Runners for this year’s 300 Oaks Road Race are in for some different scenery.

Both the 5K and 10K runs  will have different routes from the previous year, said Beth Stevens, executive director of the Greenwood-Leflore County Chamber of Commerce, the organization that hosts the event.

The 39th annual 300 Oaks Road Race is scheduled for Saturday morning, Sept. 21.

“Every few years we take a look at the route” and decide to reroute the races, Stevens said. “Change is good sometimes.”

Both the 5K and 10K races will begin and end at the boat landing near the city arboretum, also known as the park between Veterans and Keesler bridges.

Last year’s 10K and 5K races began on West President Avenue and concluded on Keesler Bridge.

This year’s 5K will exit the boat landing, make a right onto East Claiborne and a left onto Weightman Street and continue onto Azalea Street, making a left on McArthur Avenue.

Racers will continue running east on McArthur to when it becomes Rosemary Lane and then take a left to run south on Grand Boulevard. Runners will then make a left onto East Claiborne to return to the boat landing.

This year’s 10K race follows the route of the 5K race for the first 3 miles. However, instead of turning left onto East Claiborne from Grand Boulevard, runners will continuing racing south, crossing Keesler Bridge and making a left onto East Front Street.

Runners will then travel south on Main Street until they reach Rail Spike Park, making a right to run along the trail until they reach Parkway Avenue.

From Parkway, runners will make a left onto Leflore Avenue, then a right onto Seventh Street, using Strong Avenue and Chambers Street to get onto River Road.

From River Road, runners will race all the way east until they once again use Keesler Bridge to go north and ultimately make their way back to the boat landing.

Though this year’s 10K race incorporates downtown Greenwood, a first for 300 Oaks, Stevens said, “you’ll still get the shady streets and the neighborhoods” and, of course, the flat Delta terrain.

There will still be a post-race party, which will be held in the boat landing area.

Both the 5K and 10K runs will also start earlier in an effort to attract those who plan to attend the University of Mississippi or Mississippi State University football games, Stevens said.

The 10K run will start at 7:30 a.m. The 5K run will start at 7:45 a.m. The 5K walk will start at 8 a.m.

This year’s 1-mile fun run, designated for kids, will retain the same route as last year’s. It will start and conclude on Keesler Bridge, with runners racing north on Grand Boulevard and making a U-turn to return to the bridge.

The fun run will start after the conclusion of the 10K and 5K races, Stevens said, which usually happens around 9 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.

As of Tuesday, 264 people had registered for one of the four races.

Those still interested in registering can do so online before midnight  Sept. 19 or by mail, which needs to be postmarked by Sept. 17. To register online or learn more information about the race routes, go to 300oaks.racesonline.com/home.

Contact Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com.

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