Springville Extreme Quarry Run

2017 Springville Extreme Quarry Run 6k

The 2017 event took place Saturday, August 12 at 8 am. The 6k run is part of Springville fun days. (This is in Springville, IA.) It was a great summer day for a race, the sun was shining and morning temps were near 60 degrees.

The weekend was full of races to choose from in my area, all shorter distances. I choose this one as I was excited to take on the challenge of running through the quarry. I also heard the RunIowa podcast with race director Joel, and it peaked my interest further.

I woke up early and had some toast, one slice with peanut butter and one slice with jelly, topped it off with the usual black coffee. I was on the road by 6:30 am for the 45 minute drive to Springville. I had never been to this town.

Gear: Orange Sparkle Athletic Skirt, adidas shorts, *last minute change to Lululemon shirt, XX2i sunglasses, Aftershokz Trekz Titanium, Garmin Fenix 3, Spibelt, Zensah pineapple socks, New Balance Shoes, Bibrave hat. *I also realized when I arrived at the race, that my outfit was supporting the school colors.

It was easy to find where the race started, even though the online registration information said “downtown.” I just kept making turns and found the downtown. I was able to find a spot to park on a side street about a block away, and of course it was free.

I walked to pick up my bib and timing chip, I also got a short sleeve race shirt. There was a discounted rate for no shirt too. Race day registration was available for around $35.

There were 2 port-o-potties set up near the packet pick up area. Previous year race shirts were also FREE for the taking. A pancake breakfast was in this area too for a small fee. People wondered about before the race start.

I ran into Joel before the race and he asked if I was going to write a review… I told him the pressure was on… lol. I also met twitter friend Amy (@amykeating05.)

this is actually a post race photo

Near 8 am, people headed for the starting mats. Then there were some announcements, but I heard none of them. The microphone was not very loud and the people were very chatty. They did quite when the National Anthem was sung.

I really didn’t have a grand plan for this event. However, since I had some background on the event, I wanted to “race” the hill. As I mentioned above, the race runs through the Wendling Quarry. This is the only time the quarry shuts down, and non employees are allowed access without a hard hat. As part of the race, you run DOWN into the quarry, through the quarry, and then through a tunnel, to turn around and run UP and out of the quarry. There is a King / Queen of the hill challenge, where timing mats are thrown down at the bottom, and the fastest person up the hill is crowned. I was going to give this a go!

This was also not my first go at the 6k distance. Way back when I ran the Drake Relays 6k, and I looked at that time to see if I could set a new PR.

With those things in mind, I didn’t push too hard until I saw the hill. The race was an out and back, and the first stretch was an uphill section. We were told to stay left of the cones that marked the course. They were easy to follow along with the arrows spray painted on the pavement or chip n seal surface.

The course flattened out, and then there was the water stop near the mile mark… which were paper cups, YAY! This is also where I got the first look into the quarry, but couldn’t really gauge the hill … so just kept motoring on. The surface also changed to dirt with gravel.

Then all of the sudden, I saw the blue timing mat on the top of the hill… and at the same time I was descending. I almost have a harder time on the downhill than the uphill, I am soo fearful of blowing out my quads…and after 3 Blue Ridge Marathons, ouch!

I wound down through the quarry and the leaders were on their way back, yet no one had started the climb. I yelled some positive words to people I passed, then it was time to run the tunnel. This is actually a natural bridge that was created to get under Hwy 151.

It was dark in the tunnel and there were blinking, lighted cones in the center. Ok, so I took my sunglasses off and I had no problems seeing. In fact, so many races through McCormick Tunnel in Chicago, and this was a breeze. Also even footing on the gravel/ dusty surface.

I looped back around and was on the way back to the finish. There were many volunteers on course in the quarry too, even though there was no confusion about where you should be running.

