42nd Annual Hair of the Dog Run New Year’s Day!


Join the YMCA of Greater Spartanburg’s Annual Hair of the Dog Run and start your New Year off right. We will cheers to our fitness success with fellowship and breakfast after a one mile fun run, 5K, or 10K walk, jog, stroll, or run. The Hair of the Dog Run is not exactly a race; instead, HOD is a community event sponsored by local Spartanburg businesses and residents who share a sense of camaraderie and enjoy starting a new year on a sturdy, moving foot, together!

If you are interested in volunteering or getting involved, please contact Monica McKinley at (864) 585-0306 or email her at [email protected]. Course maps and details are listed below. 

Come be a part of the pack on New Year’s Day!

Dogs on leashes are welcome.

Hair of the Dog History

Fun Fact: Hair of the Dog is our community’s oldest running event! In the early 1980s, the run scene in Spartanburg revolved around a small running club, the StrYders, which was connected to the Spartanburg YMCA. As luck had it, (or maybe it was the infamous runner’s high), the idea for a fun run on New Year’s Day was incubated during a StrYders sneaker session. Four dozen radical red shirts were ordered for the first event. The organizers fretted that would be waaaaay too many, but when January 1st motored around so did 75 runners. Another shirt order was eagerly placed, and a new tradition was born.

The HOD Course has changed over the years, as has the breakfast menu. Shoney’s big fat yeast rolls became stacks of pancakes cooked at the Pine Street Y by Spartan Foods, and in recent years, breakfast has been planned and prepared by Burg foodie and personal chef, Kim Mace. The event t-shirts have cycled through layers of colors and have varied from long-sleeved cotton shirts to sweatshirts, to hoodies, to short-sleeved t-shirts, and most recently, to long-sleeved tech shirts. Each year, the first 100 signups will receive a pair of commemorative Hair of the Dog socks alongside the event t-shirt. 

The run has held slow runners, fast runners, sloggers, stroller rollers, walkers, walk and talkers, old runners, young runners, first time runners, restarting runners, families, friends, and fur-friends on leashes trotting or walking beside their bffs. There was even an Olympian one year! The weather has stuck to its Southern roots with 80 degree sunny days, 17 degree icy days, rain, snow, and wind. But every year, the event builds bridges to connect people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities to ring in the New Year together with smiles on their faces and glowing auras of happiness.

HOD begins at 9 am, January 1st each year at the Thomas E. Hannah Family YMCA. Proceeds benefit the YMCA’s Annual Campaign which provides many Sparkle City families, children, and seniors financial assistance, so they can stay healthy in spirit, mind and body at an affordable rate.

Presented by Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System