BERKELEY -- A projected 8,000 runners will take to the city's streets at the first-ever Berkeley Half Marathon on Nov. 24, pounding a scenic 13.1-mile point-to-point course that will take them from Civic Center to the UC campus and down and around the waterfront.

The course, which will have entertainment, cheering stations, specially designed mile markers and surprises, concludes the finish line at Golden Gate Fields in Albany, where a post-race festival will have a DJ, runners' lounge, yoga and beer garden.

The event is a benefit for local causes and runners can designate one of 11 charities when registering, including the Berkeley Public Schools Fund, Berkeley Partners for Parks, and Berkeley Food and Housing Project.

"We've seen an incredible outpouring of support and excitement from the city of Berkeley since we announced our intent to hold this race," said Peter Nantell, the event's executive producer. "Everyone from Mayor Bates, to local artists and Cal Berkeley students have a hand in making this inaugural race an event to remember."

Already among the announced entrants is Berkeley resident Anna Bretan, who came in first in the women's field at the 2013 San Francisco Marathon and also won the Oakland Marathon in 2012.

There are options in addition to running the full course for entrants. The 10-mile Bearable race is offered, along with a 10K option.


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Registration for all events is open, and organizers say the half marathon is 60 percent full. Half Marathon registration is $85, the Bearable 10-mile race is $60, and the 10K race registration is $50. Teams of 15 or more can register as a group for a 15 percent discount.

Details and registration are online at berkeleyhalf.com.

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