Then it was time to conquer the hill… so I started pushing the pace a little, and as I climbed I pushed more, then it came to the point where I had to use my arms, and I was passing people. I really felt good, until I came to the top…. I had to walk… WHEW!!! what a climb in a short amount of distance…. looking at the Strava data…

After the short walk, I stopped at the water stop and took a sip, and kept moving… It was hard to push the pace again. It was an uneventful trot into the finish line.

I finished near 34 minutes (not a PR, I shouldn’t have walked)… I got a small printout of my results; but that really wasn’t what I was concerned about, I wanted to know the hill climb times.

After some milling about and grabbing a bottle of water and granola bar, they did the awards before everyone was finished. The overall winners were announced first, and both male and female were awarded an engraved quarry rock. They were really cool!

Then it was the age group awards, and finally the King & Queen of the Hill awards. Which were a little confusing…but I did not win. I ran the hill in 1:45 and the female winner ran 1:20. DANG!

I learned that after the race there was going to be a parade. Luckily for me I had no sweaty running clothes to change into in my car.

I met up with some fellow Corridor Running Board members – Joel (oh hey the RD of this race) and Michael. We talked “shop” and then the parade started. It was a nice little parade. I love small town events!

It was then time to make the trek back to Iowa City. I did so hitting up the bulletin boards at the Casey’s Convenience Stores with some New Bo Run race flyers. (Hey, you want a flyer to post? Or hey sign up for the race!)

After a stop in Mt. Vernon, I came upon a tractor cade or something. You know old tractors that are following each other… yeah they went on and on and on forever on the side of the road. Seriously, if you never leave your house, you miss so much.

I am getting sidetracked…. To bring it back around, I would recommend this race to everyone. With so many 5ks it’s nice to have something a little different.



Beer Run!

Hey – some fun news… a beer run! That’s right… show up, run, drink a beer!

As you might know this past spring I was asked to be a “Captain” for the midwest region of the BibRave program. I am happy to serve this “post” with my friend Heather. If I am being honest, the midwest region of pros are the best!!! I think my favorite part of racing is meeting them in real life. Seriously, if you are racing with them, make a point to say hi!

Ok, I am getting carried away, I do that a lot. So what does a Captain do… well lots of things, but one is an opportunity to host some fun meetups throughout the year, and while it will be tough for Heather and I to co-host an event… we will do our best to accommodate.


Alright the details!!

What: Beer Run ( or social run, ending at a taproom)

When: Wednesday, July 19th, 2017. 6:00 pm.

Who: you!

Where: meet at the Big Grove Taproom, 1225 S. Gilbert St.  Iowa City

Why: Because running is fun, and beer is good.

How: ok, how about just the details… Please arrive at the Big Grove Taproom around 6pm (near the entrance – in back) some announcements will be made. We will then walk around to the start of the trail (on the other side of the creek.) Then it’s time to run/walk/move. The pathway goes around the Terry Trueblood recreational area, if you want to do the total distance it is near 5.5 miles. If you want to go out and back 1 mile, that is fine too.

Really the idea is you show up, do some physical activity, and have a social afterwards. All paces are welcome, and it you just want to walk for 10 minutes that is fine too. Not a beer drinker? That’s ok, come for a soda.  Have a dog? bring them too!

Amy and I drinking a post race brew at the Key West Half Marathon

If you can, please RSVP to this FB event page

Interact 5k

Interact 5k – Race Review

For my official review – check out bibrave.com

Josh and I happened to be in Guttenberg and stumbled upon the schedule of events for the summer Stars and Stripes Celebration the town was having, it mentioned a 5k. I actually ran this event 2 years ago, and hadn’t seen any information online about it, so I was glad we saw the flyer.


not sure if this was the actual name of the race?

The 2017 race was held on July 2, in Guttenberg, IA and started at 7 am. It was a gorgeous summer day, cool yet humid.

I am not sure this needs any explanation, but Josh and I walked/ran to the race start, it was just around 1.5 miles or so, but all down a giant hill. We walked most of it as the hill is along a busy highway and the path is on a steep bluff, running is challenging.

