Sunday, March 23, 2014

Kilt Run

I finally participated in my first race for 2014: a 2-mile Kilt Run in Manasquan, NJ. The goal of the run was to set a Guinness World Record for the most amount of runners wearing 2-buckle wool kilts, while also raising money for Hurricane Sandy relief.

The previous record took place in June, 2012 in Perth Canada with 1,764 kilters/runners. Yesterday's event had 2805 registered, with more signing up that morning.

On the one hand, it is cool to participate in a world record. On the other hand, it is a pain to participate in a world record. 

The morning was warm by our 2014 winter standards (40 at 8 AM, rising to 50 by the 11 AM start), but it was WINDY and overcast. Because of the hoopla associated with proper record-keeping, we were all advised to get there between 7 AM and 9 AM to get wrist bands, bibs, be photographed and have those wristbands scanned on the way to the corrals by 11 AM. Oh, and there is not much parking in the area since the race was taking the convenient parking spots for staging.

Um, okay.

As I write this, I'm still only finding stories that they hope to break the previous record. Since they had nearly 3000 people registered and the previous record was about half that, I can safely guess they did break the record.

Don is sporting a MacKenzie plaid. I am wearing a Bruce of Kinnaird plaid, or so the tags on the kilt say.

Don walked the race with Dee, who is still building up strength in her ankle. The three hour wait was much more fun with her and Bill. I enjoy Don's company, but tire of the "hurry-up-and-wait" game when there is so much already to do that day.

We did enjoy a bit of people watching. A number of different groups came out for the event, including several groups of stormtroopers wearing kilts. There is a group for everyone, trust me.

There were also at least two pipe and drum marching bands walking in the event.

Babies and even dogs were also dressed in kilts.

The actual event was a lot of fun. The course was 2 miles, and was filled with enthusiastic spectators the entire time. It did start 15 minutes (again a frustration on an already busy Saturday), but I PR'd (easy to do when it is my first time racing a certain distance). Seriously, though, I kept a 10:45 mm pace, which is super fast for me since I still think of myself as a 12:00 mm runner. I had some chocolate chip La Yogurt at the end and walked back to find Don and Dee. They were pausing to pet a cute dog on the other side of the street. Hmm... Even walking, and getting distracted, they finished with a 17:30 pace. Nice job!

Overall, I felt there were a lot more than 2,805 runners. It was as crowded as a Disney race (which has 10x that number). They could have corralled us by runners in the front, walkers in the back, but they were more concerned with everyone having wrist bands that were scanned than a race happening.

Plus: great crowd support, flat course, fun atmosphere

Con: lack of parking (and parking lots being used for staging), crowded, late start, did not feel organized (the focus was on the world-record and not on the race, but my focus was on the race and not the world-record), never did find most of my friends who were there.

In case you were wondering, yes you can ride a bike while wearing a kilt:


  1. if you check out their Facebook page, they have to apply for the record now, with application's photos, etc. and it could take weeks to be approved. I am sorry that you didn't enjoy it, it was a huge fundraiser for the community, to fix some of the Sandy damage, and a great way to let people across the country see that 18 months later we are all still struggling at the Jersey Shore. They hope to have an event in October, which will probably have most of the kinks worked out. It was their first race :)

    1. Kimmiep, the actual race was great. The crowd support was amazing. Love that it was flat. It was the chaos of parking and waiting around for three hours in the wind that was not fun. It wasn't until the day of the race that we realized this was a fundraiser for Sandy, we thought it was just an opportunity to break a world record (which is also cool). I loved the yogurt at the end. Bring them back!!

      You have no control over the weather, yet the weather has a huge impact on how enjoyable an event becomes. I know, not fair.

      I told hubby next time we would go later. We arrived before 8:30, breezed through processing, and scored a great parking spot, but the whole time he was bundled up concerned about getting sick from being out in the wind.

      Some of the announcements were hard to hear (as the adults are in Charlie Brown movies), so we were confused while waiting.

      We are looking forward to being able to wear our kilts again in public.

      Thanks for all your hard work on organizing the race. Like you said, next time will have some kinks worked out and be even better.

    2. BTW, I'm impressed you found my post. Typically only 20 people read what I write, and that includes my parents. I mostly write for myself and my friends.