- 3 miles/5K, 6 miles/10K, 13.1 miles/Half Marathon, Other
- Road Race
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The Runner’s World Half Marathon was the final race in the Hat Trick for me. I received entry to the hat trick to review as part of the BibRavePro program. The course was a really fun course traveling throughout Bethlehem. I had taken it easy during the 5K and 10K, saving my energy for the half. No part of the course was that boring. Portions of the course ran through many of the historic areas, including the Historic Moravian settlement, the Historic Hotel Bethlehem, and portions of the original 1741 settlement. The course had some early longer hills, but the back portion was largely downhill overall which made for a great race. Even the residential portions had a lot of spectators cheering you one. One of my favorite was a little old lady, who had one of those walkers with a chair in a large coat ringing a cowbell in 40 degree weather. THAT is some support. The course included plenty of water stops and med tents as well as some on course entertainment, including pep bands, bagpipes and DJs. The only on-course issue was at the very end, which mimic the 5K and 10K courses, there were so many people leaving via the course route, it was hard to know where to go. I knew from the past two races before, but I had to help direct a lady in front of me which way to go in the last half mile. The course had the same great finish by the steel stacks with the large shoots and Runner’s World staff on the mics with plenty of cheering. At the finish there was a band, Sunshine Symphony playing some great covers as well as a beer garden from Saucony Creek Craft Brewery. The post race food included bagels, bananas, Subway cookies, raisins, pretzels and mini muffins. That was a huge selection that was great to have.
The parking for the Runner's World events was interesting. Parking was spread throughout a couple of different lots. A lot of the lead up made it sounds like there was hardly any near the start, but they seemed easy to get a spot by word of mouth. I parked at an outer lot, which provided a free shuttle that was easy enough to get in and out from.
The expo was smaller than some I had been to, but had quality. KT Tape was there, offering free tapings, and I received a pair of compression arm sleeves for free. There was even a brewery offering samples, which may be unusual at most expos, but welcomed by me. Saucony Creek Craft Brewery was the brewery for the beer tent after the half, so that was the reason.
Overall, the whole weekend was amazing, capped off with a fantastic half marathon. I even finished with a PR after running two other races. I loved the event and plan to be back in the future.