We made it to the Gazebo for registration. Along with missing the information online, I am not sure there was any place else you could register than race day. The registration table had some course maps.

This was an easy process, step up to the table, fill out a form, hand over $15. That was it…but you also got no shirt and no timing chip, just a bib. Easy peasy.

There were real bathrooms that are part of the river park, open to use. If you drove to the race, parking was easy to find on the streets.

The race was delayed a few minutes as the organizers were still entering registrants into their phone. The race is put on by high school kids, so maybe that is why there was the laid back atmosphere. They were raising money for a charity.

Everyone lined up behind the chalk starting line, and after a few words, we were told to “GO.”

The course is on paved surfaces in the city limits. There were no major potholes or hazards to watch out for.

Along the course were yard signs with information about binge drinking and underage drinking.  There was one water stop. The intersections were manned with volunteers or members of the fire department.

I thought I would give my best shot at racing this…heck why not? I actually didn’t feel like I started too fast, but I kept pushing myself. By the time I had climbed one of the few inclines to run the levy along the water, I was feeling the humidity.  UGH! However, it was just one foot in front of the other, plus the views along the water were great!!! Then the course went behind and into the Lock and Dam area.

I still had about a mile to go, and it was the most boring part of the course, through the residential area…and with only 44 race participants, it really was extra boring…. at one time I hopped I was headed the right way, but I could see a volunteer in the distance.

I then turned to make the run down the home stretch. I kept pushing it. I hit stop on my Garmin at the chalk drawn finish line, and that is when my Garmin also buzzed for 3 miles. Eek… a little short, and my time was 26:53. I will take it though, I had a sub 9 minute mile pace.

I met up with Josh at the gazebo, and we discussed our races over a bottle of water. I wasn’t too hungry, but there were bananas and granola bars available. We snapped some photos and cheered on runners while we waited for results.

When everyone was done, we sat at a picnic table for the awards in the gazebo. They handed out the top 3 overall in male and female, speedy people!!! I think there were separate awards for kids too.

It was only 8:30 ish when all this was said and done, so before we made the trek back to the house on top of the hill, we browsed the farmers market. We each got a pastry, and snagged some coffee.

The walk back up the hill was fun… but by 10 am, the adventure was over. I like races that start early enough to allow you to still have most of your day.

Would I run this again? Yes, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to get there, if I am in town, I will drop the $15 for a fundraiser.

Ganzo’s 2017

Ganzo’s Cinco De Mayo 5k – Race Recap


The 2017 5k was on Saturday, May 6th – GASP! Right, it wasn’t on the 5th of May… but some how we all managed… The race started at 9 am after the kids race at 8:30. It was a nice sunny day, around 50-60 degrees, oh and it was in Davenport, IA.

For a no frills review – bibrave.com

I was no stranger to this event, in fact when I ran the race in 2014, I was an award winner in the costume contest. Since then the race leadership was taken over by the guy who puts on the Quad Cities Marathon. The race still benefits the Autism Society of the Quad Cities.

I made it to Davenport just before 8 am. I still had to get my packet, and that closed at 8:30. Parking was a little different this time around, but available across the highway at the high school for free.

Packet pick up was quick and easy. I told the volunteers my bib number, from an email I received the week before. There were computers set up to register too, I think the race topped out over $40, but you get a medal, and a post race PAR-TAY!

I took my plastic bag full of too many race flyers… seriously there are too many things I don’t need. Anyway, I took my things, which also included a soft – short sleeve- unisex tee, a koozie, a pen and my bib with timing strip; back to my car. Then it was back across the highway again, to wait for the race to start.

While I waited, I met up with my sister and niece. Of course, my niece didn’t want to run the kids run, until they showed up to the race…. too late. We did cheer the kids on. Then we ran into Kevin, and chatted until we had to get into the corrals.

The corrals were jammed with people, including people with strollers and walkers just lined up where they wanted. Everyone was ready to go at 9 am, but then there were announcements – first from the race director, then it was the charity spokesman, then the mayor, I think the restaurant owner said a few words, then it was time for a live singing for the National Anthem, then the mayor told us how he was going to start the race…. I know right, just start already….

