Christmas in july half: 7/14/18
Our half this month took us to the big city of Indianapolis for the Christmas in July Half. We really liked the race and here is more about it.
Looking for a half marathon to do in the Midwest for the month of July was definitely a challenge. However, once we saw the medal for this race we were in. Communication leading up to the race was excellent. Starting about a week out from the event, daily emails starting coming in with info needed for participants. Emails included everything from parking to Christmas jokes about Santa. We decided to go to the pack pick up the night before at the Escape room downtown. Thankfully the email instructions on how to find the room made it very easy. If we would not have had any instructions it would have been difficult as there was no sign telling us where pick up was in the building. There was no expo at this one. One table, a few helpers, bibs, shirts and candy canes was it.
We picked the perfect hotel to stay in (Courtyard Marriot). We literally had a 1 minute walk to the starting line. If it has not been for a bridge being out, I believe they said the finish line would have been in same spot. However, it was a half mile from the start and after running 13 miles I was not looking forward to walking that distance.
There was two critical parts to a race we noticed that was absent at the starting area, no porta jons and no speaker for music or announcements. In the daily emails it did say no porta jons at the start, but for those that don't check emails I am sure it was an issue. Five minutes before the race started a guy got up on a concrete riser and said the race will start 5 minutes late due to people parking at the finish area and having to walk over to start. That was it. No national anthem, no music, no gun start. We just went when others went before us.
Now for the actual race, the course was great. The first 3 miles went along the downtown canal. Then we made our way across White River State Park and eventually into some neighborhoods. They had water and Gatorade at every single mile which was awesome on a hot day. All miles were marked. Very little elevation changes that I noticed. At least half the course was shaded, maybe more. There was also a great view of Lucas Oil Stadium from the path we were on for all the Colts fans out there.
The finish line was along the trail path. There was not a huge ending party but several tents were set up that had snacks, soft drinks (best Mountain Dew I have ever had), cold wash rags, beer, and hard seltzer. We got our goodies and headed back to the hotel.
Overall we really liked the race. If you are looking for a big expo, huge truss at start and finish, people all along the route, etc this is not the event to sign up for. However for us, we don’t need all the fuss all the time. For a smaller race (1000 runners estimated) we thought it was a good one and we recommend heading up to Indy next July!
Hello fellow runners & walkers! My name is Brandon Barrett and I am the owner of Tri-State Fitness and several 5K races in Evansville. I am married to Jill and we have 4 children Brennan (9), Braelyn (7), Brecken (5), and Brycton (3). Needless to say my wife and I stay very busy! In the little free time we have we enjoy running countless local races and also traveling around the Midwest to run in Half Marathons.