip and stemless glass bearing the race logo as prizes!

If you finish in the top 3 finishers in both races, you will receive an engraved wine carafe as a prize. Breakers of course records will also receive cash bonuses while overall first place male and female winners will be presented with exquisite Steuben crystal discs as rewards.

Visit the Wineglass Half Marathon Expo and check out one of the glass blowing classes, taught by an artisan who can craft you a special souvenir of this race weekend – such as a personalized piece of glass art designed by you! Just be sure to book early, as spots fill quickly over race weekend. While not cheap – classes cost between $35-50; simply bring your bib number with you to sign up!

Wine Tasting

England may be best known for its rainy climate, its love of tea and tribute to The Beatles; but its wine region also makes it a top tourist spot and running events like Corelle 5K of Wineglass Half Marathon allow wine enthusiasts to sample local vino as they cross the finish line.

runners are encouraged to take advantage of this event even if they do not drink alcohol, in order to support local wineries and help build their reputation among residents. Race organizers work with vendors at the expo booths in order to offer discounted tickets for runners – including local grocery store Wegmans just blocks from the start/finish area.

The event medal also pays homage to its region, known for producing wine as well as glassworks and ceramics (such as Corning Ware). Featuring an inlaid design of wine bottle bottoms, runners and visitors alike can take home this memorable memento of their experience with them as a great souvenir from this event!

Focus on Charity

Wineglass Half Marathon organizers have taken great steps to mitigate the pandemic’s effect on their event, keeping many of the amenities that runners have come to expect in place while ordering/shipping items such as race shirts post event.

Wineglass is a not-for-profit organization that annually donates over $110,000 in charitable contributions to local organizations like Sayre House of Hope, Girls on the Run and Wineglass Scholarship Fund. Their spirit of giving extends even into their running community, with participants offering to waive entry fees to support Wineglass races.

If you are fortunate enough to attend this popular race, you will surely find much to enjoy from its course, food and beverages and atmosphere – not forgetting its unparalleled sense of community! For those unable to travel all the way out to New York State for it this month or beyond there are countless virtual races you can join for their virtual participation and beyond.

Finisher’s Medal

As this race is named for its wine country location, runners and spectators alike will get to sample an array of vino at the finish line. The Wine Festival at New York’s Finger Lakes provides Rieslings, Chardonnays, Pinot Noirs and sparkling wines from New York; food trucks provide additional refreshments while music entertainment keeps pace throughout.

This event stands out with its own finisher’s medal that incorporates glass from the Corning Glass Museum into its design – providing participants with an enjoyable reminder of their time spent here!

No matter the weather conditions for this year’s marathon event, spectators were friendly and supportive along the route. Runners often expressed their thanks for receiving encouragement from crowds that cheered, waved signs or rang bells along the course – it made running more enjoyable for first-time marathoners who may not be used to such extensive spectator support.

Closing Thoughts

The Expo is also small but provides all of the essential gear that would be expected at such a race, including T-shirts and accessories such as drawstring totes. A quarter zip long sleeve shirt, drawstring tote bag and stemless wine glass bearing their race logo are among these products, plus runners can purchase additional items at discounted rates either during or postrace weekend.

VIP options are now available for the full and half marathon races, for only $300 you can board a coach-style bus that will drop you closer to the start line than regular buses do, and stay there while runners wait in comfort until their turn comes up to toe the starting line – half of this ticket’s cost goes toward your entry fee while half goes toward supporting Wineglass Scholarship Fund.

Virtual wineglass events have enabled more runners than usual to join this year’s Wineglass event, such as Jenn Shaddock from Corning who will compete in both an 8K this month and half marathon and 5K races in October – hoping that via virtuality she may complete either the Pinot or Riesling Challenges this year.

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