Half marathons are popping up everywhere you look and for good reason. They are the perfect distance. They require training, but it doesn't absorb too much of your life. And, you can walk normally the next day and explore the destination. Here is a list of my must-do half marathons in the Midwest (my neck of the woods). Some of these half marathons are tiny in size, some are hilly, but all of them will leave you with a lifetime memory.
Lincoln Presidential Half Marathon – Illinois
"Run where Lincoln walked" is the tagline of this Midwest half marathon. You and 1,000 other participants will run a scenic journey with the history of President Abraham Lincoln, past his home, law office, and the Old State Capitol where he delivered his "House Divided" speech. The course starts at the magnificent Lincoln's Presidential Library and Museum and you'll earn a giant penny finisher's medal.
Mini-Martian Half Marathon – Michigan
How often do you get the chance to run a half marathon and earn a huge Martian-head medal with an artistic decorated lanyard? Exactly my point—not very often; and this is the perfect reason to run this beautiful Michigan event. Compete against the Martians on a traffic-free (except for UFOs of course) and lightly rolling course. Come for the race, stay for the Martian watching.
Door County Half Marathon – Wisconsin
This is the perfect weekend get-away destination event. Rare in the half marathon world, this course is fully blocked off from any traffic. You'll roll through the hills of the beautiful Peninsula State Park on tranquil pine-tree lined roads and earn breathtaking views of Lake Michigan. Bring your camera and make it a mini-vacation.
Rite Aid Cleveland Half Marathon – Ohio
Cleveland rocks—and runs! Experience Cleveland as you run through the Rock 'n' Roll Capital of the World. This world-class event features one of the nation's flattest and fastest courses. There are live bands, fans that don't quit, and a colorful medal you'll be proud to hang with your collection of hits. It will leave you with that good karma feeling at the finish and a post-race party that rock and rolls!