By Brooke Porter Katz
September 08, 2014

This fall, Chicago’s two airports give new meaning to the word runway. On September 21, Midway Airport is hosting the second annual Midway Fly Away 5K, benefiting the Special Olympics of Chicago. And on October 5, O’Hare International Airport gets in on the action with the O’Hare 5K on the Runway, which raises money for military vets through the Wounded Warrior Project.

The race at Midway happens right on the airfield, so runners will see planes lifting off and landing right next to them—plus they’ll get a peek inside a Southwest Airlines hangar. Click here to register.

O’Hare takes a different approach, using a decommissioned landing strip for the festivities, which include a 5K “fun walk” and the Take Off Trot for kids ages four to 10, in addition to the main event. Following the race, the airport hosts an outdoor community day, complete with live music, food from O’Hare’s top restaurants, and photo ops with a United Airlines plane. Registration ends soon.

Brooke Porter Katz is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @brookeporter1.

Photo courtesy of United Airlines Creative Services