Run Albion kicks off its sixth season on April 28, marking its biggest year yet for local nonprofits and the community

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Now in its sixth year, Run Albion is as much about economic development as it is about competition.

Run Albion

“When you Run Albion, you know that you’re making an impact on the community."

Run Albion 2023 kicks off with Run the Rock on Thursday, April 28, marking the sixth year for the town’s flagship event that has grown as the community has prospered.

Decidedly the most hometown of Run Albion’s four races, Run the Rock takes runners, walkers, parents pushing strollers and dog owners through the heart of Albion College and past its famous painted rock that dates back to the graduating class of 1899.

“[Run the Rock] signals the start of race season in Albion, and this year we expect to draw more runners per race than ever before,” said Run Albion lead organizer Caroline Hurteau. “We were on pace for growth in all our 5Ks until the pandemic hit. Now, we’re back on track.”

Known for being held on Friday nights, each Run Albion 5K showcases the best the manufacturing town has to offer. In addition to the Run the Rock 5K, the History Hustle (on Friday, June 23) highlights the town’s unusual and quirky past. While the Forks 5K (on Friday, Sept. 16) takes competitors along the two branches of the Kalamazoo River to Albion’s Victory Park.

The series caps off with the Foundry Mile on the morning of the Albion’s Festival of the Forks. The premier of event of the Run Albion series attracts elite athletes from across the U.S. eager to beat the clock and each other in a one-mile speed run.

While the field is open to all runners, the Foundry Mile’s Elite Division features the fastest 10 men and the fastest 10 women based on their personal record submitted during registration. The first-place finishers take home $1,000 each.

“For elite competitors, the race becomes part of their regular training and racing schedule. Some of our athletes are former NCAA Champions and Olympians, Hurteau said.

Since its launch in 2017, Run Albion has become a signature event for the town. The series was created by Albion-based manufacturer Caster Concepts Inc. as part of the community’s revitalization efforts. Registration fees fund local nonprofits, providing funds for programs serving residents.

The evening races attract runners and visitors throughout Michigan to Albion’s charming downtown. Since the launch of the 5K series, the town has undergone a transformation. Its business district now features new apartments, a gourmet market, cigar lounge, brewery, bakery and a Courtyard by Marriott.

“When you Run Albion, you know that you’re making an impact on the community,” Hurteau said.

Race organizers expect the series to continue attracting visitors and runners alike with the announcement of plans to redevelop more than 20 buildings throughout its historic downtown, an investment of nearly $9.7 million.

“Run Albion is an economic vehicle for the town and a source of pride for the community,” said Caster Concepts President Bill Dobbins.

For more information on any of the Run Albion races, contact Caroline Hurteau at 517.945.4800 or

About Run Albion
Founded in 2017, Run Albion is a series of 5K races topped off by a competitive mile run through the town of Albion, Michigan. The annual race series attracts both amateur athletes and competitive runners eyeing bigger prizes. Visit

Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram at @RunAlbion.

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Patricia Maldonado
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