Lately the weather has been easing up, so I started looking around for my first race of the season. Back in Charleston, the “season” is actually more like 11 months, but in Vermont its a bit shorter. After looking around on Active.com, I found two really small races for this weekend. The one I chose was the 5K Run/Walk to Benefit Vermont HOBY. Cara wasn’t feeling well on race day, so I ran this one solo.
This was a small race at St. Michael’s College, apparently organized by high school students. Wait, I should correct that sentence. I meant really, really small. Just a few cones on a double-loop through the college campus and a high-school kid with a stopwatch at the end. Also, my Garmin says that we only ran 2.94 miles, so I’m not sure if we can trust their measurements. Still, the kids were well-organized and everyone was in a good mood. Even better, the weather was fantastic.
Another good point was the price. Fifteen dollars is a low price for an adult registration, but it’s a self-aware price. This was a small race, so they charged a little less and skipped the race shirt to keep their overhead down.
These high school kids did a much better job than the B.U. students did at my last student-organized 5K race. In Boston, I paid a standard race price to run in a public park among bicyclists, roller bladers and other folks who were just running in the park for free. Even though there was a shirt for that race, I walked away feeling like I had been ripped off. Maybe Boston University can learn a thing or two from the kids at HOBY.
The course was simple, but fun. We ran through a big green field past a soccer team, down a bit of paved road, along the fence, through a small wooded area and back to the field. That was only 2.5km, so we did it again. I didn’t get bored, though. Things changed enough to keep me interested, especially in the wooded area. (Watch out for roots, folks. Trail runs can be tricky.)
After the race, there were bagels, doughnuts, water and other goodies, and even a small raffle where someone won a Keurig Coffee Machine. (Of course, I won nothing. I had a defective ticket.) Over all, this was a stellar event. Very friendly, very fun, and very well-organized. Nice job, folks. I’m glad I gave you fifteen dollars.