The race was finally on!!! I started out slow and steady…no goal, but the usual sub-30. I gave my sister and niece a high five on the way by. I then stuck with Kevin and we ended up running the race together.  As we ran, we saw Joel whiz by real quickly…. and then he disappeared.

The race started with a small up hill, and snaked through a residential neighborhood. There were some more rolling hills, and busy streets. There were 2, yes 2 water stops for a 5k, which is awesome!! We chatted and ran, thanked all the volunteers, and before we knew it were running the last stretch of the race.

We passed by my sister and niece again for another high five, and then crossed the timing mat, and we were done!!! The volunteer gave us our medals. There was no water or food in this area. If you wanted to continue walking the finishing chute, there were results to get printed out. My time was just over 29 minutes, yay another sub-30!

Joel appeared from no where, he just smoked the 5k!! All three of us went to watch finishers come in. We cheered on a lady running in a taco costume!! Then we saw Kelly zoom by.

It was time to go check out the post race events, and I wanted some water. The post race party was under a giant tent in the parking lot. An ID was required to gain admission, I am not sure if kids were allowed with a guardian. Funny story… I had once again misplaced my ID, and didn’t have it with me… and because I am me, I have a picture of my ID on my phone, they accepted that, and I had a wrist band to enter…. OK, so I don’t look 16 either.

The first thing to grab was a cold beer, Bud Light and a shot of tequila… well I grabbed those things too, cuz you know, fiesta! I didn’t have enough hands to grab anything else, so I took half the shot of tequila and washed it down with the Bud Light… cuz that’s what you do… I then decided I was done with that… so done… so I finally found that bottle of water I really should have been drinking. There were bananas and chips and salsa too. There was a taco truck set up for purchase of food.

Also under the tent was a stage with entertainment, live music!!  They also used this area to announce the awards. The party was happening!!

However, my sister was leaving, so I left the party to say “see ya later to them.” However, I hung around longer to chit chat with Joel, Kelly and Kevin. One of my favorite things about races is meeting my friends and hanging out!!

Sadly, that had to come to an end too, so we said our goodbyes… well mostly… I gave Kevin a ride home, via a stop at Dunkin Donuts. Had to get some coffee and munchkins.

This next part I am only documenting for personal purposes, and hope it never happens again. On the way home I had a slight headache develop. I had thoughts of – maybe I shouldn’t have taken half that shot, but it was only half a shot… or did I drink enough water? Did I lose too much salt? Not enough sleep? (I stayed up the night before to watch Breaking 2) Why do I have a headache? 

I usually get a bad headache or migraine due to hormones or dehydration / lack of salt. However, I just don’t think this was the underlying cause, as it got worse. I even took a nap, which usually helps, but this time I woke up and it was worse. Then since I just woke up, I wasn’t tired… so it was hard to rest… but I was in a lot of pain. I tried to drink some Gatorade and eat a granola bar, but felt so nauseous.

I was also worried if I would be able to run my half marathon the next day. I did some more lounging, and took more Advil. I really hate taking too much of that crap. I think I nodded off again. I finally felt like eating and ate an entire tub of mashed potatoes – you know half marathon the next day.

I finally went to sleep…. and I guess you will have to keep reading to find out if I made it to my half marathon….

Back to the subject of this post. Overall, Ganzo’s is a great spring race, Don’t let the higher cost deter you. It’s a race for all abilities, fun and organized well. Only suggested change would be an upgrade from Bud Light.

Happy Easter

Easter Egg Scramble 5k – 2017 – Race Review

The 2017 race was on April 15 in Davenport, IA. Race start was 9 am, and it was sunny, humid and pushing 65 ish degrees.

I am no stranger to this race, I have run this many times before, and it’s where my 5k PR stands – and it’s been a long time since I’ve run that time.

