Outdoor Programs

What's Happening Now:
As North Carolina moves to reopen, the City of Burlington has reviewed and approved for some outdoor programs to begin again. If you are interested in participating in any of these activities, please familiarize yourself with the new safety protocols that are in place to safe guard the health of participants and staff against COVID-19.  For complete details on the City's response and current park and facility openings/closures, click here.

Stewardship Tips - Respecting Our Parks & Trails!
Wether you are participating in a program or going out on your own, please be good steward of our parks and trails! Follow these tips when you venture out!
  • Trash your trash, don't leave it behind.
  • Leave what you find, take only pictures.
  • Respect wildlife.The park or trail is their home and you are only visiting.
  • Be kind to other visitors and users. 
  • Keep your pet on a leash.


Get hiking on local trails around Burlington and Alamance County! Join a small group, guided hike and come ready for natural surface trails, rolling terrain with a few steep hills and a moderate pace. Wear comfortable walking shoes (closed-toed) or boots. Bring a water bottle, insect repellent, hand sanitizer and trekking poles (optional). Hikes generally last between 1.5-2 hours. All ages welcome, but minors must be accompanied by an adult. Please leave your four-legged friends at home at this time. Free, but pre-registration required! Space is limited. Register now.

Upcoming Hikes:
  • Tuesday, November 24 at 3:00 pm
    City Park - 1400 Overbrook Rd. Burlington | 2 miles | Register
  • Tuesday, December 1 at 3:00 pm
    Great Bend Park - 350 Greenwood Dr. Burlington | 2 miles | Register
  • Tuesday, December 8 at 3:00 pm
    Fairchild Park - 827 S. Graham Hopedale Rd. Burlington | 2 miles (2 laps) | Register
  • Saturday, December 12 at 1:30 pm
    Guilford Mackintosh Park & Marina - 1345 NC HWY 61, Whitsett | 3 miles | Register
  • Tuesday, December 15 at 3:00 pm
    Glencoe Paddle Access - 2348 Glencoe St. Burlington | 2 miles | Register
  • Tuesday, December 22 at 3:00 pm
    Davidson Park - 3715 Rural Retreat Rd. Burlington | 2 miles (2 laps) | Register
Health and Safety Protocols for Group Hikes:
  • Pre-registration required. No walk-ups allowed.
  • Do NOT attend if you are sick or have been around someone who is.
  • It is highly encouraged that high-risk persons NOT attend. According to the CDC, high-risk includes people 65+ and/or have serious underlying medical conditions (immunocompromised, chronic lung disease, moderate-to-severe asthma, serious heart conditions, severe obesity, diabetes, chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis or liver disease). 
  • Group size is limited in accordance with mass gathering limits/executive orders. 
  • Participants and staff are required to wear masks during check-in and as the group gathers before the hike. Once hiking and social distanced on the trail, masks will not be required.
  • During the hike, participants and staff will keep social distance unless they are from the same household.
  • Participants and staff are encouraged to wash or sanitize hands before and after hiking (please be prepared with your own hand sanitizer).


no-frills \'no 'frilz\ adj. 1. providing only the essentials
The No-Frills Trail 5K is a series of trail runs offered once a month from November through March at Guilford Mackintosh Park & Marina. Entry is only $5! This is not a fancy 5k, so we’ll only be providing a well-marked, 5K trail course and a clock so you can see your time as you finish. Pre-registration is required and the race will be capped at 40 participants. No walk-up registrations will be allowed.

This is a technical course on natural surface trail with ROOTS, ROCKS, MUD, LEAVES, HILLS. This ain't your mama's greenway race. And remember...
   - if you want a t-shirt – wear one.
   - if you need snacks – bring some.
   - if you want an award – too bad!

For a little added fun, each race will have a theme and racers are encouraged to dress up accordingly! For December, the theme is "Meowy Christmas" - so get your cat ears ready and dig out your cat onesie! 

  • Saturday, December 12 at 10 am: REGISTER (registration closes at 10 am on 12/11 or when capacity is reached)
  • Saturday, January 9 at 10 am: Registration coming in December
  • Saturday, February 13 at 10 am: Registration coming in January
  • Saturday, March 13 at 10 am: Registration coming in February
Location: Guilford Mackintosh Park and Marina - 1345 NC Highway 61, Whitsett, NC 27377
Fee: $5/person. Cash only. Payment will be collected at check-in on race day.
Ages: 6 and up. Ages 15 and under must be accompanied on the trail by a participating adult.

On race day, drive-thru style check-in will be available from 9:25-9:55 am. Racers should stay in the car and staff will check you in, collect race fees, and provide racers bibs and course information. There will be a 3-wave start to ensure social distancing at the start line and on the trail. Wave starts will be 10:00 am, 10:05 am and 10:10 am and selected at registration.

Health & Safety Protocols and Modifications related to COVID-19 

  • If you are sick or have been around someone who is sick, do NOT attend.
  • If you are 65 years or older OR have serious underlying medical conditions we encourage you to not participate per CDC guidelines.
  • All participants are expected to strictly adhere to social distancing rules, keeping at least 10 feet of distance from other people other than members of their family unit. 
  • Racers & staff are required to wear masks at all times (except while actively participating in the race).
  • Participants must bring their own water/sports drink/fuel. None will be provided by the race.
  • A 3-wave start will be implemented. Wave one will be runners. Wave two will be run/walkers. Wave 3 will be hikers. Racers will self-select a wave start during registration. 
  • Racers should not approach the start line until 3 minutes before their wave start time and keep a distance of at least 10 feet between each person prior to the race start and continue to wear masks until they start the race.
  • Racers should stay on the right side of the trail except when passing and allow plenty of space when overtaking others or for oncoming runners/hikers.  Racers should announce when passing to allow for maximum space. Slower-paced racers step off the trail if possible when being passed.
  • Restrooms with handwashing facilities are available at the start area. 
  • Spectators are encouraged to stay home or stay in their vehicles. Gathering at the finish line will not be allowed. 
*Any cancellations due to weather (or otherwise) will be announced on the Facebook event and all registered participants will receive an email notification.

*If you register and your plans change and can no longer attend, please email us so we can open your spot to another racer.


STEWARDship Tips

While you are hiking remember to be good steward of our parks and trails! Here are some tips to use while you are using parks and trails.
  • Trash your trash, don't leave it behind.
  • Leave what you find, take only pictures.
  • Respect wildlife.The park or trail is their home and you are only visiting.
  • Be kind to other visitors and users. 
  • Keep your pet on a leash.
Of all the paths you take, make sure a few of them are dirt.