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Bastille Day Run... and Block Party?

So... the lengthily titled Bastille Day 5K/8K Run/Walk & Block Party happened last night.
I think I hit the high points (or low points, as the case may be) in my NewCity review, but it wasn't a very well-organized event.

But here's some additional observations and complaints:
  • Because the 8K course was an out-and-back it took up both lanes on the Lakefront Trail for a while. There were several bikers riding down the middle of the trail, between the two lanes of runners. I've never seen that before.
  • At the entrance to Belmont Harbor, there was a long line of cars backed up in either direction. When I ran past, the woman in the front car was standing beside her vehicle yelling at the guy stopping traffic, "HOW IS THIS NOT AVOIDABLE??!?!?" I don't know what she meant by that, but she was super-pissed and I almost wanted to stop running just so I could listen to an amazing (and most likely nonsensical) rant.
  • The 5K and 8K courses rejoined at the end and created a bottleneck. The 5K started 15 minutes after the 8K but that just gave 8K runners enough of a head start to be back at the re-joining point at the same time as 5K runners. This made the finishing chute pretty crowded. One runner I talked to waited around 10 minutes just to get out of the chute.
  • There were only bananas at the finish line... I hate bananas. If you love bananas then you were totally covered, though.
This shit is bananas
  •   Finally, this sign was a total lie because there was NO FOOD:
I talked to a number of runners after the race that seemed pretty unhappy with this whole event, particularly the lack of at least one free beer ($4 for a can of Old Style?), no food and the incredibly unorganized gear check. I'm assuming race organizers are taking note and recognizing that people weren't happy about this, so we'll see what happens next year.

Comments

  1. How much is too much to pay to race on the narrow Lakefront Trail alongside bikers and rollerbladers? I love it when they have dual distance races and the two distances converge. The faster runners from one distance have to slow down in order to weave through walkers and slow runners doing the other distance. Better to find surface street races of a single distance that are run on wide-open and closed to vehicular/bike/rollerblade traffic.

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  2. I had fun! Mostly because I knew to avoid everything except for the Fleet Feet tent and the actual race. This was my 3rd Bastille day in a row, and have learnt to jsut stear clear of the after party.

    I think we have to go into summer races on the lakefront path with the expectation and understanding that motorists will be annoyed, cyclist and bladers will be cocky and generally unaccomodating, and just enjoy the ride.

    Also, sorry I didn't give you a meet up location, my group was a little unorganized ourselves! I want to host a blogger meet up soon!

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  3. Hmm. Too bad it wasn't a good event. I didnt know much about it but will likely pass on it in the future. Will go head over to your other review now.

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  4. This was the third year I've done this race and I think it would be safe to say that it has a good history of being unorganized. Every year they fix some of the problems from the year before, but then new issues pop up. They did have cupcakes last year, disappointed there weren't any this year. And $4 for a beer is outrageous! It's almost like being inside Wrigley field! It would have been neat to run into you, but the post race events were so crowded I thought I was going to have a panic attack and couldn't distinguish faces.

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