In addition to the 5k, there are some kids races and an egg hunt. So, it’s a good excuse to hang out with my niece as well as my other runner friends in the Quad Cities area.

Gear: Magenta Sparkle Athletic skirt, Wal-mart tank, Adidas boy shorts, Garmin Fenix 3, ProCompression socks, XX2i France 2 sunglasses, Brooks Ghost 9, spibelt, Aftershockz Trekz Titanium headphones, Run Madtown hat. – oops didn’t take a flat runner picture

Race day:

I left my house and set out to drive the 50 minutes. I wanted to make sure to see my niece race, before the 5k started. I also needed to grab my packet. Race day packet pickup FTW!

I parked at the marina across the main road, it’s a short walk, but it’s free parking and there is plenty of it. Otherwise you need to come early to find something close on a nearby side street.

I had arrived with enough time to grab my packet- race day packet pickup FTW!! I got my drawstring bag with my unisex, short sleeve, soft tee, and bib. There might have been a flyer or 2 in bag, and I had a timing chip to attach to my shoe. I used the facilities and wondered around.

I spotted my sister and couldn’t miss my niece dressed in a silver, sparkly skirt and tall bunny socks! She’s a fashionista, prepared to run a fast 1/2 mile race. I was also glad I spotted them as they would hold all the crap I had acquired.

As we waited for the kids races to start, we saw our friend Kevin gearing up for the 5k. We all cheered as my niece ran her race, then it was time to line up for ours.

As I was entering the self seeded starting area, I spotted another friend, Kelly.  We chit chatted and then it was time for the race. There was no National Anthem, and then everyone was off.

Oh this race…. the first half mile or so is all up hill, it’s part of the Bix course too. I was one week out from a 50k and I had a marathon coming up in one week. I had my usual sub-30 goal, but didn’t want to break myself considering I was in recovery – taper – training mode.

After I made it up the hill, there was a nice flat section, followed by a really long down hill. (down hill is tough too) According to my Strava stats I actually ran a great second mile at 8:03…DANG!

Then I hit the last stretch, it was part of the main highway, and it was super windy, even had to turn my hat backwards…. I slowed my roll… It was also feeling really hot by now, that humidity was getting to me.

I came to the finish area to cheering from my sister and niece. The last hundred feet are all down hill, so you can cruise through the finish arch. However, once you cross the timing mat, the volunteer that hands you your medal tells you to take a hard right to get your chip removed. This is tough… it’s too squished up, you should be able to walk it out down the street first…

So, I made that turn and was on the search for some water as there are no aid stations on course. I did see a tent set up that was printing race results and the volunteers were clipping tags from shoes… I just bent over and pulled mine off…no one has time to wait, when you need some water. Luckily I found my sister, and she gave me the water bottle she had with her.

Kelly, Kevin and I then walked over to the post race party. It was hidden in a lot behind some buildings. There was a line that formed to get your post race goodies, including water. Ok, do I need to start carrying water for a 5k now? I know this time of year the weather is a crap shoot, but jesh, lol.

Once we reached the goodies we could get a Sam Adams Summer Ale, Breakfast burrito, Gatorade protein bar, bottle of water, sparkling water, and huge bottle of Gatorade. While a person really doesn’t need all these things, if you grabbed them all, they were hard to carry.

I had a post race beer, bottle of water and a burrito as I chatted with Kevin and Kelly, and then other runners as they passed by. A 2 person band played cover songs. There was no where to sit, except the ground. The burritos were really good!!! Awards were announced.

For an official race review – check bibrave.com

It was time for the egg hunt, so we departed this area and went to go make sure my niece was prepared to get us some candy….. er… ahem, fill her basket with candy. The egg hunt was on a ball field, and divided by age. She scrambled after some eggs and filled her basket. The organization gave each kid a basket that was already filled with candy too. (Some how I ended up with one of these)

Welp…all the fun was over…. or was it?

My sister tells us about her friend that opened up a new ice cream spot, just around the corner. We continue the fun and proceed to get some ice cream…. they opened up early for us.

