Event Information

Freestyle Farm, 188 Mack Hill Road, Amherst, New Hampshire
October 15, 2016

Runners are invited to the Joe English Twilight Challenge. The dusk-to-dark challenge offers a choice of events on a moonlit night: First, a team-relay marathon, 10 laps of a 2.62-mile loop (two or five on a team). Second, a team-relay half-marathon, 5 laps of a 2.62-mile loop (two or five on a team). Third, an ultramarathon, as many 2.62-mile laps as you can do in 6 hours or run 10 laps and complete the trail marathon. Lastly, you can run the half or full marathon individually. This unique event, featuring a festive music, food, and lighted "Twilight Central" event location that is spectator-friendly, is hosted by the Amherst Land Trust and Freestyle Farm LLC. All proceeds support conservation.

Relay Stats

Start time: 7 p.m. EDT
Sunset: 6:24 p.m. EDT
Moonrise: 4:02 p.m. EDT
Length: 13.1 or 26.2 miles
Elevation gain/lap: 316 ft
Water/aid stations: 1 per lap
Registrants: 350
Path width: 12 feet
Race duration: 2-6 hours
Team size: 2 or 5 runners

Ultramarathon stats

Start time: 5 p.m.
Sunset: 6:24 p.m. EDT
Moonrise: 4:02 p.m. EDT
Length: approx. 25 to 50? miles
Elevation gain/lap: 316 ft
Water/aid stations: 1 per lap
Registrants: 50
Path width: 12 feet
Race duration: 6 hours

Event specifics

Registration: Now open, click here.
Individual fee (half-, full-marathon): $30 by Sept 17; $35 by October 13; $45 on race day
Team fee (per person): $30 by Sept 17; $35 by October 13; $45 on race day
Ultra fee: $30 by Sept 17; $35 by October 13; $45 on race day
Challenge goodies: bib, swag bag. Event T-Shirt (not included) $15.
Parking: fields, onsite,Click here.
Course map: Click here.
Google course map: Click here.
Our directions: Click here.
Mapquest directions: click here

On the trail

The Twilight Challenge begins in the fields of 300-acre Freestyle Farm, a private venue for horse riding. Pick up your bib and swag bag at the indoor arena. Check out and thank our sponsors. Find the start/finish just to the south of the arena.

The race follows groomed trails that surround a 50-acre pond. The trail surface is grass and dirt with excellent footing. Most of the terrain is gently sloping with a series of short hills. There are no paved surfaces and no vehicles on the course. XC racing/training shoes or XC spikes recommended. If it is wet, expect mud. The course will be marked with colored flags, a white, lime line, green glow sticks, and signal fires.

Goodies and food

All entrants receive a bib and swag bag.

Hot and cold concessions will be available. Go to the indoor arena or start/finish to find snacks, drinks, fruit, coffee, grilled items, chili and much more.

Aid and first aid

We will have an aid station at the start/finish line with water, Gatorade, gel, granola bars, and other goodies.

We’ll also have an athletic trainer and EMT squad stationed at the start and available via cell phone. We’ll post their phone numbers at the indoor arena.

Friends and family

The amphitheater setting of the start/finish offers a great view of the course. You can also view the challenge from several vantage points along the course. Spectators should look for course maps in the indoor arena and at the start. Coaches, friends, family, and others may walk the course, but please do not interfere with runners and hikers. Stay to the side, and walk single file.

Awards

To honor the spirit of the Joe English Trail Challenge—to finish ranks right up there with winning—the first- and last-place finishers will both earn custom medals. The awards will be given next to the start/finish line, or in bad weather, in the indoor arena. All results will be posted online, broken out by class (age, gender, and hiker versus runner).

Parking

All parking will be on field/grass at Freestyle Farm. Click here for a map. Parking is free in areas 1 and 2. Premium parking, for a $5 donation, is in area 3 and 4. Parking for officials, buses, and the handicapped is near the start/finish. Parking is not allowed outside designated areas or on Mack Hill Road. Violators may be towed. For directions to parking, Click here

About Freestyle Farm

Freestyle Farm is a privately owned, 300-acre equestrian center located at 188 Mack Hill Road in the northern part of Amherst. The center provides boarding and training of event horses and welcomes the public to visit and to participate in equestrian and other events. The farm works to maintain the rural and agricultural character of Amherst through preservation of open space. The trails and other facilities are not open for use by the general public.

About your donation to the Amherst Land Trust

All proceeds from the event go to the Amherst Land Trust for the protection of open, scenic, agricultural, and undeveloped lands in Amherst and nearby towns. Founded in 1975, the trust has worked to educate the public about conservation and protect thousands of acres of land similar to the lands across which most of the challenge runs. Please click here to learn more about the trust, its land-protection work, and becoming a member. The trust encourages and celebrates the use of conservation land for recreation.

