Well before today's explosion of long distance relays there was the Lake Winnipesaukee Fred Brown Relay. This relay, which circumnavigates the famous lake, is the one that started it all in New England, and still delivers a terrific team experience. In its 22nd year the Fred Brown Lake Winnipesaukee Relay is the grand-daddy of them all with eight beautiful, challenging legs over 65 scenic miles – you owe it to yourself and your friends to experience this grand New England tradition.
The Fred Brown Lake Winnipesaukee Relay offers the perfect mix of team spirit, scenery and challenge. Grab your friends or teammates and make the day trip or stay the weekend; and run this awesome relay with me!
I have personally run the Lake Winnipesaukee Relay at least a half dozen times and I love the race. I love the camaraderie of spending the day with a team of running friends. I love the soul-filling New Hampshire landscape. I love the grand vistas of the big lake, mountains and farms. I love the long relay legs on the lonely old New Hampshire rural roads. I love the challenge of the hills. And I love the joyous exhaustion of a worthy thing well done.
But why should YOU get a team together to run the Winnipesaukee Relay this year?
Team spirit – running a relay brings people together in the pure pursuit of a common task. This is not only team-building, this is friend-building. There are no deeper friendships than those forged in the shared and joyous victory over a worthy and difficult task. You will have so much fun with your new and old friends at Lake Winnipesaukee that you will feel that you have escaped the real world and gone off to summer camp with your friends. It is a runner's perfect friend-team activity.
Location and scenery – Lake Winnipesaukee is the largest lake in New Hampshire and a Mecca for winter and summer activities. This relay circumnavigates the lake, and around each corner is a post-card view. Whether it is the forest-covered granite Belknap and Sandwich Mountains shouldering the course or the grand expanse of the lake itself, the scenery is something you cannot fully appreciate unless you are there, on your feet and breathing it in; taking a foot-powered tour of this magical place.
The course – On this course there is something for everyone. There are difficult hilly legs, long downhill "runaway" legs and short easy legs. The course is designed to support a mixed team—that is, runners of various abilities. You don't have to be elite to run. Everyone is welcome and all runners have a leg for them.
Time of Year – The Race is held in September. This is perfect timing in the Lakes Region. The summer bustle of tourists has gone but the warm autumn days remain. The off-peak season will grant you bargains if you choose to stay. The leaves are just starting to turn and winter has yet to set in. If you're training for a fall marathon you can run one of the long legs for some on-course tuning and soak your legs in the cool lake water to recover.
One day or a weekend in paradise – The Race Director is Chris Gleason, and she leads a team that is top notch. Race organizer and former NMC President Jeff Gould likes to invite all participants to spend some time in the area and really enjoy this course. Lake Winnipesaukee is an easy day trip from Greater Boston. Runners can drive up in the morning, run their leg and get home in the afternoon. But for those looking to do it right and "waste" a weekend, there are plenty of places to eat, drink, be merry and sleep - all with your friends! It's a great venue to bring the family along as well with lots to do – so get them in the car and bring them with you for a short vacation.
Tradition – The Fred Brown Lake Winnipesaukee Relay is the oldest distance road relay in New England and one of the oldest in the country. This race is put on by the North Medford Club, which is in itself the second oldest running club in the U.S. The race honors a pioneer of our sport, club founder Fred Brown, who spent his long and fruitful life encouraging others to run. Be part of this wonderful tradition.