Event Details

Whether you’re a serious runner, a casual jogger or a walker, you’ll enjoy the Autism 5K.  We average over 1500 participants annually, evenly split between walkers and runners. Many groups participate in support of a particular family member, a cause, org or workplace. Others participate to compete in a certified 5K or just to enjoy a nice run or walk around Lake Calhoun.


Saturday, May 20th, 2017  – This year we are splitting up the start times between runners and walkers.

The runners will start at 9am sharp, followed by the family/group walk at 9:15am

We start and finish at the NW Corner of Lake Calhoun again this year!




Location: Lake Calhoun,Lake Calhoun Executive Center

Address:  3033 Excelsior Blvd, Minneapolis, MN 55416

Google Map Link for directions: http://tinyurl.com/autism5k-map

Race Course:

The course follows the Lake Calhoun Parkway road around the lake (not the trail). It is a 5K (3.1 mile) run or walk and is a USA Track and Field certified 5K.
– Return Back to the tent for refreshments after your run.

The Cause:

1 in 68 American children have some form of Autism and 1 in 54 boys.  This is up 72% from 2002! (CDC numbers from March 2012)  Now more than ever we need to support our local families, build awareness and support autism research.

Join us at the Autism 5K to help our cause and support your community.

Net proceeds benefit Children with Autism Deserve Education, a local volunteer nonprofit that support children and families affected by autism, as well as research.


Register Online

The easiest way to register! We’re using Active for our online registration.  During registration you can join a participation team and most importantly, get signed up!

Online Registration {COMING SOON}

Mail-in Registration Form

We love getting mail! Download and complete our paper registration form (PDF) and mail it in or drop it off.  Please complete one form for each participant and enclose payment.
(Online Reg only this week)


Race Day Registration

It’s (almost) never too late to register!
Race day registration is available right up until our 9am start time. Race Day registration costs $10 extra, but our registration volunteers are amazing to chat with. 🙂

Event Info

Packet Pickup (advance and on race day):

When you pick up your packet you will receive your race bib and number, with an embedded timing chip.  If you are eligible for a t-shirt, you will also pick up your t-shirt at packet pickup.

Advance Packet Pickup:
Friday, May 19th, 10am-7pm

Location TBD soon

**You can pick up multiple packets, please make sure you know your friends’ t-shirt size and that they know you are picking up so there is no confusion.  🙂

Race Day Packet Pickup:
7:00am-8:45am at Lake Calhoun, near the start.

We are expecting a record turnout this year, so please arrive early to give yourself time to park and check in.


This year we have the opportunity to park in the Lake Calhoun Executive Center located at 3033 Excelsior Blvd, Minneapolis, MN 55416 because of our new start/finish line are located nearby.  There are places to park around Lake Calhoun, but the parkway will be closed off just before the start time. The event is run on the Lake Calhoun Parkway road that circles the lake (not the paths). If you plan to run, you might consider parking away from the finish line though since you will finish well before the walkers and might not get out right away otherwise.

Kids / Strollers / Dogs / iPods??

Kids are welcome and not required to register – but can if they’d like a race shirt and/or have their times scored. Strollers and Dogs are fine for walkers, but please line up towards the back rather than towards the front with the runners. We are not restricting the use of iPods, MP3 players or headphones.  If you have a vintage yellow Sony Walkman, prepare for high fives.

Donations and Fundraising Teams:

2017 Autism 5K Page on CrowdRise:  {COMING SOON}

The Autism 5K is using the CrowdRise platform to support our fundraising teams and to collect donations this year. Any amount donated or raised helps the cause.

Fundraisers are eligible to win any of a variety of prizes. Fundraisers who raise at least $100 are eligible and will receive a prize drawing entry for every one hundred dollars raised.

Individuals can also make a one time donation during registration for this event.  You may also set up a participation team by  becoming a team captain or joining a pre-existing team.  These participation team are not related to the fundraising teams on Crowdrise.

Who is the race for?

For Serious Runners:
This is a certified  and timed course around Lake Calhoun, a great 5K course. Plaques will be awarded to winners in each age category (Male and Female) w/prizes for overall winners.

For Not-so-Serious Runners:
Enjoy a run around beautiful Lake Calhoun on a Spring morning.

For Walkers & Families:
The Autism 5K Family Walk draws scores of families and individuals who walk for the cause(this is not timed). Approximately 1000 walkers participated in 2011!


The T-shirt features a one of a kind creation – artwork completed by a local artist. This will be our 7th t-shirt design and one you’ll definitely want in your collection (whether you began running in 7 years ago or are just getting started)!

Past designs have been completed by other celebrated local artist such as Mary Grand Pre’, Michael Birawer and Jeff Boutin. The incredible 2012 piece was created by Caden Larson, a local child with autism.

T-shirts are available in adult and kids sizes

Note:  The t-shirt is considered a “participation shirt” and will not be sold separately.

Age Categories for Top Finishers:

12 and under


Both Male and Female Runners receive awards

Registration Fees:

Pre-Registration (online or at packet pickup):
$40 for 5K and t-shirt

Race Day
$45 for 5K and t-shirt

Refund Policy:

Refunds may be issued up to 72 hours prior to race day, if your plans change. Please consider that your registration fee is also a donation to a nonprofit organization.

The Autism 5K will be held, rain or shine.

Registration Options and links:

Online Registration:

Mail-in Registration:
(PDF download) – {COMING SOON}
– mail to: 6031 Culligan Way, Minnetonka, MN  55345)
– checks payable to “C.A.D.E” or “Children with Autism Deserve Education” – our 501c3 beneficiary

Register on Race Day:
– Walk up registration. We will have computer terminals open so that you can register right up until race time, quickly and efficiently!

Register in advance at Packet Pickup:

Friday, May 19th, 10am-7pm

Location TBD soon

Volunteers Wanted:

You can never have enough support for a large 5K like this, so if you’re not up for running, we’d love for you to help us out.  If you’re interested in lending a hand, please email Kirsten.


Contact us at info@autism5k.org