Let's clear up two misconceptions right now. The Big Sur Half Marathon doesn't take place in Big Sur, and there are far more events involved than the titular half-marathon.
The full name of the event is the Big Sur Half Marathon on Monterey Bay, referring to both its sister event, the Big Sur International Marathon, and to its physical location, largely along the shores of Monterey and Pacific Grove. And though the invariably sold-out Half Marathon on Sunday, November 8th is the crowning event of the weekend, there are many other activities surrounding it.
The Health and Fitness Expo at the Monterey Conference Center is free! Over 40 vendors will be on hand showing and selling the latest in fitness and health-related products and gear. Participants in the weekend's races can pick up their bib numbers and other event goodies. Free and open to the public on Friday, November 6th from 12pm to 6pm and Saturday, November 7th from 9am to 6pm.
Not quite ready for a half-marathon? You can still run - or even walk - in the all new Pacific Grove Lighthouse 5K on Saturday, November 7th. This event, with a course just over three miles long, showcases the downtown and scenic coastline of Pacific Grove and is open to anyone in good health ages 5 and up. Register at the official web site.
Children can also participate in the By the Bay 3K, also on Saturday. Participants in this fun run will get a T-shirt and a finisher's medallion. There will also be activities for children before and after the race. Register at the official web site.
The main event of the weekend, the Big Sur Half Marathon on Monterey Bay takes runners through historic downtown Monterey, over to Cannery Row, down the shore of Monterey Bay, into downtown Pacific Grove, and back along the coast to the grand finish at Custom House Plaza, Monterey State Historic Park. Spectators can watch from anywhere along the course. Register at the official web site.