Date: Oct. 13, 2008
I ran across this race while seeking a tune-up for two fall half marathons. This event took place in a quiet residential area of Oakville on Thanksgiving Day, providing the perfect outlet for local runners to burn off some Thanksgiving meal calories. I participated in the chip-timed 5km run, while others opted for the 5km Powerwalk and 1km family fun run events.
Originally, I was expecting a relatively small crowd of around 200 runners (the previous year’s event — which was held in early September before being moved to Thanksgiving Day this year — had 240 finishers). That was before the unseasonably warm weather brought sunshine and temperatures around 21 degrees celcius that morning, and some 500 participants took advantage of it. Couple this with the narrow start area (perhaps one of the most narrow start gates I have seen in a timed race), space was at a premium for the first km.
After that, the group spread out quickly along the gradual downhill course. The route was a loop with numerous turns, but still turned out to be a fast course — the main reason why I ran a season-best 5km time. The course was very effectively marshalled by a mix of volunteers and police officers, and included one water station at the half-way mark. After crossing the finish line, participants were greeted to the post race area in a small square. It included sufficient food, drink, merchandise and port-o-potties, as well as a live band.
Overall, the event was well organized and had that cozy small-town feel that comes with a local community charity event.