Registration is now open for the 27th annual Sandy Springs Lightning 5K/10K races, which will kick off the Sandy Springs Festival on Sept. 23.

The run is a popular start to the festival, held at Heritage Green, 6075 Sandy Springs Circle, which is an even older Sandy Springs tradition dating back 32 years. This year’s festival runs Sept. 23-24.

This year’s Lightning will be the first to allow pets to run alongside their human companions. “The Sandy Springs Festival has always been a pet-friendly event, so we wanted the race to reflect this too,” said festival director Sarah Poland in a press release. “We look forward to welcoming all members of the community – both young and old, and both two-legged and four-legged!”

Early, discounted registration for the race continues through July 20. An advanced registration is available through Aug. 20, and there will be day-of-race registration as well. For details, click here.

John Ruch

John Ruch is an Atlanta-based journalist. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.