It’s not hard to convince me to run a race, but in case you’re less easily persuaded, I have taken it upon myself to curate a list of the top ten-(ish) reasons you’d be missing out big time if you skip the 2017 Alliance Rotary Castle Run. With this many reasons to participate, I doubt you can come up with a convincing case not to run!
1. Two great distances to choose from!
With two awesome distance options, there’s a race for everyone. Prefer to go fast? Or maybe your body does best with lower mileage? Maybe the 2 mile is for you! Training for a fall marathon or half? Or you just can’t get enough middle distance? Then you’re a great candidate for the 10k!
2. Walkers get their own division and awards!
Do you enjoy walking races but always wonder how you stack up to other walkers? Tired of seeing your results in a sea of runners but having no grounds for comparison to other walkers? Are you ready to bring your walking up to the next level and get a little more competitive? Rest assured, the Castle Run has its own walking division. Anyone entered in the race as a walker is given instructions to play by the rules and refrain from running or jogging during the race. (And don’t worry – those who like to combine running and walking can enter as runners!) This way, dedicated walkers can compete with each other for their own age group awards!
3. A small field makes for a great race!
The Castle Run has historically drawn a perfectly sized crowd so that you won’t deal with starting line or on-course congestion that could slow you down. It delivers the best of both worlds as we’ve often seen truly competitive high level athletes show up for the event, but thanks to the size of the race, we the regular people of the world still have a better shot at snagging an age group award!
4. It’s the perfect place to challenge yourself!
Lots of races promote their “flat, fast” courses. Well, the Castle Run is proud of its few rolling hills. We know that every year when we toe the starting line, we’re about to do something that’s challenging yet achievable. And what better way to spend your Labor Day than celebrating your meaningful achievement?? Plus, if you’re training for another race, you’ll get a QUALITY work-out.
5. Custom Castle Run medals for age group awards!
How often do you enter tiny little race and go home with a custom medal? Not that often. Take advantage of those opportunities when you can.
6. Unparalleled affordability!
If you like racing but you hate the price tag, THIS IS YOUR RACE!! For the reasonable entry fee, you’ll bring home a cool shirt, get to enjoy a fun experience, better your health, have a chance to win a medal, enjoy the post-race treats, and support the Alliance Rotary Club – an organization whose sole purpose is to do good in the community, so you can go home FEELING GOOD ABOUT YOURSELF on top of it all. In a world where race fees (like all fees) continue to climb, you can still bring the whole family out to do something healthy and productive on Labor Day without breaking the bank. And speaking of the whole family…
7. Set your kids up for success with the Fun Run!
You want your kids to grow up thinking that holidays are about eating and relaxing? WRONG. Holidays are about waking up early to run. The sooner they find this out, the better. The Castle Run boasts a fun (and FREE!) kids’ run on the lawn before the official races begin, welcoming kids of all ages. You can even bring the ones who are still learning to walk. You can hold their hands. When they go back to school on Monday, do you want them to tell their teacher that they played video games on their day off? Or that they RACED? You know the answer. Now let’s go ahead and get registered for our respective Turkey Trots, shall we?
8. Uh… there’s a CASTLE…
Did I stutter? I don’t really feel like I need to spell this out for you, but I mean… There’s literally a castle. If you’re too cool for that, then you must be amazing, and I need to hang out with you.
9. Be served water by state champion athletes!
Who do you want handing you water and Gatorade during a road race? If you’re like me, I prefer to be catered to by elite high school athletes. The Castle Run is proud to include several state champion runners among its water station volunteers. And while we’re on the topic, I might add that the water stations are perfectly spaced and executed effectively, and that there are additional volunteers throughout the course to read off times and help direct you so that you never get lost! Did you hear that? WE WON’T LET YOU GET LOST!! And ALL of the volunteers are SUPER amazing friendly people who are happy to be outside spending their Labor Day helping YOU achieve your goals. I can’t speak for everyone, but I know that one of my favorite unofficial volunteers, is the gentleman who sits in his front yard with the hose pointed towards the street just in case you need to cool off around mile 4.5. Do you feel spoiled? I do.
10. Become the proud owner of a #castlerunshirt
Once you have your own comfortable, high-end tech-fabric Castle Run Shirt, you can be a part of our social media contests like, “Where Has Your Castle Run Shirt Been?” Post pictures of yourself in your Castle Run shirt to tell us where your shirt has been, tagging us on Instagram @alliancerotarycastlerun with the #castlerunshirt to win PRIZES. Yes, PRIZES! Plus… you’ll have another shirt to wear. Most people wear a shirt pretty much every day, so that’s bound to come in handy.
11. Snack on HOMEMADE cookies at the finish line!
Yes, I’m still going. Do you go to a lot of races where people in the community have lovingly prepared the post-race snacks for you from scratch? I didn’t think so. But that’s a luxury you’re about to enjoy. If you like cookies (so… if you’re a person), then you’ll enjoy crossing the finish line. And if you’re allergic to cookies or something, you can still enjoy the other finish line treats like cool towels, fresh fruit, and ice cold bottled water. Or perhaps you’ll just want to spend some time jamming with the DJ to the cool tunes. Maybe he’ll take requests… I don’t know. Tell him you’re allergic to cookies, and hopefully he’ll take pity on you.
12. Don’t miss the opportunity to run a race hosted by the #1 race director in North America.
Don’t ask me where I got that statistic. It’s not important. Just know this… if you’ve ever been to a race and wondered who the mysterious man behind the curtain is, well wonder no more. Your race director is available and dedicated to making sure that your experience is great, your feedback is heard, and you get your questions answered. Take advantage of this! Look for the guy in the hat with the bullhorn.
Happy Castle Running everyone! I can’t wait to see you all there!