BILLINGS -- The 12th Annual Yellowstone Elementary School Cross Country Meet is back on this year, but with a twist.
Instead of an in-person event, each school is encouraged to host its own one-mile race for boys and girls grades 3-5. This year's window is Oct. 6-31 and is free to enter.
Schools are allowed to pick the day and a one-mile course on their own campus. For schools choosing not to host, participants can still register individually for the race and run on their own.
The top three in each age group, gender, and at each school will receive Big Sky State Games medals. BSSG will also provide T-shirts and a gift to the first 500 registered. A traveling Spirit Trophy will be awarded to the school with the most participants per capita and this year's Team Top Dog Award will be presented to the school with the most overall participants. Runners are encouraged to show their team spirit and wear school colors.
The meet's purpose annually is to introduce local youth to a positive running experience.
"Cross country is a sport where everyone can participate and individuals can experience success by meeting their personal goals," BSSG said in a media release.
Last year's meet hosted an estimated 1,000 runners at Pioneer Park.
Participants can register online here.