Latest reviews by Lisa

(2015)
"BEST TIME EVER"
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I did not run this race this year (ran in 2012 and 2014), but I volunteered this year as a nurse as a way to give back and experience it from the "other side" and I had the BEST TIME EVER. I was at aid station 11, mile 15 in the Medical Tent and saw the glory, the tears, the runners not giving up, the runners smiling, the fans cheering, I am proud to be a part of a HUGE running community and city who love each and every runner. I highly recommend running Chicago for the best tour of the city.

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(2015)
"Flat out and back course, great price, guaranteed to PR, needs to work on getting the result time correct though"
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This was the first time I ran the Park Ridge Charity Classic 5k run and it won't be my last. This 5k is also featured as a Chicago Area Runners Association Circuit Race, which is why I chose to run it. The entry fee was very VERY affordable, 20 bucks for non CARA and 17 bucks for CARA members and on race day the entry was a cool 25 bucks. The swag is a nice shirt, nothing fancy, but nice. There were also no "goodie bags" or medals at the end keeping the price low, which I personally like as at some of the some races the goodie bags are just advertisements for stuff/products i would never use, thus creating more garbage. I arrived this morning about 45 mins before the race to plenty of parking, FREE parking! Another bonus to this race. There were 4 ports-potties right by the start as well, none on the course. The race started right on time, which I think surprised people as we heard a gun go off and then we ran. The course was very flat, in and out with 2 aid stations, one going out and then the same one coming back in, with water. Simple for a 5k (once again, helping to keep the cost of the race down). The only beef i have is that the timing system/results were over 5 mins OFF, my garmin states one time and the results sheet states another. This was the problem for everyone. This is also the first time the race has used timing chips, so I'm sure everything will be ironed out, but for a CARA circuit race, the timing is very important. I promptly went back to the resulting table and was directed then to a van and the man in the van was very rude and shut the door on myself and a couple of other runners inquiring about the times as we were directed to do so. We then went to the onsite CARA tent to let them know the issue and they assured me timings would be resolved, thank goodness for my Garmin! Overall, for the price, the course, the nice shirt, it is a good race, they just need to iron out the onsite resulting or just don't do it. I got a PR today for 5ks for this racing season and was sad to see the HUGE discrepancy on the print out at the end. I def will run it in the future if they fix the timing issue for this race.

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(2015)
"Great fast and flat course, the rest is a joke"
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The Chicago Half Marathon is a great fast, flat race that is mostly ran on Lake Shore Drive. Just running on LSD is amazing it self and is the only reason why I ran this race and would ever tell another runner to run this race. The organization, or LACK of it, is embarrassing. My husband and I signed up for the race in June 2015, were happy to have the option of a shuttle bus to the site of the race in Jackson Park, where there is little to NO parking at all, so we enthusiastically signed up for the shuttle service from the Belmont El. La la la, training ensues, happy summer and we start getting emails regarding the race, shuttle service is still on, park hero is available for people to use to purchase parking, all is good. About a week prior to the expo and packet pick up, we get an email stating we are now in the millennium park shuttle pick up, no way, didn't sign up for it. I promptly emailed back, we had signed up for Belmont, please honor it. We get another email 1-2 days later saying that the shuttles are FULL, no changes will be made, done! After paying over $75 bucks a piece for this run and a shuttle, I was NOT happy. Long story short, and I could go on and on, we ended up not being able to use the shuttle, metra brought us to and from the race and the medal is ridiculously huge. The after party was a joke, the line to check IDs was over 40 deep with 2 people checking them and I will never run this race again nor recommend it. I am once again disappointed that this race was CARA certified, is CARA going down hill??? Take your money and run another half.

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(2015)
"Just "meh""
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I signed up for this race as it is a CARA Circuit Race thinking it would be up to CARA's standards and quality that I have seen in their races. The entry fee was great considering the distance ($50 bucks and a CARA member discount which covered the online registration fee of $4.95) and the hoodie that is included is pretty cool. I have never ran a half outside of Chicago and thought this would be a good one to start at. The drive from Chicago was super easy, parking was free, onsite and plenty. Numerous porta potties at the start/finish line which is always a plus. I also really liked that CARA was there to have member gear check. The race started promptly at 730am (surprised no National Anthem prior to the start) and the course was on the streets and roads in Lake Zurich and Hawthorne Woods. I was VERY surprised while running that there was still traffic allowed on the streets. The course is out and back, hilly and scenic. There was water/gatorade at about every 2-3 miles, super friendly volunteers manning them and a porta potty at about 2-3 aid stations while on the course (at least thats what i counted). Coming back to the finish, the traffic was MUCH more heavy than at the 730am start. I was very disappointed to finish the race 2hrs later to NOTHING but water and cups of gatorade at the finish. I asked numerous volunteers if there was any "runner bags" or the light breakfast as advertised on their website, the answer was "we ran out". Sigh. After running 13.1 miles for 2hr I was hungry. When all is said and done, i would NOT recommend or be signing up for this race again in the future. Maybe I am spoiled when it comes to expecting races of this distance (or any CARA race/certified race for the matter) to be a little better, but I guess with the low entry fee, you get what you pay for.

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(2015)
"Very well ran race"
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First time running this race and def NOT the last. Well organized race (CARA certified/Circuit Race), good scenery, loved ending up on the NW Ryan Field. The breakfast afterwards was great, the shirt was nice and plenty of free parking. I loved that there were different locations/times for packet pick up, too. Always a PR, too.

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