Friday, September 27, 2019

Mascot Mini Marathon (5k)

Last weekend I participated in Hopewell Borough's Fall Harvest's Find Freddy contest. Boy, that is a mouthful. My friend Heidi was running the event and needed a few more people to walk around wearing a "costume" while enjoying the nice day.

There were no parameters to the definition of "character" or "costume," so I created the character of Disney Runner. The next challenge was to create a clue so people could figure out what I was trying to be. My clue was "willing to pay lots of money to run in circles."

After I handed in my clue, I realized the better clue was "willing to pay lots of money to run around parking lots."

I thought about this five days later when I participated in RunBucks Mascot Mini Marathon

The race was originally scheduled for June 17 (to tie into National Mascot Day -- yes, there is a day for everything) and later rescheduled for September 26. The original date had a massive downpour. Not good running weather in the first place, but really bad for the mascots adorning the route. Personally it fell a few days before I was leaving for Israel and didn't have the time to spare to drive to Philadelphia.

No flag in sight, so some mascots saluted
this man wearing a flag shirt instead.
I didn't have the time on a Thursday night in September, either. Traffic was a mess. I skipped Back to School Night at my new school. I stayed late to work on a grant application. But the weather was wonderful -- 70 and no hint of rain.

Lots and lots of prizes!

And we are off!

 The course was extremely boring -- literally we ran around a parking lot where Veterans Stadium used to stand. There were cones set up, but not many volunteers. As the race took place in the dark (start time 7 pm, but that time of year it is dark by 7:10 pm). You couldn't tell where the cones were (or at least I couldn't tell with my 50-year old eyes). We kept turning to each other and asking "where should we turn?" On the plus, the course was pancake flat and well lit.

There was very low turn out. I feel bad for anyone who left without a prize (the only categories that had competition were women's 35-39 and men's 19 and under). I guessed 30 participants, but looking at the results there were 51, but only 46 finished. Because there were so few people, and it was dark, I had troubles pacing myself. I'll admit I looked at any woman near me and near my age and made it a point to be ahead of her. Turns out I didn't need to even put that much effort into it.
Age has its benefits. 

38433Jacquelyn PillsburyFLawrence TownshipNJUS36:07.536:03.011:385021
Overall Female

Forgot my hat and my lit up shoes
I was also the only woman in my age category to finish. Yay me for making a new age category! May this be the first of many prizes.

I can run faster than that, and should have run faster. I found not seeing other runners made it tough mentally -- more like a training run than a real race.

There were about a half dozen mascots at the start. They hung out for us at the .75 mile mark, which then became the 1 mile mark after the turn around. Some were there at the end (though it was dark and hard to tell).

Don ran the race, too. We both won top bragging rights in our age category. 

Betty the inspirational runner

I saw Betty for the first time in years. Betty is a running inspiration. She is in her 70s (older than the official top age category) and keeps coming out and doing it.

The official photographer grabbed lots of good pictures of us. He offered to hold my camera (in addition to the two he was using) because he couldn't believe I was running with my "big" camera (which was much smaller than both of his cameras). I declined so I could take pictures. I really miss my "little" camera, which was destroyed in the Dead Sea.

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