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I have run the Hot Chocolate in Philly the past two years. This was my first year running the 5K instead of the 15K. If you know me, you know I love the longer distances but my 7 year old son wanted to run the 5K as his first 5K ever so of course I had to run with him!
Due to weather and having to pick up Niko after work, I just didn't have enough time to make it to the expo however I simply forwarded Niko and my confirmations to my sister and she easily got our stuff for us. It's really great when races allow that option. As usual the jackets were great and in my opinion the best yet. Nice thick, cozy material and thumbholes! My only wish was that they would have a kid size option because there was close to 200 kids under 14 that ran and I know Niko was pretty disappointed to not have a jacket that even remotely fits so that he can wear it around. I wear mine all the time because I love it so much and I know he would love to show it off to his friends. Otherwise I love all the swag!
Race morning was great as usual. You can easily find inexpensive garage parking or street parking within walking distance of the start. The race area is always bumping with music and it's pretty easy to use a potty before the race.
The course is part of the 15K and goes into the city for almost a mile then down MLK drive and finishes in front of the Art Musuem area. Not much aid is needed for a 5K but there was fluids and I was very happy to see a fully stocked candy station. In the two years that I ran the 15K, there was no candy anywhere on the course. Niko obviously loved this! I found the finish of the 5K to be a little dull compared to the 15K or maybe it was just this year. There wasn't any real definitive marking indicating the finish as there usually is. We did however receive all the same chocolate goodies which we all thoroughly enjoyed.
All in all it was a fun time and we will definitely run it again.
Here's more about my personal race: http://runningmarathonmom.blogspot.com/2017/04/2017-philly-hot-chocolate-nikos-first-5k.html