I recently ran The Color Run a.k.a the happiest 5k on the planet and it was a blast! I will start off by saying that I ran this race for free (more on that later) and it was held in a much more scenic location than last year – at the Waterfront Downtown! It was also held a little bit earlier this year so that it could be in conjunction with the MLB All Star Weekend events. The only downfall to all of this was parking. Parking downtown is usually a drag and this day was no different. It took me almost 20 minutes to find a spot, but I found a free one fairly close. And I even parallel-parked…like.a.boss. Holla!
So on to the race. Since I spent a little extra time looking for parking, I ended up running in the 8:00 am wave, which wasn’t so bad cause everyone seemed fun and I also ran with a fellow Stroller Warrior as well as my mini. There was a DJ close to the start line getting everyone pumped and throwing out t-shirts and whatnot. He couldn’t throw very well so I suggest he obtains one of those tshirt canister gun things for next year. It would also make him look a whole lot cooler. The race pretty much started on time and we were off!
The course was a big loop through the Embarcadero and downtown. It started off a little crowded as we were navigating through narrow pathways along Seaport Village, but it eventually widened up and I was able to pass others pretty easily. The first stop was blue, then green with a water station and very enthusiastic volunteers. The water stations also played heart-pumping music which really made the race feel like a party.
I didn’t get too blasted at these stations although one of the blue volunteers did pelt me in the face and ear pretty good. They also were very cautious not to throw any in my daughter’s face and she loved going through all of the color stations. The next stop was orange and then we finished with pink before crossing the finish line.
We were greeted at the finish line with medals and extra color packets to throw around and directed towards a water/Gatorade station. Then it was party time! There was a large stage with a DJ (one that I actually liked) keeping the energy flowing with dance music and extra swag opportunities. There were also lots of photo ops with various props and signs as well as food trucks and even a cell phone charging station! It was definitely a nice touch! The Runicorn made an appearance along with the Anthony Sullivan – The OxiClean guy!
The event wrapped up around 11am and then it was time for the party to end. 😦 Overall, I really enjoyed this race much better than last year’s. The location was much more scenic compared to last year’s race in the Qualcomm stadium parking lot. There also seemed to be a lot more photo props and food choices. I snagged a gourmet chocolate popsicle for $3 from Steel City Pops and it was delightful!
Also, the race course was actually 3.1 miles which is great because last year it was less than 2.5. The only bummers were the parking issues and there were more color stations at least year’s event. I’m not much for gimmick runs, but I have fallen in love with the Color Run and will definitely do it again in the future! It’s a great event for the whole family and a good excuse to get messy and go to a party at 8am!
*So, how did I run the race for free? I volunteered at packet pick-up the day before the race! It actually was a lot of fun as it felt more like a pre-party since everyone picking up their packets was super excited about the event and I really just felt positive vibes all around. Packet pick-up was at The Headquarters in Seaport Village and I took a 4 hour afternoon shift. Things got pretty hectic as it seemed like everyone came at once, but it was a well organized event and the craziness made the time go by super fast. We were rewarded with water, snack bars, and a free race entry! You can even volunteer with your kids so I recommend it if you are trying to save some money on race fees! It’s also a great way to help out with an awesome event or obtain some volunteer hours even if you don’t plan to run in the race.
Now, what was the SWAG?!
I will say, last year’s swag was a bit more exciting…but I still prefer this year’s event.
~A clear bag to protect your valuables from the color during the race
~A sweet headband
~A soft, stretchy tshirt (they are one of the few shirts I actually like to wear)
~Water cups – okay this isn’t really swag, but I thought these were the most adorable water cups!
~Sunglasses – Note: I paid $5 for these but I decided to splurge a little since I wasn’t paying for the race.
~A beautiful medal
~Amazing weather and awesome scenery!
And running with friends makes the Color Run that much sweeter! Especially running with another Stroller Warrior!
“Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof…” (Pharrell Williams) Now that song can be stuck in your head, too. 😉 You’re welcome.
See you at the next event!