Catch the Leprechaun (aka Eric Ruckel of Mount Pleasant

Eric Ruckel, the go-to leprechaun for the Catch the Leprechaun 5K, cheers on back-of-the-packers in the 2015 race. (File/David Quick/Staff)

Saving open, green space is in the best interest of those who like to run, bike or hike for health and physical fitness.

One local group has combined green space and fitness, as well as fun, into one event for the last six years.

The East Cooper Land Trust is holding its annual Race & Roast, which includes a 5K trail run and an oyster roast at Oakland Plantation in Mount Pleasant on Sunday. The run starts at 12:30 p.m. and the roast at 1 p.m.

For those who don’t want to run or don’t want to roast, there are options to do just one of the two activities. The fees ranges from $15 to $50.

The roast, which includes all-you-can-eat oysters, chili, hot dogs and beer, runs until 4 p.m. It will feature music by Hans Wenzel and the Eighty Sixers. The event is one of two main annual fundraisers for the trust.

The 132-acre Oakland Plantation is among the properties that the East Cooper Land Trust has helped conserve via an easement.

Other recent efforts have included preserving the 94-acre Thornhill Farm in McClellanville in 2014 and a quarter-acre beachfront lot on Sulliivan’s Island last year, as well as creating the master plan for an 80-mile East Cooper trail, envisioned to connect the Cooper and Santee rivers via a bike and pedestrian facility.

A mile-long leg of that trail atop a sewer line project is under consideration now by Mount Pleasant officials in front of The Market at Oakland, a shopping center that once was part of Oakland Plantation.

Current weather forecasts for Sunday call for rain in the morning, clearing just in time for the 5K and oyster roasts.

Two classics

The stalwarts of late winter in the Charleston road racing scene, once again, fall on the same date.

The Summerville Family YMCA's Shamrock Shuffle, long-known as the Flowertown Festival races, will mark its 37th year on Saturday in downtown Summerville.

The event includes a 5K that starts at 7:50 a.m, a 10K at 8 a.m. and a 1-mile at 9:15 a.m. Late registration fees are $15 for the 1-mile and $40 for the 5K and 10K.

Also on Saturday, Bishop England High School will hold its 19th annual Daniel Island 5K Race and Walk at 9 a.m. The fees are $25-$35 and proceeds go to maintaining the track.

40 Days of Bridge Run

The Cooper River Bridge Run and Walk continues its celebration of its 40th running, set for April 1, with more events in its 40 Days of Bridge Run promotion.

It continues with a “Soles for Souls” program 4-7 p.m. Thursday at the Pickled Palate in Mount Pleasant. Donate a pair of gently used shoes for the Soles for Souls program and receive a free pint of adult beverage.

Also, The Foot Store will host a free Good Form Running Clinic 8-10 a.m. Saturday at its 1909 U.S. Highway 17 location in Mount Pleasant.

The Leprechaun returns

After a year hiatus, due largely to construction at Patriot’s Point, the St. Patrick’s Day-themed Catch the Leprechaun 5K returns to Mount Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park on March 15.

The only catch, however, is that the event will be held on the Wednesday before St. Patrick’s Day, not the Thursday before as in past years. The 5K starts at 6:30 p.m.

The race has been held 12 times in 14 years. It originally was held in Park West and skipped a year before being moved to Mount Pleasant’s Waterfront Park.

Participants are urged to arrive at the park by 5:45 p.m. because roads near the park will begin closing at 6 p.m.

The fee is $30. The event includes food, beer and entertainment after the run. All proceeds will benefit Racers for Pacers and HEART Artist Guild & Theatre Company.

Contact David Quick at 843-937-5516. Follow him on Twitter @DavidQuick.