We tasted some samples and decided what to get. I had a waffle cone with the raspberry lambic sorbet and topped it off with the key lime pie. SOOO GOOD!

After devouring our treats, we walked back to our cars, and went on our separate ways. Well almost…. Kevin and I went to get some coffee and hunt down some more Luvo meals. The online store finder (& my sister) said the Jewel Osco store in IL had them.

We found the meals, I stocked up. I hoped I could get them home before they all melted. I was happy to not have to bring my lunch to work for the next week.

I’ve said it many times before, but participating in races when you can meet up with your friends is the best. The day always leads to fun and adventure. So, while this race is on the pricier side, I will probably continue to do it so I can hang out with my friends and drink beer, eat burritos and ice cream.

Freezefest 2017

Corridor Running Freezefest 5k

I am so excited to have something to write about. I ran and volunteered at the Freezefest 5k or should I say “Warmfest.” (More on that later.)

As most of you know, I am on the board of my local running club, Corridor Running. This is the first race of the year for the club. In addition to running, and creating the playlist for the event, I was on board to take pictures, post to social media, shoot video and anything else they needed me to do.
For my official race review – check out bibrave.com

Gear: Ice Cream Sparkle Athletic Skirt, xx2i France2 sunglasses, Garmin Fenix 3, Go Pro, Adiddas boy shorts, Lululemon shirt, Corridor Running Trucker hat, spi belt,  2xu Vectr socks, aftershokz

The event always takes place in February, and it has a later start time of 11 am. It is in Marion, IA at Squaw Creek Park. This is mostly due to the weather. It can be cold or as we saw this year, record warmth, nearing 60 degrees.

*Personally, I would rather have a race start at 7 or 8 am. I run in all weather conditions, so I would just like to get up and get it done.

This is a smaller race, and it’s capped at 350 participants due to the lack of parking.. This means that packet pickup is the day of the race, which works out well because of the late start I was whining about above. Anyway…. the lodge allows room for an easy packet pick up as well as an area to get information about upcoming Corridor events & membership. It’s also a good location to stay warm, if the weather is cold. There is also indoor plumbing, however the system seems to get overwhelmed and backs up….but don’t fear there are extra, clean port-o-potties set up outdoors.

It was time to start the race. While there were no signs encouraging people to line up according to pace, everyone did an excellent job of self seeding.  Mark – the club president said some words, and then the National Anthem was sung live, however if you were in the back of the corral, you might not have been able to hear it.

With this being a 5k, my usual goal is to run it sub 30 minutes, however I had a Go Pro in one hand and my phone in the other. I wasn’t sure if I would be able to tackle all of this.

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The race course wasn’t too difficult, it was basically flat, and on all paved surfaces. Ok, so the finish was uphill and there were some potholes….but totally manageable. The course also has out and back type sections, so you can cheer on the others.

I crossed the finish line, while watching the clock…SUB 30!!! My official results:

After I was done running, I picked the camera back up and snapped some pictures of the award winners. Then I went to check out the post race food, since it was lunch time. Volunteers called the “cookie monsters” brought a lot of baked goods, and there were 2 different types of homemade chili. There were some sandwiches and fruit too. I waited too long and there wasn’t much food left, and I don’t care for chili, so I grabbed a cookie. There was also lots of beverages – bottled water, sodas, and some Miller Lite.

I really needed to get on my way, there was Hawkeye basketball game at 1pm… I was already late.

This is a great race! The price is right and it gets you out of the winter funk. The club does a great job too, everything runs smoothly. I also like getting to socialize with everyone. I also forgot to mention, a portion of the proceeds goes to benefit the Boys & Girls club.

See you at the next Corridor Running event, the Shamrock Shuffle – PS registration is still open. There is a 3.17k and a 6.24k. They could also use volunteers.

