Ernest Hemingway’s sporting lifestyle is to inspire athletes on land and water in Key West, the island where the legendary writer lived during the 1930s. The Hemingway 5k Sunset Run/Walk and Paddleboard Race are to challenge competitors in a new individual format Thursday through Sunday, July 23-26.

“Due to the worldwide COVID-19 situation we obviously can’t have any large gatherings, but there’s no reason not to compete in the Hemingway 5k and paddleboard race,” said event founder and coordinator Barbara Wright.

According to Wright, athletes planning to be in Key West for the events can participate in either or both of them individually, using the free RaceJoy app to track their progress and submit their results. Racers can choose from three 5k run courses and two paddleboard courses, completing them any time during the Thursday-to-Sunday race weekend. 

Those who can’t be in Key West can participate from their hometowns by using RaceJoy.

The competitions are part of Key West’s annual Hemingway Days, a celebration of the author’s vigorous life and literary talent set for July 21-26. 

On-the-water athletes can enjoy the Lazy Dog Paddleboard Race, featuring two approximately 3-mile Atlantic Ocean courses that offer varying vistas and challenges.

For those who prefer land-based competition, the 5k run/walk features two courses in Key West’s colorful Old Town district and one that takes runners along the island’s Atlantic Ocean shore.

Organizers are planning other activities including a Hemingway Trivia Hunt, rum tasting and paddling opportunities for competitors.

Interested participants can register online at keywesthalfmarathon.com. All registrants are to receive a race T-shirt and bib, cooling gaiter wrap and participant medal by mail.

The registration fee is $50 per person for either race or $60 for both races. Athletes are to follow local health directives, wear facial coverings when required and take personal responsibility to minimize the potential spread of COVID-19.Event information and schedule: keywesthalfmarathon.com or 305-240-0727

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