About the LRC

The Lakeland Runners Club was founded in 1974 as a social organization, and transitioned to a custody account of the Lakeland Family YMCA in the early 1980s. In 1991, the club joined the Road Runners Club of America (RRCA). In 1997, the club incorporated as the Lakeland Runners Club, Inc. The LRC is a subordinate 501(c)(3) nonprofit of the RRCA.

The LRC’s commitment to providing opportunities for people of all ages and abilities features races of varying distance and difficulty, weekly community group runs, free youth running initiatives, and training programs that provide motivation and knowledge to set and achieve personal goals.

The LRC reaches over 3,500 people annually within 10 miles of Lakeland, and over 4,500 throughout Florida. Over 250 volunteers donate more than 4,500 hours annually to achieve the LRC’s mission to promote running and fitness for people of all ages and abilities in the community.

The LRC’s premier event is the Summer Sunrise Watermelon 5k Series. The race welcomes a wide population of runners, from local elite to a competitive age group and recreational runners, to run three 5ks each summer and fund scholarships for high school runners throughout Polk County. The LRC also holds the oldest race in Polk County, the Lake to Lake 10k which started in 1977, and the Mayfaire 5k which started in 1980. In 2023, the LRC partnered with Bonnet Springs Park for the Bonnet Springs Park 5k.

read more about the LRC’s history…

We Are a Nonprofit Organization

The LRC is a grassroots organization governed locally by a board of directors that is elected by the membership at the Annual Meeting of the Membership.  See the LRC bylaws for more information.  The LRC is a subordinate 501(c)(3) under the Road Runners Club of America. 

The organization is managed by volunteers under the leadership of the board.

Our Mission

Our mission is to promote running and fitness for runners of all ages and abilities in the community through fellowship, education and formal & informal running events.


Find our Annual Reports, Form 990, and other governing documents HERE.

Charity Registration

A copy of the official registration and financial information may be obtained from the Division of Consumer Services by calling toll-free,1-800-435-7352 (800-HELP-FLA) within the state or visiting  Check-a-Charity.  Registration does not imply endorsement, approval, or recommendation by the state. 

The registration number for the Lakeland Runners Club is CH3676


Find our Mailing Address and link to email HERE