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Helltown Half
Shenandoah Leaf Peeper 10K

18th Annual Festival of Leaves 5K

October 14, 2018

Click here for the participant email sent 10/10/18 full of race-day information!


This 4th-annual event, including the Helltown Half, Shenandoah Leaf Peeper 10K, and Festival of Leaves 5K all in one day, will have you tackling the hills in and around Front Royal during the 48th annual Festival of Leaves. With the Shenandoah Mountains and the South Fork of the Shenandoah River as the backdrop at the time of year when the radiant colors of the changing leaves are simply stunning, the miles will fade quickly under your feet as you knock out this two-loop 13.1-mile, single-loop 10K course, or picturesque 5K course.


A portion of the proceeds from all distances goes to support the Warren Heritage Society, which is the Front Royal/Warren County community's historical society, museum, and archives. It was established as a nonprofit organization in 1971, and the Warren Heritage Society has held the Shenandoah Valley's Festival of Leaves ever since.


Make a weekend of it! Warm up with the Festival of Leaves on Saturday, October 13, enjoying the parade and the historical displays, arts and craft vendors, live entertainment, a children’s area, tours of historic homes, living history interpretations, and food concessions on East Main Street. For more information about the festival, click here

he area has so much to offer, from running a fab race, to attending the Festival of Leaves, hiking or canoeing, dining at a local eatery, or visiting a winery. Visit Front Royal Tourism for tips on making the most of your visit, or check out our Activities Guide. It's chock full of places to eat and things to do while you're here!


Included with race entry:

  • Scenic running route through historic and beautiful Front Royal, including the campus of Randolph-Macon Academy

  • Finisher medal (every distance: 5K, 10K, and half)

  • BibChip timing and instant online results

  • Commemorative T-shirt (if you register within 10 days of the race you are not guaranteed a shirt, but you will still get a cool piece of swag!)

  • Free, (extremely) nearby parking

  • Easy access to start and finish line

  • Post-race slice of pie

  • Great prizes and awards for top 3 finishers in each category

Any good leaf peeper would like to keep up with the leaf report, of course. You can do so here.


Skyline High School
151 Skyline Vista DriveFront Royal, VA 22630
The start and finish area will be located in front of the football stadium.

Timing and Course Time Limits

The races will be timed using the MyLaps BibChip system. Start and finish times will be recorded and posted live to the race timing web site and will be available at the finish line through interactive screens at the timing trailer.  Timing chips are disposable, so feel free to keep it as a memento or toss it in the trash. All awards are based off gun time.


The MyLaps tracking timing chip is attached to your race bib. Your bib should be attached to your front and be clearly visible.


For the half-marathon you must be able to maintain a 14-minute mile pace.  In the event you do not make the cut off, you will be short-coursed to the 10K course.

Race results can be found here post-race.

Packet Pickup and Race-Day Schedule

OPTIONAL PACKET PICKUP: 9 am-noon: Saturday, October 13, Festival of Leaves, Space 308, Main Street, Front Royal 

Sunday, October 14, 2018

6:15 am: Packet pickup opens at the start/finish area in the Skyline High School parking lot in front of the football stadium (151 Skyline Vista Drive, Front Royal, VA 22630)

7:15 am: Optional yoga warmup at the start area with Ruby Yoga

7:30 am: Half start

7:35 am: 10K start

7:45 am: 5K starts

8:15 am: Post-race pie sliced and ready for finishers

8:30 am: "Rolling awards" begin. Once you cross the finish line, swing by the timing trailer for a print out of your results. We don't want to hold you up, so if you placed 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in your category, you can pick up your award and get your photo taken on the podium!

10:15 am: Rest and recover :)

Who Is Racing?

Click here to check out the competition!


Age group awards will be presented 3 deep in all divisions, for all races, for male and female categories: Under 16, 16-19,20-29,30-39,40-49,50+. Awards are based on gun time.