Carry-In/Carry-Out

All participants and spectators are asked to carry out any trash that they carry in. Permission to access the trails on Freestyle Farm is generously provided free of charge by the owner. Please respect your opportunity to use the facility and dispose of any litter that you find.

For more information

Contact the race director or any of his associates.

George Bower, Race Director, TrailChallenge@Joe-English.org
Randy Chapman, ranchap@gmail.com
Bill Birchard, bbirchard@aol.com

Food and Lodging Information

Joe English Challenge Series
Freestyle Farm, 188 Mack Hill Road, Amherst, New Hampshire
May 3rd, 2015 and September 26, 2015

There is no lodging in Amherst or nearby the event site, which lies at the end of the road at the top of a hill. Participants planning to spend the night have many choices within 10 miles, either in the direction of Manchester, NH, or Nashua, NH. Some ideas are below.

Lodging

Holiday Inn Express and Suites, Merrimack, NH
4 Amherst Rd
Merrimack, NH 03054
(603) 429-3600
http://www.ihg.com/holidayinnexpress/hotels/us/en/merrimack/mhthn/hoteldetail

Hill-Brook Motel
250 Route 101
Bedford, NH 03110
(603) 472-3788
http://www.hillbrookmotel.com

Comfort Inn Merrimack
242 Daniel Webster Highway
Merrimack, NH, US, 03054
Phone: (603) 429-4600
http://www.comfortinn.com/hotel-merrimack-new_hampshire-NH040?sid=xRK_Qi.D6BQ1ghlB.6

Hampton Inn Nashua
407 Amherst Street
Nashua, NH 03063
(603) 883-5333
http://www.newenglandhamptoninns.com/hampton-hotel-nashua-nh/index.html

Crowne Plaza Nashua
2 Somerset Parkway
Nashua, NH 03063
(603) 886-1200
http://www.cpnashua.com

Courtyard by Marriott Nashua
2200 Southwood Dr
Nashua, NH 03063
(603) 880-9100
http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/mhtnc-courtyard-nashua/

The Bedford Village Inn
2 Olde Bedford Way
Bedford, NH 03110
603-472-2001
http://www.bedfordvillageinn.com

Zahn's Alpine Guest House
97 S. Main St.
Mont Vernon, NH 03057
(603)673-2334, Toll Free: (888)745-0051
http://zahnsalpineguesthouse.com

Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Merrimack/Nashua
246 Daniel Webster Hwy
Merrimack, NH 03054
(603) 424-8100
http://www.hawthornsuitesmerrimacknashua.com/

Camping

There is no camping near Freestyle Farm. The closest commercial campground is about 25 minutes away in New Boston, just north of Amherst:

Friendly Beaver Campground
79 Mont Vernon Rd.
New Boston, NH 03070
(603) 487-5570
http://www.friendlybeaver.com

Food

There are many restaurants in Amherst and neighboring towns, all at least several miles from Freestyle Farm. The closest convenience store and sandwich shop is on the Amherst Village common, just a minute or two from the route to Freestyle Farm. It is Moulton's Market, 10 Main St., (603-673-2404) which sells fresh sandwiches, soups, and donuts as well as coffee, snacks and groceries.

A sampling of locally favorite restaurants:

Foodees
167 Union Square
Milford, NH 03055
(603) 672-5333
http://www.foodeesmilford.com

Pasta Loft
241 Union Square
Milford, NH 03055
(603) 672-2270
http://www.pastaloft.com

PastAmore
103 New Hampshire 101A
Amherst, NH 03031
(603) 578-9696
http://pastamore.profitscode.com

Black Forest Cafe
212 New Hampshire 101
Amherst, NH 03031
(603) 672-0500
http://theblackforestcafe.com

bluAqua Restaurant
292 New Hampshire 101
Amherst, NH 03031
(603) 673-4321
http://www.bluaquarestaurant.com

Joey's Diner
1 Craftsman Ln
Amherst, NH 03054
(603) 577-8955
http://www.joeysdiner.com

Chiang Mai Thai
63 New Hampshire 101A
Amherst, NH 03031
(603) 672-2929
http://chiangmaifinethaicuisine.com

Giorgio's
524 Nashua St #1
Milford, NH 03055
(603) 673-3939
http://www.giorgios.com

Mi Jalisco Restaurante Mexicano
586 Nashua Street
Milford, NH 03055-4992
http://www.mijalisconh.com

LongHorn Steakhouse
124 State Route 101a
Amherst, NH 03031
(603) 579-6975?
http://www.longhornsteakhouse.com

LaBelle Winery
345 New Hampshire 101
Amherst, NH 03031
(603) 672-9898
http://www.labellewinerynh.com