This is my review of the 5k that I did on Sunday.
I managed to somehow be the first one to pick up my packet on Saturday, so I didn’t have to wait in any lines or anything like that. The pick up was held at Big River Running Co. in O’Fallon. They were also doing the race management for this run. The t-shirt they gave out was actually pretty cute! It had a multi-colored print (green & blue rays with a brown cat & dog), which I thought was nice, something that some race don’t seem to think about. The race swag-bag actually had some pretty decent stuff in it as well. There were some dog treats and a couple flyers and a coupon or two as well as a plastic water bottle.
The race was held at Quail Ridge Park, which is a really pretty place and not far from home. So the drive wasn’t too bad. I parked a little farther away, because they had mentioned if you park too close to the start, you wouldn’t be able to leave until after a certain time (makes sense with all the people and dogs milling around). It was a pet-friendly event, so I brought my little BooBoo dog with me. Pretty much everyone did a good job of minding their dogs, and there weren’t any fights or much barking either. There was a simple starting line, and since the race wasn’t that big, the starting person just kind of talk into a bullhorn.
The Race and Course
The course was fairly hilly. But since it was paved, and wound through wooded parts as well as open parts of the park, it was very pretty. I wish there would have been one more aid station. But they had one with water for both the dogs and the people. Since it was there inaugural event, I’m sure they weren’t sure how many dogs to expect, but next year they might want to put out more than one bowl of water for the dogs, since some dogs (like mine) can get turned off by the scent of too many dogs on a water bowl.
I never felt crowded on the path and there were lots of places to take restroom breaks if you needed them in the park restroom areas. Also because it is a dog friendly park, there were places to get poop bags and throw them away fairly frequently along the course so you weren’t stuck holding a stinking bag forever!
They had a really nice post-race spread with chips, breads, fruit, water, and Powerade, which was kind of surprising since it was such a small race. The people taking your timing chip were very polite, and course support was really good with all the volunteers.
I really liked this race, and if it’s offered again next year, I will definitely participate. I give it an 8.5 on a scale of 1 to 10, simply because of the aid station, and slightly disorganized race start.
But like I said, it was I believe their inaugural event, and I’m sure next year will be even better than this one.
Bottom line, if you’re looking for a family friendly event, that you can include your dog in, this is a race you must partake in!