Helltown Half Marathon

  • $50 - Opening Registration  (until 7/23/2018)

  • $60 - Super Early Registration (until 8/20/2018)

  • $70 - Early Registration (until 9/17/2018)

  • $80 - Regular Registration (until 10/1/2018)

  • $90 - Late Registration (until 10/13/2018)

  • $100 - On site

Shenandoah Leaf Peeper 10K

  • $45 - Opening Registration (until 7/23/2018)

  • $50 - Super Early Registration (until 8/20/2018)

  • $55 - Early Registration (until 9/17/2018)

  • $60 - Regular Registration (until 10/1/2018)

  • $65 - Late Registration (until 10/13/2018)

  • $75 - On site

Festival of Leaves 5K

  • $20 - Opening Registration (until 7/23/2018)

  • $25 - Super Early Registration (until 8/20/2018)

  • $30 - Early Registration (until 9/17/2018)

  • $35 - Regular Registration (until 10/1/2018)

  • $40 - Late Registration (until 10/13/2018)

  • $45 - On site

SPECIAL YOUTH PRICING: All participants age 16 and younger can race any distance for $20. When you enter an applicable birth date at the registration page, you will see a "Special Pricing" option to click. (No other discounts can be applied.)

(The registration platform charges a small fee in addition to the entry fee for online registration)

Course Maps

Click here for the Half and 10K course maps.

Click here for the 5K course map.

We will have three aid stations for the half: at the lap point, at the back gate at RMA on Main Street, and at  Eastham Park.


We'll have a photographer on hand to capture great shots of you on course. If you'd like to view or purchase the photos from the 2016 events, we're just gonna leaf this picture gallery link right here... Bushnell Photography's shots are fab and the prices are great. Enjoy!

Lodging & Things to Do

Looking for things to do or a place to eat while you are in town? Check out our Activities Guide to Front Royal!


AirBnBs are always fun, and there are so many beautiful options in the area. 


Skyline Ranch Resort: 751 Mountain Road, Front Royal, VA 22630, Packet pickup and pre-race meeting location. Accommodations include chalets ($125, up to 6 people), cabins ($85, up to 6 people), and RVs ($75, up to 4 people). Visit the website or call 540-635-4169 ext.1


Shenandoah River State Park (cabins, camping, RVs), 350 Daughter of Stars Dr. Bentonville, VA 22610, (540) 622-6840


"Cabbin" at the Mountain Home B&B - 3471 Remount Road, Front Royal. $20 per bed (shared room, like a hostel) includes fresh linens, shower, breakfast, and other things they provide to their usual guests (Appalachian Trail hikers). Contact them directly for the $20 price at


Quality Inn -  10 S Commerce Ave Front Royal, VA 22630, (540) 635-3161

Super8 - 111 South Street, Front Royal, VA 22630, (540) 636-4888

Camping and RVs:

Low Water Bridge Campground (RV hookups and tent camping), 192 Panhandle Rd, Bentonville, VA 22610 (just across the river from the start/finish line), (540) 635-7277

Shenandoah River State Park (cabins, camping, RVs), 350 Daughter of Stars Drive Bentonville, VA 22610, (540) 622-6840

Skyline Ranch Resort, 751 Mountain Road, Front Royal, VA 22630, (540) 635-4169, $40 for RV site


The heart of a great event is its volunteers. If you have a passion for helping out and are interested in volunteering for the Shenandoah Leaf Peeper, we'd love to have you join the fun!  We have options for individuals, groups and families.  Donations to charities  are available.  Looking to complete service hours?  We can help you out with that too. Click here to choose your volunteer task!


  • Entry fees are nonrefundable. No exceptions. (But see “Transfers” below.)

  • Once we receive and accept your entry, you will not receive a refund if you cannot participate and you may not transfer your entry fee to future races. (But see “Transfers” below.)

  • You must be at least 12 years old to participate in the half-marathon and 10K.

  • You must be in good health and physically prepared to take on the challenge of a half-marathon.

  • You must show photo ID to receive your race number.

  • Race numbers are required to participate.

  • No coaches, bikes, in-line skates, skateboards, baby joggers, strollers, or dogs will be allowed on the half-marathon and 10K course. Strollers are allowed on the 5K course.

  • Participants are permitted to wear earbuds or headphones, but for safety reasons, they are not recommended.

Cancellations and Transfer Policy

Click here for information.

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