Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Joys of Small Races: Rockapulco Runs

Sorry for the radio silence folks! I had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend out of the city but came back to a ton of work. Since I'm still playing catch-up, the blog posts will be pretty light for the next few days.

I've blogged about small races before, but this weekend I had the opportunity to experience a great one, the Rockapulco Running Series Memorial Day 5-Miler. As the name implies, this is part of the Rockapulco Series, a nice set of runs out at Rockaway Beach. These races are small affairs run on the boardwalk with minimal perks, though most are chip timed. I didn't actually run on Saturday (still trying to take it easy) but I would still recommend these races to anyone.

So what makes them so great? I have never seen stronger community support than at this race. Every runner knew every other runner by name! I was there to cheer on a friend (who ended up coming in first for the women, by the way) and while I was milling around I was really impressed by how friendly folks were. The swag wasn't bad either. For her $20, my friend got a really nice t-shirt (I wish I had taken a picture) and even won a cheesecake and a sweatshirt for her first place finish!

This summer they also have a FREE Thursday run series with three distances, a 400m, a mile, and a 5k. I'd love to do these but I forgot to mention the one downside to these Rockaway races: they're a long way from Manhattan. Saturday my fried drove so it only took about 30 minutes to get to the race, but if you're taking the subway, allow yourself lots of time to get there.

Lastly, I have to post something from their website. See if it sounds like they're referring to any mega-running group you might know:

We think you should enjoy running and walking and not have to wait hours to run OR pay a lot OR go on lotteries to enter OR be forced to volunteer to enter the event :)
Did I mention the Rockapulco folks also put on a marathon?

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