What an exciting week in Rochester! There was a lot going on – Spiderman 2 filming here and The Color Run making its debut in upstate, NY. Oh, and I did I mention the picture-perfect weather?
And so the scene was set for the Color Run 5k, which started at Frontier Field at 9 am on Saturday. I picked up my bib and shirt on Thursday. You also got a Color Run terrycloth headband, tattoo & color packet. Last year, I ran a Color Run in Columbus, Ohio, and was excited to run one again. Because a similar race, The Color Vibe, was just a few weeks ago, not as many people signed up for this race. According to the race director, this was their smallest race to date. But by small, she means over 6,000 people – which, in my book, is a pretty large turnout.
The enthusiasm and excitement at the race is contagious. People of all ages and sizes were excited to get out there and run, and, more importantly, get covered with color! The color is food safe cornstarch, so no worries.
The race started with a shout out to their charity partner Teens Living With Cancer. A person in a high tower got the crowd pumped up for the race, throwing goodies (Color Run sunglasses, socks, etc. to the crowd). I ended up getting a fanny pack for free! Finally, it was time to run (or walk). You run a little bit, then hit the color station. It’s a poof of color and then you run again til the next station. No Spiderman prop sightings, although it was nice to run downtown. Part of the route is the same as the route for the half marathon here in fall.
My team (Team Kiwi) started out strong and kept on going. My teammates were doing great and having fun. The crowd seemed to be enjoying it as well. Hint for future runners – if you want more color, stay to the right or left where the color throwers are. If you want less, run down the middle. There is one color thrown at each station, and, by the end, you look like a paint splattered mess. The route was mainly flat with one water stop.
After we finished, you could get water and free granola bars. You then could head to the stage area where they were throwing out more prizes and every 15 minutes or so doing a group color throw. There was music, dancing and a conga line. You celebrate by taking the packet of color given to you and throwing it in the air for a spectacular display. I even saw Elvis and a Unicorn runner (very bummed I don’t have a picture of the unicorn). You could get your picture taken and get the color cleaned off you with a leaf blower.
This race is festive and fun for everyone who just wants to get out there and enjoy being with friends and family. It’s not competitive- they don’t even have a time clock. For me, at this stage of my running, it’s perfect. This was my 68th race in the last 6 years, so I am a little burnt out!
Pictures speak louder than written words in this case, so I’ll stop writing and start posting. It’s hard to get pics while running, and my camera is not the best – but I did the best I could. I took 200 photos and narrowed down to a smaller set for this post. All the photos you see on this post can be enlarged if you click on them (worth it for the collage pics). Or, you can see my FB album or Google+ album.
Pros: A great race for the beginner or someone who wants a break from the grind of running or competitive 5ks. Parking was easy. Packet pickup was simple, even with the Spiderman filming in town. Very friendly race crew and race director. Well organized. Onsite store to buy Color Run merchandise- reasonably priced.
Cons: Like most theme races, this one is not cheap. Prices start at $35. Look for discount codes (Groupon, Living Social, etc) for deals or sign up early to save on registration.
Tips: Wear sunglasses and bring a bandana. Cover your phone and camera with the bandana or a ziploc bag. Think twice about wearing a GPS watch or bringing music- you never know what damage that dust can do.
As for my next race, I’m not sure when that will be. There is a cool race in Geneva that I will be covering in a month or so, but just as a spectator. Until then, stay colorful!
Oh, and sorry to the Spiderman fans for the day off from filming. They will be back on schedule on Sunday!
YNN coverage of race. I’ll post more media links as I find them, so check back if you want. Here’s video from the Democrat & Chronicle. WROC also did a story. And, I love this you tube clip of the race – nicely done!
P.S. If you missed this Color Run and want to do one close by, you could run The Color Run in Buffalo on August 17th.