- 3 miles/5K, 13.1 miles/Half Marathon, Virtual Race
- Road Race
- Event Website
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This is my second time at the event - last year, I was injured and had to drop from the half marathon to the 5K at the last minute.
Now in its third year, this event has definitely grown and is getting better and better. I love that its a destination weekend instead of just a race. It's held at a great time of year, and hit all the high points I look for in a running event. There is a half marathon and a 5K, which start together and both finish past the fountain in Forsyth Park.
OVERALL - This is a beautiful race. It's not too big and not too small. This year, the weather was perfect (lower humidity, breezy and cool), and it made the experience that much better.
TSHIRTS/SWAG - Participants receive some really great swag for this race. In addition to the gorgeous custom medal (distance specific), there is also a finisher's gift (this year was an expandable bangle, last year was a really nice tote bag and the year before was a gym duffel bag). Sponsors also give out gifts at the expo: complimentary bath fizzes from Nourish, string backpacks and ice packs from Publix, etc.
AID STATIONS - For the half marathon, there were plenty of aid stations - water and Powerade was served at both. There was one Honey Stinger gel station at around mile 8 or so, and three staffed med tents along the way. We were back of the middle of the pack and the volunteers were still out in force, the Powerade wasn't warm or watered down, and nothing was being broken down, which was really nice.
COURSE SCENERY - Gorgeous. Runners pass through downtown Savannah, then some residential neighborhoods, Daffin Park and back again. Trees, flowers, squares, architecture... it's all there. You can't beat a finish by the fountain in Forsyth Park. Absolutely epic!
EXPO QUALITY - The expo is nice and intimate, in the conference room of the host hotel. Some of Savannah's local favorites have booths and shopping set up. The primary focus is New Balance with apparel and shoes. Runners can also fuel, glide, visors and other last minute gear. There was also a a free strength training clinic at the expo, which provided some great information.
ELEVATION DIFFICULTY - No hills, but there were a lot of turns and out-and-backs on the course.
PARKING/ACCESS - I stayed in a hotel a few blocks' walk from the start line so access was easy. Free street parking is also available around the start/finish in Forsyth Park.
RACE MANAGEMENT - Course was well marked, well manned and well done. Great support from volunteers every step of the way. There was plenty of music along the course, and a great band on stage afterwards. Runners were treated to goodie bags from Publix with bottled water, banana and muffins as they crossed the finish line, and were then welcome to enjoy two complimentary drinks (beer or mimosas) afterwards.
On Sunday, the race also hosts a free yoga practice in Ellis Square. It's a great way to stretch and wrap up the weekend.
Can't wait to be back!