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Santa’s Showdown

December 5 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm


Santas Showdown 5K
The second Santa’s Showdown will take place as a live, in-person event on Saturday, December 5 at Recreation Park in East Asheville. This unique 5K will pit runners representing Elves and Reindeer against each other to establish North Pole supremacy for the coming year.

This year’s race has been designed to provide a safe atmosphere for all involved. Runners/walkers can choose a race start between 9:00 and 11:00 AM where no more than 20 people will start at one time.

Race Cap: The event is limited to 180 participants

Virtual Option – For those not wanting to participate in a live event, we have a virtual option where you can run a 5K course of your choosing anytime between November 28 and 12:00 PM on December 5.


December 5
9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Event Category:


Asheville Recreation Park
65 Gashes Creek Rd
Asheville, NC 28805 United States
+ Google Map

Race Information

Entry Fees

Live & Virtual

Early Registration (October 30-November 15): Adults-$30, Youth (12 & Under)-$10

Late Registration (November 16-December 3): Adults-$35, Youth (12 & Under)-$10

Packet Pickup/Late Registration

There is no on-site registration. Everyone must pre-register online on or before Thursday, December 3 at 9:00 PM.

Packet Pickup Schedule
Friday, December 4, 4:30-6:00 PM – Industries for the Blind (240 Sardis Road) – This will be a drive-through process where you can safely stay in your cars to receive your packets. Please wear a face covering when you reach the pickup zone.

Saturday, December 5, 8:00-10:45 AM – Asheville Recreation Park

Virtual runners will have their shirts and swag mailed to them.


The 5K course will start and finish at Recreation Park in East Asheville and feature a fast out-and-back on Azalea Road past the JBL Soccer complex and under the Blue Ridge Parkway.

There will not be an aid station on the course this year. Please plan on being self-sufficient.

Course Map/Elevation Chart

Virtual Runners: Choose your own 5K course.  In order to be included in the results, it must be exactly 3.1 miles.  Distances will be verified with the results you submit via a Strava link.

Additional Info.

In order to comply with North Carolina Phase 3 guidelines, groups of 20 or fewer runners/walkers will start every 15 minutes between 9:00 and 11:00 AM. You may choose your start time during the registration process. Those starting in the 11:00 AM group must finish the course by 11:30 AM.

Each runner will receive a special, short-sleeve, cotton race shirt to mark the occasion and either an Elf or Reindeer headband.

In order to provide a racing opportunity for as many people as possible, spectators or guests will not be permitted at this time.

You will be randomly assigned to be either an Elf or Reindeer.

Portable toilets will be located near the start/finish line with hand sanitizer

• No on-site registration – all runners must enter register online by Thursday, December 3 at 9:00 PM
• No spectators allowed under North Carolina Phase 3
• If you are feeling any COVID-19 symptoms, please stay home and contact your physician.
• Face coverings must be worn from the time you leave the parking area until you start the race.
• Pursuant to Governor Cooper’s Executive order of November 23, 2020, face coverings must be worn anytime you are within six feet of someone who does not reside in your household.
• There will not be an aid station on the course this year. Please plan on being self-sufficient.
• Results will only be posted online. We will provide a link for live results with your race week information and will have a QR code posted near the timing tent.
• Awards will be announced via social media after the event is completed – not on site. Winners will be notified by email on how they can receive their awards.

Virtual runners must follow the COVID-19 guidelines in place in your community at the time of your run.

Post Race

After you finish the race, bottled water and snacks will be waiting for you at the finish line. In order to keep our crowds at the allowed limit, we ask you proceed to your cars after you are finished.


The top 10 male and female Elves and Reindeers will receive awards. We will not have an on-site awards ceremony. All winners will receive their awards by mail.


Your race bib contains a timing chip that will start when you cross the timing mat at the start line and end when you cross the finish line. Please do not crinkle your bib.

Please wear your race bib on your front so it is visible when you cross both the start and finish lines.


We love dogs but due to the current circumstances, they will not be allowed at this year’s event.


The principle parking area is just behind and to the west of the Recreation Park and Pool. Follow the directions of the volunteers in orange vests. Please do not park at the WNC Nature Center.

Cancellations & Transfers

Should the event be cancelled due to COVID-19 related issues, IFB Solutions will refund all registered participants.  Otherwise, the following cancellation policies apply:

If the event is NOT sold out, a discount code for 50% of your race registration fee will be offered until 7 days days prior to the race date. No discounts codes will be given within 7 days days before the event, if the event is not sold out.

If the event IS sold out, a discount code for 100% of your race registration fee will be offered until 5 days days prior to the race date. No discounts codes will be given within 5 days days before the event, if the event is sold out.

Partial discount codes are only available for cancellations of completed registrations. A registration is considered incomplete if payment was mailed in and has not yet been received.

Discount codes can be used to register for the 2022 event. This policy only applies to the Santa’s Showdown.  Discount codes from the previous year may not be used for any other events owned or managed by Glory Hound Events or its partnerships.

Transfers of entries between participants will be accepted through November 30 by completing and submitting this Transfer Form. This is the only way transfers or the selling of bibs between participants will be allowed. Anyone who is discovered to have purchased or accepted another person’s bib without submitting this form will be disqualified and banned from future races.


We will not post results at the finish area. Results will be posted on the race page by Saturday afternoon.

Virtual Runners – Submit your results using THIS FORM on or before 12:00 PM Saturday, December.  You must include a verifiable Strava link showing the distance and time of your run.  Any distances less or more than 3.1 miles will not be considered for the overall results and awards.


Volunteers are needed for Set-Up, Parking, Course Marshals, Food & Drink and Take-Down.  This event will not happen without a great group of volunteers.  To be one, email Emily Lancucki at elancucki@ifbsolutions.org

Please email general race questions to greg@gloryhoundevents.com