Winterman 2020: 10 Reasons to Participate

Winterman is the BEST winter running experience! And it’s part of the official Winterlude schedule of events! So if you’re in town this February, or looking for an excuse to ditch the treadmill, sign up for Winterman and have a winter blast! 

  • New Location

    We’ve moved the start of the event to the Innovation Centre, on Bayview Station Road. This venue is normally a business accelerator full of great local entrepreneurs but for Winterman, it’s going to full of great runners (you!) and some top notch amenities. The Innovation Centre has plenty of room to hangout and stay warm before/after your event. It also has washrooms, showers, and water fill stations! It’s also less than 30 meters to the start line, so all the action is condensed, making it a great place for spectators and relay teams. For anyone doing multiple laps on race-day, each pass through the turnaround will have lots of volunteers, spectators and cheers! We think the Innovation Centre will be our best host-venue yet!

  • The Start Cannon

    One of the events biggest attractions is back for 2020; the starting gun (aka. “The Cannon”). The Canadian Armed Forces are going to make sure the events start with a “BANG”. All event starts are going to have much more than an airhorn to kick start their run. If you haven’t been to an event with a cannon start, we highly recommend it. Because we’re hosting the event at a new location this year, we’ve had to find a new position for the starting cannon. New for this year: the cannon will be in front of runner (pointed away, and at a safe distance), which allows you to see the explosion LIVE, and has everyone running towards the

  • New Announcer: Michelle Campbell

    For this year’s event, we’ve brought on a new Announcer & Finish Line Marshall: Michelle Campbell. Michelle is a longtime friend of Somersault and she’s ran everything from 3km to marathon. Not only does she know what runners will be going through, but she’s great with a microphone. Those that know Michelle will know her unique balance of humor, energy and professionalism. She’ll cheer you on as you start another loop, she’ll call out your name as you run through the finishing shoot, and she’ll have a chance to interview some of our special guests for the event. More on that later!

  • Our Guest of Honor: Counsellor Jeff Leiper

    We’re excited to let everyone know that our counsellor, Jeff Leiper, will be on site for the start of the event and the medal ceremony for the 3km, 5km and 10km event. Mr. Leiper will be on site 30 minutes before the start of race for anyone who wants to say hi or grab a photo. He’ll say a few words before the starting gun goes off, and as runners finish their events, they’ll have a chance to receive their medal from Jeff himself! Jeff Leiper has been a big supporter of Somersault over the years and we can’t thank him enough for taking time out of his busy schedule to be with us on Race Day.

  • Brunch at Flapjacks Canadian Diner

    We get it, running in the Winter is tough and for some of us, we need a little extra motivation. Our finish line will have bananas and granola bars, for a quick fix but we have something MUCH bigger in store for our runners at this event. Bring your race bib to Flapjacks Canadian Diner and get 15% off your bill! You can refuel with breakfast, brunch, lunch or whatever you’re craving post-race. We won’t judge, but we will give you a little help with the bill. Visit to plan your “recovery”.

  • New Prizes and give-aways

    We can’t give away all the new just yet but we have some great local support at this event. We’ll have some of our great supporters from years past but we’ve really tried to tie in with the Hintonburg Community for this event. Seeing as the Innovation Center is right down the street from dozens of amazing local shops, we hope that you’ll go support some of the great businesses that support us. One prize that we CAN mention is a gift basket from Beyond the Pale Brewing Company. The only catch here is that you need to be 19+ to win this prize but if you’re not fortunate enough to win this prize, you’re still within walking distance of some great local Craft Beer. Visit for more info.

  • Official Winterlude Event

    Everyone’s favorite winter festival and everyone’s favorite winter running event are now under the same umbrella. We’ll have some of the Winterlude team at our event, along with Winterlude signage and runners from far and wide. Winterlude attracts tourists from all over and we’ve had people attend Winterman from Europe, the Carribean and beyond! This year will be no different and it’s your chance to run alongside others who might be experiencing winter for the first time.

  • Ice Hogs are Back!

    Being an Official Winterlude Event, we asked if the Ice Hog Family would want to come meet the runners at Winterman. For those that aren’t familiar, the Ice Hogs are the official mascots of Winterlude. This family of human sized groundhogs are friendly and always ready for a photo. They’ll be on site before the event and for the starting gun. Be sure to high-five them on course, or meet them before the running being.

  • Distance for Everyone!

    Winterman has 6 different distances to choose from: 3km, 5km, 10km, Half Marathon, Marathon and Marathon Relay. Whether you’re looking for a short race, or a long race; an easy run or a personal best; Winterman has something for everyone. If you’re coming with family or friends, they’re welcome to cheer from the sidelines, or sign up for a race and cheer you on-course! All of our events can be done as a run, a run/walk or a walk. The course itself goes along the Parkway and has great views of the War Museum, the Ottawa River and the surrounding neighborhoods. Consider inviting others to join you for this fun event.

  • Free Massage!

    After a winter run, you deserve a massage. And for Winterman, we couldn’t make it any easier to loosen up after your legs have been through a race. All participants are entitled to a free massage after their race. We have a team of 10 massage therapists inside the Innovation Centre to help you recover right after you cross the finish line. We don’t want to tell you how to live your life, but a post-race massage is always a nice (or love-hate!) feeling.

  • New Race Director!

    In late 2019, Adam Kourakis became Co-Owner of Somersault alongside Christine McKinty. Adam’s first event as co-owner is going to be WInterman 2020. A lot of the above changes are directly as a result of his vision, as he aims to make Somersault events an experience like never before. “I’ve been racing on the road since I was 12 and have had a chance to see how things are done elsewhere. I’m trying to pull together all of the things I loved about other races I’ve participated in, to give Ottawa something really special”. Be sure to sign up for Winterman 2020 to see what Adam is bringing to the series. If you see him on Race Day, be sure to give him some words of encouragement, or some advice. If you have any suggestions for Adam, he can be reached at


The Somersault Event Series is the pre-eminent event series in Eastern Canada consisting of triathlon, duathlon, and running events for all ages and abilities.



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