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Get set for the city’s oldest race, the Chattanooga Chase

Lace up your sneakers, the Chattanooga Chase, the Scenic City’s oldest active competitive race is set to return on Memorial Day.

A group of folks running on a road in the Riverview neighborhod

Get ready for running and community fun.

The Chattanooga Chase will return for its 57th loop around the Riverview neighborhood on Memorial Day. Don’t run towards the finish line before we can give you all the need-to-knows.

This road race is Chattanooga’s oldest, getting its start in 1968, and it still takes place on the original course. Owner of Fast Break Athletics Alan Outlaw said that the shop took over organizing the race in 2016 after working with the Chattanooga Track Club.

A newspaper clipping of the Chattanooga Chase in 1980.

Attendance in the ‘80s was over 1,000 people — Outlaw said the numbers dipped over the years, but in 2023 they welcomed 1,200 folks.

Photo by NOOGAtoday

“I wanted to make it as authentic and nostalgic as running was in the ‘70s,” said Outlaw.

Outlaw added that he wanted to engage the community by adding in fun for those not running. You can expect art activation with local artist Olivia Reckert, music, local vendors, activities for the kiddos, and more.

Now for the runners, let’s get into what you can expect.

Training for the terrain

  • 8K race | Windy, hilly open path (meaning passing cars may be present) that goes through the Riverview neighborhood — bonus: Two runners will be named King + Queen of Minnekahda for reaching the top of this road first.
  • One-mile race | Fairly flat course around the neighborhood adjacent to the Chattanooga Golf and Country Club — proceeds from this race benefit Siskin Children’s Institute.

Fun fact: The race consists of runners ages 3-95.

Race Day schedule

Participants and viewers will meet up at Riverview Park (1857 Riverview Rd.) on Monday, May 27.

  • 6:30-7:30 a.m. | Packet pickup + registration
  • 8 a.m. | 8K race starts
  • 9:30 a.m. | 8K awards
  • 10 a.m. | Extra Mile for Siskin, First Heat (one-mile) + TuckerBuild Block Party kickoff
  • 10:40 a.m. | Extra Mile for Siskin + Second Heat (one-mile)
  • 11:15 a.m. | One-mile awards

Bonus: There will be an Early Packet Pickup Party at Fastbreak Athletics on Sunday, May 26 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Folks gathering in the block party after the Chattanooga Chase

“It’s not just check in, check out,” said Outlaw. “We want to encourage runners to interactive with others along the way.”

Pro tips from an insider

In the spirit of friendly competition, Outlaw gave us some helpful tips for navigating the day.

  • Parking will be available at Girls Preparatory School this year or street-side around the area — carpool and arrive early for a spot.
  • Get acquainted with the course by attending a preview run on Wednesday, May 15 at 6 p.m.
  • Sign up early to make sure you secure your t-shirt before the big day.

“It truly is a Chattanooga original,” Outlaw said. “It’s something like MoonPie, Coca-Cola, it’s as original in our history as any of those things.”
Think you’re now ready and set for the races? Register online or sign up to volunteer.

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