Plenty of Central Texas summer events to choose from…

It took a little longer than usual for the summer heat blast to arrive, but it’s here. And if you think that means no races on the calendar, think again. There’s always something happening in the Central Texas Area. Here are some events to keep an eye on.

Want to run a 5K and cool off at the same time? How about the Dos Rios 5K Splash and Dash, Saturday, June 17 at 8:00 a.m. in New Braunfels at Cypress Bend Park. Competitors can enjoy two beautiful rivers and three parks along the course. There are two options on the 5K: You can just run the roads or for an additional challenge you can run the roads and tube through the chute. Awards are given for each category of race. The race starts at Cypress Bend Park and goes to Prince Solms Park and then back to Cypress Bend Park. For the chute challenge, when runners get to Prince Solms park they’ll grab a tube and float the river through the tube chute before continuing the rest of their run. Tubes are provided by the city of New Braunfels for the Chute Challenge. (You do not need to provide your own). All entries receive a day pass to the tube chute!

Here’s a longtime Central Texas tradition: the Luling Thumpin’ 5K at 7:30 a.m. Saturday, June 17, in Zedler Park, Luling. Not to be confused with the venerable Luling Watermelon Thump festival, which takes place the following week (June 23-25).

Hit the trails running at the Capt’n Karl’s Trail Series at Pedernales Falls on Saturday June 24-Sunday June 25. The events include 60K, 30K, 20K, 10K, and 5K. They are night-time races starting at 7:00 p.m. The Capt’n Karl’s Trail Series begins on the hilly, steep and rocky trails of Pedernales Falls State Park along the Pedernales River. Located nine miles east of historic Johnson City and 43 miles west of Austin. Racers will enjoy lots of challenging, technical and gorgeous single track. Runners will traverse Twin Buttes, Lone Mountain and Butler Mountain as they wind along the Juniper and Madrone Trails towards Polly’s Aid Station. The course continues along the Wheatley and Equestrian Trails back to Wolf Mountain and Start/Finish Aid Stations.

The very popular Lake Pflugerville Triathlon is set for Sunday, June 25 at 7:00 a.m. at Lake Pflugerville  and features both sprint and Olympic distances. The Sprint distance triathlon starts with a 500-meter swim in Lake Pflugerville with a sandy beach entry and an easy exit to a paved transition area. Then you are off on a 13.2-mile bike ride through the countryside with enough low rollers to keep it interesting. Racers will finish up with a 3-mile run around the lake on a flat crushed granite trail with water stops along the way. Olympic distance participants will basically do two laps of each component.

Lots of Independence Day runs take place on other days. Not so with the Popsicle Run 4 Miler, set for Tuesday July 4 at 7:00 a.m. at Negley Elementary in Kyle. The challenging course overs much of Kyle’s Plum Creek neighborhood. Fruit ice for all finishers to cool off with.

Frustrated by 10-year age group? Plenty of races still offer the more runner-friendly five-year divisions, including the Firecracker 4 miler Saturday, July 9 at 7:00 a.m. at 5 Mile Dam Park in San Marcos.