This past Saturday evening Melissa (that’s the link to her neon dash race recap), Meg, and I ran the Neon Dask 5k. This is the first night race I’ve done, and I have lots of thoughts on it, so let’s get started.
Melissa went and picked up our packets on Friday, which was really nice of her (so I can’t speak to packet pick up on race evening). I was a bit disappointed in what the race gave to us- there were generic cotton tee-shirts that fit awkwardly and were not in any way ideal for running. So that’ll get tossed pretty quickly. The other thing they gave was this weird neon dash scarf thing that looked bad no matter what we did to it. So Melissa and I decided to just go with it and did cheer leader bows with it.
Because we were feeling really weird about our whole outfit (there was LOTS of laughter as we were getting ready), we had to take a funny pic- ninja, cheerleader, ballerina.
We drove to the race site and started to deck ourselves out with glow bracelets and necklaces (Meg purchased these online- far cheaper than buying them at the race).
The race was originally supposed to start at 8:30, but a few days before the race we got an email saying they were starting at 9 instead. Around 8:50 we walked to the race start to get in line… and proceeded to stand there for half an hour before we started running (they let tiny groups go every few minutes… but never communicated that to us. We would’ve gotten in the starting shoot much earlier if we had known).
The first color station took almost a half mile to come to, and it was a powder station. Then it was almost another half a mile before the next color station. Then there were a few color stations really close together. I really wish they had been more spread out.
They had specifically said multiple times that walkers were to stay to the right, and runners to the left. That obviously didn’t happen, and it was a little annoying. I wasn’t expecting to run fast, as this isn’t a normal race, and I wanted to have fun at the color stations. However, it was really annoying to have to weave around really slow walkers.
There was water once on the course at mile 1.5, and I was looking forward to it. It was hot and humid, and going through powder stations had made my mouth extra dry. We got to the water station and there was a LONG long long line, so we decided it wasn’t worth it to wait the multiple minutes it would’ve taken to get a cup of water. When we passed we realized what the problem was: they were filling tiny cups with a water hose! SERIOUSLY. The entire thing was really inefficient, and I was not so pleased.
We continued on, enjoying the black light stations they had to take pictures at after the color stations along the race course. That part was fun. It would’ve been fun if they had music playing around the course too- it would’ve fit in with the black lights and neon vibe.
Once the race finished, we went in search of water. Again, they were filling tiny cups with water that was not cold or refreshing. They had the Honest Tea company there with samples too. This was cold and refreshing, but only about 2 ounces too. So, at the end of the race, we were given about 4 ounces (MAYBE) of liquid, and that’s it. Not fantastic. The post race party was “meh”, so we headed out pretty quickly. French fries were calling our name.
We stopped my McDonald’s on the way to Melissa’s house (we spent the night there), where we stocked up on Fries and McChicken’s (it was after 11 pm at this point, and we had dinner at about 5 pm, so we were HUNGRY).
A few tips for you: Bring a towel for your car after the race is done. We were covered in liquid and powdered color, and it would’ve soaked the seats if we hadn’t brought towels with us. Bring snacks and drinks for the car on the way home, as you won’t be getting any during the race. If you’re going to bring your phone, put it in a plastic bag. My phone was in a bag, but the bag was covered in color by the end. It’s worth it to bring your phone so you can get fun pictures along the course! Line up early on in the starting shoot so that you’re not waiting around for 45 minutes after the official start time to actually run.
Pros for this race: It was pretty cheap. I paid 22 dollars I think, so of course I wasn’t expecting some of the race amenities that I was used to expecting. It was a fun environment and something different to do with friends! Running in a tutu was a blast…. and there might be more of it in my future
Cons for this race: It was REALLY unorganized. Our start time was later than expected, the water station was poorly managed (they should’ve had more tables set up, and maybe tiny water bottles or something to accommodate the crowds. Warm water from a hose was just not ok). More hydration post race would’ve been nice as well.
Would I do it again? Yes, as long as it was as cheap as it was. I would’ve been really disappointed if it had been more expensive. This race could be awesome if it was just a little more organized. Really though, I just had a fun time running in a tutu with lots of glow stick bracelets and dancing in liquid and powder color- all things I don’t do in my normal life. Running it with Meg and Melissa was a blast too!
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