Black and white photo of a team celebrating a Hudson Relays victory in front of Adelbert Hall

Campus Spotlight: Hudson Relays

The Hudson Relays are a sure sign of spring at Case Western Reserve University. First held in 1910 to commemorate Western Reserve University’s 1882 move from Hudson, Ohio, to University Circle, the Hudson Relays event stands as the oldest programmed campus tradition at Case Western Reserve University. That year, the Class of 1912 captured the victory with a race time of 2 hours and 1 minute.

But in the 111 years since they started, the relays have taken on different forms and have an interesting history. For example, in that first year, the first class experienced a disqualification. After two members of the Class of 1910 got lost, replacements were transported via automobile, which led to the disqualification.

The concern of using cars continued, and in 1914, alumni were added to the race to ensure adherence to the rules. Even still, all teams in the 1946 race were disqualified for using cars.

And one year—in 1942—the entire race was completed using bicycles.

This year, the event will take on a new look to accommodate COVID-19 restrictions. Held Saturday, April 24, at 10 a.m. as part of Legacy Week, the Hudson Relays will feature classes running in teams of 10 in a single loop of the traditional five-mile route. It will be livestreamed with studio commentary.

And you don’t need to be on campus to get involved in the festivities this year. All members of the Case Western Reserve University community are invited to participate throughout the week (April 19–23) by submitting photos or videos of themselves running, walking or engaging in any physical activity to be featured in the livestream alongside the relays. Student prizes will be offered for the best pet picture, the best view, the most creative home workout, the most school spirit and the best race outfit. After the race, Interim President Scott Cowen and Vice President of Student Affairs Louis Stark will preside over the closing ceremonies.

Get involved with this year’s race. And take time to read up on the event’s history.