Latest reviews by Kim Teter

(2018)
"Gasparilla 15K"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
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This is my third year running Gasparilla but my first time running the 15K.
The weather is always unpredictable. Last year was gorgeous, this year was hot and humid. If you are ever doing a race in FL make sure you check the dew point!

Expo - Gasparilla always has an awesome expo. Lots of vendors that sample everything from food, new products, to things you know and love. It is 2 days and has easy to attend hours. There is parking at the convention center but it is easy enough to part at the Ft. Brooke Garage or any of the downtown meters and just walk over to the expo.

The swag for the races all varies. I love the 15K race shirt because it is short-sleeved. I did the 15K as part of the lime challenge and that means I also got a Lime challenge jacket. If you do the half marathon you get a long-sleeved shirt. They also give you a weekend themed tote bag, which is also great to grab cheer supplied and samples!

Race Day parking is usually easy. We found it to be pretty crowded to get into the garage about 45min before the start. We just found street parking and walked a little ways to the start line.

The Gasparilla race courses are some of the most scenic. You get to watch the sun come up over the Tampa Bay! The course usually has a decent breeze, which isn't always in your favor, and there is a ton of course support. Ample water and Gatorade on the course. This year, due to the heat, they added mister fans at every aid station which were AWESOME!

The finish line area was much improved this year! You finish and they hand you a SUPER COLD washcloth as you walk a little ways up to where they have water bottle and Gatorade. Then you keep walking to pickup your medal. Then photo areas right after. It is never over crowded and you never feel like you are being ushered away. Then you walk around to the other-side of the convention center to get post-race food and such. On our way there we saw the new Dick's Sporting Goods P "arrrrrh" bell (get it, Pirates, Arrr)!

Post-race food was ok. I however, always appreciate a race that isn't just a banana. There were fruit cups, bags of pretzels, and granola bars. Not bad for a 15K! I don't usually eat much post-race so this was just enough.

This year's logo was updated to be a really cool looking octopus. So the 15K medal had that as well. I really like it!

If you are in Tampa on Gasparilla race weekend you don't want to miss out!!

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(2018)
"Gasparilla 8K"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
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This is my third year running Gasparilla but my first time running the 8K.
The weather is always unpredictable. Last year was gorgeous, this year was hot and humid. If you are ever doing a race in FL make sure you check the dew point!

Expo - Gasparilla always has an awesome expo. Lots of vendors that sample everything from food, new products, to things you know and love. It is 2 days and has easy to attend hours. There is parking at the convention center but it is easy enough to part at the Ft. Brooke Garage or any of the downtown meters and just walk over to the expo.

The swag for the races all varies. I love the 8K race shirt because it is short-sleeved. I did the 8K as part of the lime challenge and that means I also got a Lime challenge jacket. If you do the half marathon you get a long-sleeved shirt. They also give you a weekend themed tote bag, which is also great to grab cheer supplied and samples!

Race Day parking is usually easy. It was quick and easy to drive into the Ft. Brooke garage. Be aware, it is a $10 fee to park and you have to pay in advance. They take credit but cash is totes quicker!

The Gasparilla race courses are some of the most scenic. The course usually has a decent breeze, which isn't always in your favor, and there is a ton of course support. Ample water and Gatorade on the course. This year, due to the heat, they added mister fans at every aid station which were AWESOME! The 8K begins at 9:15am so prepare for really hot, super sunny, and zero shade!

The finish line area was much improved this year! You finish and they hand you a SUPER COLD washcloth as you walk a little ways up to where they have water bottle and Gatorade. Then you keep walking to pickup your medal. Then photo areas right after. It is never over crowded and you never feel like you are being ushered away. Then you walk around to the other-side of the convention center to get post-race food and such. On our way there we saw the new Dick's Sporting Goods P "arrrrrh" bell (get it, Pirates, Arrr)!

This year's logo was updated to be a really cool looking octopus. So the 8K medal had that as well. I really like it!

If you are in Tampa on Gasparilla race weekend you don't want to miss out!!

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(2017)
"St. Pete Run half marathon"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management
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The expo and packet pickup were over at the Mahaffey Theatre and Saturday Morning Market. I love that it was combined with the morning market cause it allowed us to do some local shopping while supporting the businesses that supported the race. The only thing I would change about packet pickup would be to put it in the lobby of the mahaffey or maybe even at the Rowdies stadium. Otherwise, it was an easy-peasy pickup!

It's a good course but it has quite a lot of turns. Some people love that, I'm not one. For me, it makes the race feel longer. I don't know why but that's just how it feels. There is a lot of construction going on downtown so I don't know if the course will change any as that lets up. The best part of the course, by far, was running through the Tampa Bay Rays stadium. It was a nice reprieve from the sun and the heat to get some of the milage inside! When you came into the stadium they had the camera turned on so that you showed up on the jumbotron! It was awesome!
Then you get to run out of the stadium and up a nice little hill! All around downtown. As we were coming down Central Ave into 1st your could feel the heat and humidity starting to rise. This course it completely open to the elements. There was some shade from buildings but not very much. However, it is great to get to run through downtown St. Pete!

The post-race party is where this race WINS! When you finish they hand you a medal and a race specific tervis tumbler pre-filled with water! They made a big deal about the race being as green as possible and that is amazing!! Then you got an Orangetheory/St. Pete run ICE COLD TOWEL. It was absolutely needed and amazing!

Then you head into the post-race area that was sporting a beer/wine garden, food from Outback, Carabba's, and Bonefish Grill. And the BEST part was the Beach Snowballs! I've never heard of them but it is quite possibly the best snowball I have ever had!
All in all, this was a great first time race! I've already got this weekend blocked off on my calendar for next year! Hopefully, they have a new tervis every year and I can start a stellar collection! If you happen to be in the St. Pete area the weekend before Thanksgiving next year this race is a must!!!

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(2017)
"Red, White, and Brew 5K"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
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Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management

This is just a well run 4th of July 5K. It is organized by Fitniche Lakeland. Easy to get to, nice setup, and simple course. They had a great number of volunteers out on the course. Beware, there is ZERO shade on this course. The only improvement they could really make would be to have more bathrooms available.

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(2017)
"Excalibur 10 miler - Sapphire year"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
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This was year 2 for the Game of Stones challenge. This was the Sapphire year. The packet pickup is quick and easy at The Running Zone in Viera/Melbourne. The only downside is that you can pickup and shop race items the week before and since we are not local everything was pretty picked through. I wish they would have a way to pre-order things for those that don't live local. I LOVED this year’s shirt. A really nice royal blue and even though the women’s sizes suck as usual at least this year’s shirt fits.

This course is VERY full! I did 10.6 miles which means I was weaving a good bit and I felt it! The first 2 miles are out on the road. Beware that this course has little to no shade in Florida. Miles 3 & 4 are on this sandy back road. Please note this isn’t like a slightly sand covered paved road. This is straight up sand and dirt. Everyone was trying to find the areas that was more packed. Then at mile 5 you made the turn into the sun! Miles 5, 6, 7 are just sidewalk and sunshine. They are doing quite a bit of construction so there is really nothing scenic about any of it.
Mile 8 we get down to 1 lane, maybe 2 people wide with minimal traffic. When these folks walked they were not walking on the grass and weaving was much harder. This was SUPER annoying. It is a mile out and back with the small lane crap. I actually feel bad for the people slightly faster than me who probably had WAY more people to deal with.
Is this the best race ever? No. Is it well organized? Yes. Is it the theme that makes it? ABSOLUTELY! They do put an attention to medieval detail into it that is very much appreciated. I just wish they could find a way to widen the course in a few areas!

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