Take that runner’s high to the top at the Pleasure Island Bridge Half Marathon in Port Arthur, Texas. On November 4, this steep challenge takes runners 138 feet above the Sabine-Neches canal for that can’t-be-beat high.
This year, the run honors the volunteer spirit and selflessness of southeast Texans as they recover from Hurricane Harvey’s floods. “The area running community pitched in to help those in need, and that character personifies strength in the volunteer spirit," said Richard James III, the run’s director.
Runners will enjoy Port Arthur’s scenic coastal views and a view of Sabine Lake from the top of the bridge, a vista that includes a glimpse of Louisiana. After the run enjoy five miles of natural beach at Sea Rim State Park, where gulf meets marsh. Cool off with a dip in the Gulf of Mexico and recharge on three paddle trails through the marsh unit. Rent a kayak or bring your own.
Birders with an eye for fall migration will want to head to Sabine Woods sanctuary, just a few miles away from Sea Rim.
Then, refuel with Cajun favorites, such as crawfish, gumbo and boudain, at Port Arthur’s restaurants.
Pleasure Island Bridge Half Marathon Fun Facts:
Port Arthur's Pleasure Island, an 18.5-mile-long, man made body of land, extends from the mouth of the Neches River on the northwest to the Sabine Causeway on the southeast, and is surrounded by Sabine Lake and the Sabine Neches Intracoastal Waterway.
Half Marathon and 10K participants take on the challenge of running over the MLK Jr. bridge, which is 5,000 feet long and 138 feet above the Sabine-Neches Canal. Two-mile runners enjoy the speed of a flat, fast course.
Sports Society for American Health, the run’s organizer, is a nonprofit organization founded in 2000. It hosts professionally sanctioned races and athletic events to improve the community with a special focus on children’s health and education.