- 3 miles/5K
- Trail Race
This was the third year of the small race. The packet pick up was a the Runner's Forum (local running store). Every participant received a long sleeve t-shirt that had a beaver on the front, and had every participant's full name on the back. I ran the race with my wife and my two daughters (one is 8, the other is 5). They both got a kick out of the shirt and to see their name on it. For a small race, they were nice shirts.
The race started at 4:30 with the goal that everything is wrapped up at 5:30 as the sun is going down and the moon is rising. We had to be there 15 minutes prior for a discussion of the course, and then walked across the covered bridge (the only remaining covered bridge in the county) to start on the other side. The race started with a gun shot without any countdown, which took us offguard. Since we were running together (and I was pushing a stroller) this was not much of an inconvenience to us compared to how I would have felt had I been shooting for a top place.
It was an out and back course of roughly 1.5 miles, winding along the trails and through the woods along the river. There were some slight rolling hills, but was a fairly flat course. The lead runners were from local high schools, but the majority of the runners were newbies or runners who typically wouldn't place at larger events. With it being an out and back, there were some spots when runners were returning where the trail was kind of tight.
There was one water station, right about in the middle, but just on one side of the trail. This made it treacherous for runners going out as they had to potentially cross in front of runners coming back.
Coming out of the woods at the end, there was about 200 meters of straight away to the finish line. This allowed fans to crowd the area and cheer on runners as they were finishing, which was pretty neat for a small race. All finishers received a small medal with the race name and a beaver on it. It was a first medal for my daughters, and they thought it was really great.
I would recommend the race to local people. It definitely had a small town feel and would be a race that I will do again in the future (I live within 15 minutes of the course). It was also great set up for a family race. However, if the course was lengthy drive away I probably would skip it.