Jacksonville USO Armed Forces Half Marathon & Freedom 5K

Saturday, October 16, 2021 • Jacksonville, FL • Course Map

One of this city’s largest running events, the Jacksonville USO Armed Forces Half Marathon (known before 2019 as the Marine Corps Half Marathon) and unfolds along one of its most scenic waterfront stretches, with a course that runs almost entirely through the neighborhoods and city blocks along the St. John’s River.


With both races open to both runners and walkers, the event welcomed more than 3,000 runners and walkers at its fall 2016 running, including just over 2,000 finishers in the half marathon portion of the event and just over 1,000 runners in the 5K.

A mostly fast and flat race that takes place through the city streets of Jacksonville, runners begin both the 13.1-mile half marathon and the 5K at the same starting line, near the Riverfront Plaza. Longtime locals may recognize this as the former Jacksonville Landing and the site of the annual University of Georgia-University of Florida football game, whose pregame tailgating festivities have been called “the world’s largest cocktail party.”

From the starting line on Hogan and Water Street, the out-and-back route begins with the biggest change in elevation, the run over the bridge to Friendship Park.

Once they’re over the bridge, runners then make the turn and head back over to the north side of the river via the Acosta Bridge, and then turn onto Riverside Avenue, which they follow for the next couple of miles along the St. John’s River. The course makes a brief detour around Willow Branch Park before turning onto St. John’s Avenue.

Runners then follow St. John’s all the way down to Boone Park, where they turn right on Van Wert Ave, then left onto Herschel St before meeting up with Pine Grove Avenue, turning right there, runners will take Glendale St before turning left onto Jean Street for the stretch of the course that runs past Fishweir Park.

The runners and walkers then turn again on Yukon Street, marking the half-way point in the race that takes them to Charon Rd before bringing runners around back to St. John’s Avenue, and the trek back toward the finish line in reverse along the course they’ve just run.

The finish line features a forgiving, refreshing way to complete the race, as participants run the last stretch of the race and cross the finish line on the grassy meadows of Metropolitan Park.

Organized to honor the United States Marine Corps and the entire United States military, the race also helps to raise money for the Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund, which donates money for college scholarships for the children of soldiers killed in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.


Race Weather & Climate

Set in Florida’s northeast corner just south of the Florida-Georgia border, about a two-hour drive south of Savannah (Ga.), Jacksonville typically sees October temperatures that average between 63°F and 79°F, while rainfall totals average 3.3 inches for the month.

On the day of the race (Oct. 16), the average low is 63°F and the average high is 79°F.

Past Results

Course Map

See the race route map for the Jacksonville USO Armed Forces Half Marathon here.

Starting Time

7:00 AM

Fees

  • $50 – $65 for the half marathon
  • $25 – $40 for the 5K
  • active duty discounts available

Registration

To reserve your spot in the 2021 running of Florida’s Jacksonville USO Armed Forces Half Marathon, register online at RaceRoster.com here.

Official Race Website

jaxusohalfmarathon.com

Facebook Conversations

Ever run in the Jacksonville USO Armed Forces Half Marathon race? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments below.

See more races in: October, Florida

1 comment… add one
  • ROYCE SCOTT August 29, 2019, 1:10 pm

    When I register for this race, what all is included? Shirt? Medal at the end of the race ?

    Reply

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