Sun to Surf Half Marathon

Entries will open on Monday evening for the newest Eastern Bay half-Marathon.

The Sun to Surf Half Marathon, which is set to finish on iconic Ōhope Beach, will take place on the 6th of April next year.

Organised by Victory Events, with support from the Whakatāne District Council, the event is expected to attract visitors to the region and offer competitors of all abilities the opportunity to run and walk from Whakatāne to Ōhope Beach.

Besides the Sun to Surf Half, the inaugural beachside running festival will also offer the Surf Strider 10km and Sun Run and Walk 5km.

The route combines 80 per cent road with 20 per cent trail, and will start by the bronze statue of Wairaka at Whakatāne Heads, then through town before hitting Hillcrest Rd.

The route continues along the Ōhope Harbourside Trail before the final 1 kilometre along Ōhope Beach.

Whakatāne District Mayor Tony Bonne says he's was hugely excited by the  potential of the event.

Organisers say the event will also give back to the community with 10 per cent of entry fees to be invested into two community groups - Whakatāne Surf Club and Life Education Trust.

There'll also be post-race live music, entertainment, craft food and beverage stalls, followed by an awards ceremony beach bonfire and live music.

Emma Griffiths