50th Annual Zena Road Runs

Sun February 18, 2018 Directions
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor
Race Sponsor

The Willamette Valley Road Runners Club (WVRR) is a member of the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA). This race is fully insured and we promise a safe and exciting race day.  Read more about WVRR and what we do to support running events and high schools in the Willamette Valley.  This event will help fund the West Salem High School Cross Country and Track & Field Programs.

In Memory of Chuck Bowles, Founder of Zena Road Runs

A Bit of History:

In 1969, a number of runners - mostly Willamette University Cross Country and Track runners - lined up for the first annual Zena Road Run at the corner of Zena Road and Spring Valley Road. Head Coach, Dr. Charles J. Bowles (Chuck), wanted to create an event that would test his student-athletes and provide a road race for the local running community.

There was a race fee - day of race registration only: Toss a quarter - yes, $0.25 - in a coffee can and line up. There was official timing: Coach Bowles hand-held analog stopwatch recorded every runner's time. There were official results: Hand-written on a clipboard and typed up later at Willamette University. Results were mailed out to all finishers. First class postage was only $.06, so the race fee covered it easily.

A few things have changed in the last 50 years. Well . . . more than a few things. These hills were covered more in Christmas Tree farms back then. There were no vineyards. But this race and it's 9-Mile+ loop have endured. It remains a challenge to any runners willing to give it their best effort.

Chuck lived in the area. Much of the current route was a common "Sunday morning training run" during the off-season for his athletes. The training runs always finished with a big breakfast cooked up and served by Chuck and his wife, Barbara, at their home. Dr. Bowles ran this route himself for many years and loved this area. Dr. Charles Bowles passed away on December 30, 2005, but his name and memory will be forever connected to the Zena Road Runs.


All three events [9.5 Mile, 6 mile, and 3 mile] are SOLD OUT!

The capacity of the event facility will not accommodate more participants. Thank you for registering early.  

Sunday February 18, 2018
10:00am start for all 3 races

St. Innocent Winery - Located on Zena Rd

Important Details:
No Dogs or Strollers allowed - For Safety Reasons.

Packet Pickup Begins at 8:30am.  No Day of Race Registration.

All Race Courses close at 12:00 PM.  You must maintain an average pace of 12:40 per mile to complete the 9.5 Mile Run.


Club Member Discounts

All current members of the Willamette Valley Road Runners Club will save $5.00 on their entry fee.  Join WVRR or Renew today!

Heart of the Valley Runners (Corvallis) and Team GFR Training Plan Members also receive $5.00 off their registrations. Joining a club or training plan saves you $$$.

**NEW** Age Based Discounts

All Participants 19 and Under receive a $5.00 break on pricing! Club Members 19 and Under save $5.00 more!


St. Innocent Winery and Zenith Vineyards - 5657 Zena Road NW - Salem, OR 97304
PARKING and Car Pooling - Very Important!
Roadside parking is prohibited on Zena Road.  There are only two options for parking:
  1. First-come, first-served parking in the St Innocent/Zenith Vineyards parking lot (maximum 110 vehicles).
  2. Overflow parking at Noble Mountain Tree Farm on Bethel Heights Rd, 3 miles away.  Parking area pictured below. Shuttle vans provided.

We encourage carpooling.  When the St Innocent/Zenith parking reaches capacity, all vehicles will be directed to park 3 miles away (pictured below). 

Please plan accordingly!  The race must begin on time and packet pickup will close promptly at 9:45am.  Budget your time wisely.


Commemorative Stemless Wine Glass with Entry!
All race participants and volunteers receive this unique 11.5 ounce stemless wine glass.

You can't hang it on a hook or around your neck. But you can use it all year, consume any beverage you like, and toast the oldest race in Oregon!

2018 T-Shirt Design (optional at additional cost)
The 50th Annual Zena Road Runs design will be a collectors item!  Long-Sleeve unisex technical fabric race tee.  Size range: XS-XXL. 

Please Note:  Race tees are not included in race price.  Cost: $22.00 each.  Purchase is optional during registration signup.  

50th Annual Zena Road Runs EXCLUSIVE!

Through a special arrangement provided by St. Innocent Winery and Zenith Vineyards, we will use this phenomenal indoor banquet hall for both pre-race and post-race activities. 


Packet Pickup and a warm, dry place to stretch out before the race.  PLEASE NOTE:  There is a capacity of 350 total participants across the three distances.  IF we reach capacity before race day, there will be NO Day of Race Registration.  Register early to save your spot!

  • Enjoy a complimentary 5-ounce pour of St Innocent Wine (for those over 21 who wish to partake).
  • Sparkling Cider option provided as well.
  • Vegan food options provided by Chickpea Gluten Free Kitchen, Bernard Malherbe's newest restaurant in west Salem.
  • Fresh fruit from Roth's Fresh Markets.
  • Free samples and snacks from KIND.
  • BIG Screen slide show of past Zena Road Runs.
  • Door Prizes!
  • Age Group Awards for all three races!
  • Surprise guests and stories from past Zena Road Runs.
  • Win a coffee can of quarters - as we re-enact the original entry fee + registration process!

The Willamette Valley Road Runners Club thanks Run Oregon for the glowing race preview of the 2018 Zena Road Runs.  Oregon's Oldest Race!

Race Website

Additional race information can be found at http://wvroadrunners.org/zena.html.

Race Contact Info

If you have any questions about this race, click the button below.


St. Innocent Winery and Zenith Vineyards - 5657 Zena Road NW - Salem, OR 97304


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