Race Info

Non-Series Event

Nov 5, 2016

Rhythm and Roots 5K 10K Run

Non-Series Event

7th annual Earl Scruggs Center Rhythm & Roots 5K and10K Run

New This Year – Certified Course
The Earl Scruggs Center is excited to announce both the Rhythm & Roots 5K and 10K routes will be certified beginning this year! Run, Stroll, Walk or walk your dog and join us for the biggest year yet!
Discounted Admission to the Earl Scruggs Center
Don’t just come for the run!  Show your race bib at the Earl Scruggs Center on race day through February 28, 2017 to receive one discounted ticket at 50% off regular admission rates.  The discount may be used on race day during regular operating hours or during any other regular operating time in specified date range. Regular admission is $12 Adults, $8 Senior/College Students with ID, $5 Youth.


Students in elementary through high school are encouraged to come out and bring their friends. The school with the highest number of students participating in this event will be awarded a trophy and a $250 gift to their school’s PTO to be used as determined by the PTO. The numbers from both the 5K and 10K will be added together to determine the total count per school and one award will be given based on that total. The winning school will be recognized during the awards ceremony. 2014 saw the highest number ever of student participants and Jefferson Elementary wins the award for highest participation numbers ever!  Will your school win in 2016?

Live music begins at 8:00 a.m. and will kick off the race at 8:30 a.m. The 10K will start and finish with the 5K at the Don Gibson Theatre located at 318 South Washington Street in historic Uptown Shelby. Your route takes you through Uptown Shelby and around the historic 1907 courthouse on the beautiful court square which is now home to the Earl Scruggs Center: Music & Stories from the American South. Earl Scruggs is a Cleveland County native and known worldwide for his three finger style on the banjo as well as his innovation with the banjo in other areas of music.
The route passes historic homes on tree-lined streets and then step back in time as you run through historic Sunset Cemetery where you will pass the final resting place and incredible memorial of Shelby native, Don Gibson. His songs such as “I Can’t Stop Loving You” and “Sweet Dreams” are timeless and his music helped shape the Nashville sound. As you continue on your route you will visit Shelby City Park, home to a wonderful playground, historic carousel and restored miniature rotary train and aquatics center and gymnasium. Your run will take you through the City Park Recreation and Sports Complex which includes 3 multi-purpose sports fields, warm-up area, playground, picnic shelter, walking track and horseshoe pits. After visiting City Park your route brings you back through Uptown to cross the finish line back at the Don Gibson Theatre with live music and refreshments in the reception area.

Photographers will take photos throughout the course and at the awards ceremony. The awards ceremony will be held after the 10K concludes and results are compiled. Photos will be made available online for free. Participation awards will be given to all youth (12 and under).

Are you or someone you know a banjo player that might want to be part of this fabulous event?  Contact Emily Epley at 704-487-6233.  All banjo players are invited to come and bring a fellow banjo player to kick off the race by playing Foggy Mountain Breakdown – it’s the best race start anywhere!  Pre-register as a banjo player before October 15, 2016 to receive a race t-shirt and a free admission to the Earl Scruggs Center.  If not pre-registered, please come join the fun anyway as we pay tribute to Earl Scruggs… and get runners off to a great start.

Interested in volunteering?  Contact the Earl Scruggs Center volunteer coordinator at 704-487-6233.

Sponsorship Opportunities
Race sponsorship packages available. Sponsorships are tax-deductible. Contact Emily Epley at 704-487-6233 for available opportunities.

This event benefits Destination Cleveland County’s Earl Scruggs Center, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.


Refunds will not be issued for any reason.

All athletes registered by October 15, 2016 will be guaranteed an event t-shirt in requested size.

Age Groups

Top 3 Male/Female finishers overall
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 12 & Under
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 13-19
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 20-29
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 30-39
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 40-49
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 50-59
Top 3 Male/Female finishers ages 60-69
Top 3 Male/Female finishers age 70 and over

Awards will be given as stated above.  Awards will be given to all youth 12 and under who complete either event.

Participants may pick up race packets Friday night and Saturday morning at the Earl Scruggs Center on the Washington Street side of the courtsquare in Uptown Shelby, NC.  For mapping/direction purposes, use 116 S Washington Street Shelby NC – look for signs.

The Earl Scruggs Center where packet pick-up occurs is a block and ½ from the Don Gibson Theatre where participants will start and finish.
Friday November 4, 2016                 1:00 pm –  6:00 p.m.
Saturday November 5, 2016             7:00 a.m. – 8:15 a.m.