While cool race swag might not be the primary motivator for signing up for a race, it doesn't hurt. Cheap cotton race T-shirts, which are nearly extinct, have been replaced by a new class of gear, food and finish-line perks. We went in search of some of the coolest and most creative race swag around to show you what you might be missing.
Nike Women's Half MarathonSan Francisco, California 1 of 11
There's a reason nearly 25,000 women take to the streets of San Francisco every October to run this half marathon: Bling. Instead of a finisher's medal, each participant receives a custom-made Tiffany necklace to commemorate the feat. Now that's something that will really give you bragging rights.
Feaster Five Thanksgiving Day Road RaceAndover, Massachusetts 2 of 11
What has become a holiday tradition for many locals, the Feaster 5K and 5-mile events offer not only a long-sleeved technical shirt to all participants, but also an apple pie. A whopping 9,000 pies await runners at the finish line each year, helping to complete a whole lot of Thanksgiving feasts.
Hershey Half MarathonHershey, Pennsylvania 3 of 11
If you have a sweet tooth, this is the race for you. In addition to a shirt and finisher's medal, runners receive a bag full of sweet goodies and two tickets to Hersheypark in the Dark. The best part: you can indulge after the race in all the chocolatey goodness without the guilt.
Sinister 7 UltraCrownsnest Pass, Alberta, Canada 4 of 11
You'll need a drink after this 100-mile journey through Alberta's Rocky Mountains. For finishers of the Sinister 7 Ultra, the event awards runners a customized bottle of cabernet-merlot with bib number, name and finishing time printed on the label.
Richmond MarathonRichmond, Virginia 5 of 11
Dubbed "America's Friendliest Marathon," this November race takes runners through the scenic and historic neighborhoods of Richmond before finishing in the heart of downtown. True to its name and downhome ethos, every finisher receives a shirt, medal and a fleece blanket to cozy up and ward off the post-race chills.
Esprit de SheMultiple Locations 6 of 11
The Esprit de She events provide active ladies with the opportunity for a fun night out. In addition to custom MPG tanks, finishers are given two complimentary drink tickets, a GoVino wine glass and access to the best post-race bubbly bar and tapas in town.
Leadville 100Leadville, Colorado 7 of 11
Not for the faint of heart, the Leadville 100 takes runners on a 100-mile journey through the rugged Colorado Rockies. When runners get weary, it's the famous finisher's belt buckle that drives many to the line. Those who finish under 25 hours receive a large silver and gold trophy buckle, while those who finish under 30 hours receive a smaller version.
Ragnar Trail RelaysMultiple Locations 8 of 11
Ragnar is known for great swag bags and festive finish-line celebrations, but it's their medal that garners the most attention. Finishers at any of Ragner's 2015 trail series races will receive a medal that doubles as a multi-tool. This handy little prize has it all, including a can opener, bottle opener, small saw and multiple wrenches.
Get Lucky 7KMinneapolis, Minnesota 9 of 11
Since T-shirt appropriate days are few and far between in Minneapolis around the St. Patrick's Day holiday, the Get Lucky 7K supplies all runners with festive hoodies each year. The full zip performance "Get Lucky" hoodie is something a runner can wear all year with pride.
Phillies Charities 5KPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania 10 of 11
For baseball fans, the Phillies Charities 5K swag can't be beat. Not only do runners get a long-sleeved technical shirt and finisher medal, they also receive a voucher good for two tickets to a Phillies game—peanuts and crackerjacks not included.