Running enthusiasts looking for a new course in Central Indiana can find that and more in Hendricks County during the Oct. 1 weekend as the inaugural Run Greater Indianapolis event kicks off in Danville. Dave Mason, president of Rapid Running Event Management, promises a health-focused, family-friendly experience that will include a Health & Fitness Expo on Saturday prior to a full slate of races on Sunday including a half marathon, 5K and one-mile kids’ fun run. Couple that with some of the other Downtown sights that weekend including the town’s Scarecrow Festival and the many restaurants on the Hendricks County Courthouse Square, and visitors should have plenty to see and do before and after the races. “There really is a lot going on that weekend, so I hope people will stay and enjoy what Danville and Hendricks County have to offer,” Mason said. Rapid Running, who used to handle about 20 Indiana races a year, cut back its in-state races to just two in recent years to expand nationwide. But Mason just couldn’t ignore the opportunity in Hendricks County any longer. “The county really didn’t have a major endurance event,” he said. “With the way that area continues to grow and with the appeal running events have in the Indianapolis area, this opportunity just piqued our interest.” Mason believes he found a perfect course and weekend to deliver a quality event. The marathon will start and end at the Historic Downtown Courthouse Square and will take runners on a scenic journey through the Hendricks County countryside just outside of town. Indianapolis radio stations will provide music for the runners throughout the course, which Mason believes is challenging enough for the avid runner, but easy enough for all ages and abilities. The races begin at 7:30 a.m. Oct. 2 with runners picking up their packets from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. the previous day at the Health & Fitness Expo. Awards will be given to the top three finishers in each race and in each age group. All half-marathon participants will receive a high-quality tech shirt with their packet and a custom-designed medal after finishing. Participants in the other two races will receive commemorative T-shirts. The event also is the 10th stop on Rapid Running’s 14-city 2011 event tour that includes races in Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Wisconsin and Wyoming. The tour is expected to expand to 25 races next year with the Danville event becoming an annual stop. For more information about the event or to register, click here or visit the Health & Fitness Expo from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 1 on the square in Danville.