Keep up with Corridor Running: Website / Twitter / Facebook / Instagram & don’t forget to tag #corridorrunning




Amana 2017

The Amana Freezer 5k – 2017 Edition

This is my favorite winter race in eastern Iowa. You may have caught my previous posts about this, even calling it “January’s Hidden Gem.” Well 2017 didn’t disappoint.

In addition to the meat swag bag and the hospitality of Amana, IA, what makes this race so great is that the local running community comes out of winter hibernation.

So, it was a foggy and unseasonably warm day, temps over 40 degrees. This was a nice change from the freezing temps I have run this race in before.

Since I haven’t picked a training plan for my upcoming marathons – the IL Marathon and Grandma’s… I should probably do that….I didn’t have any goals, or a set amount of miles to run that day. After I arrived around 8:30 to pick up my packet and meat bag, I set out to run some pre-race miles, that ended up totaling 4 miles.

Gear: Sparkle Athletic skirt, Corridor Running hat, Brooks Ghost 8, Aftershokz, SpiBelt, Moving Comfort pullover, Adidas short, Procompression socks, Garmin Fenix 3.

I attached my bib to my belt, and the timing chip to my shoe and made my way to the starting line. This is where I saw running friend, Joel.  We chatted and then everyone was moving forward…ha we weren’t paying attention and someone jingled some bells and the race started.

A refresher on the course, it’s an out and back on the paved road, you run out to East Amana, circle around and come back to Amana. There is a hill when you get to East Amana, but nothing steep. The road is open to traffic, but the locals don’t seem to mind. The most scenic thing on the course is the occasional beer can in the ditch or the cow pasture. Hey, this is Iowa 🙂

I had an ok race for already logging 4 miles. My 5k goal is always sub-30 and according to my Garmin I finished in 28:05. I felt like I pushed my best, even though each mile split was slower… oh well, I had a year of distance running, it’s hard to get the speed back.

At the finish line, I saw a lot of friends from the 100 mile group and Corridor Running. I felt like a social butterfly. One of my favorite things about running is meeting the people.

The crowd moved towards the post race food and awards in the building where packet pick up took place. Usually it’s jammed packed, but since the weather was so nice, there was room to breathe.

There is always a great post race food spread, really quite a lot for a 5k. Clementines, bagels, bananas, fruit pizza, Fig Newtons, and cookies. Then there was bottled water and hot chocolate.

I chatted with more friends, including a reader of the blog, Hi Rosemary!! That was a nice surprise…as we chatted I chuckled as the lady tried to start the race awards. Every year it’s the same old problem, she has this microphone, but you still can’t hear her, and then she gets mad…I am still laughing. Someone eventually get her a bull horn, which you really can’t hear either as everyone is chatting.

We all stood around listening to the awards, then it was time for the raffle. I remember the year Laura won the bird seed and she didn’t want it… ha! I always am happy to win anything….and this year was my year, I won a bottle of wine, 2 wine glasses, and an opener!!  Joel was standing around with us too and he won a gift certificate for a bottle of wine too.  He really doesn’t drink wine, so he thought he would trade the bird seed winner….that didn’t work when the bird seed winner took her prize and immediately headed out the door. People want that bird seed!

Once all the prizes were handed out, it was time to redeem the Millstream Beer ticket that came with registration. The Brau Haus is located just across the street, and you just walk in and choose a craft beer or soda. I happily chose the Iowa Pale Ale. As I was leaving to drink my beer outdoors, someone asked “What is most similar to Coors Light or Miller Lite?” The guy pouring the beer chuckled, and said “tap water.” I laughed too.

I met Joel back outside and he was telling me how excited he was to tour Amana, and check out all the stores. The small town takes pride in their winter festival, so it is fun to check out all the shops. I couldn’t stay though, I had to get back to Iowa City and the Iowa Woman’s Basketball game. GO HAWKS!

I will always try to run this race. First, the meat bag! Second, the town rolls out the red carpet for the weekend. Third, the local running community wakes up for the year! Oh and the price is always right, around $25 (you can even get it for less if you want no meat bag or shirt)