It’s the Grooviest 5K Run ever!! At least, that’s what they tell us. Whether or not the Dash From The Past 5K has earned that accolade is for the various Lords of Funk to decide (we meet quarterly at an Applebee’s parking lot), but I think the race makes for a strong contender.
Dash From The Past is a scrappy young newcomer in the vast field of 5K “fun runs” out there. The central conceit is that it allows runners to dress up from any era in the past, hit the asphalt, run, get healthy, dance, be colorful, and enjoy themselves in a fun, festive, party atmosphere. Or as much as you can muster at 7 in the morning. Regardless, you can whip out your favorite 80s leg warmers and headbands, 70s bell bottoms and polyester pantsuits, 60s hippie headresses, 50s beatnik bongos, 40s… you know what, I’m all out of alliterations. I think you get the point.
My running buddy Kristi and I had decided weeks in advance to hit the event as classic television characters. After going through a list that included Bradys, Partridges, even Love Boat crewmembers, we agreed upon running with a Scooby Doo theme. Classic 70s kitsch, to be sure, and since (being a redhead) she was a natural Daphne, I was content with assuming the Shaggy mantle. Pretty simple for me, anyhow. I’m already tall, awkward, and forever sporting that peach fuzz on my chin. All I needed was a green shirt, brown shorts, and a wig. On the other hand, Kristi is a natural-born running stylist and went all out with her Daphne attire. You can really tell from this shot right here:
Without the wig, I looked only like a dude out for a run in Earth tones… with peach fuzz.
The event took place at Markham Park in Sunrise, on a cool, comfortable Saturday morning in March. Since we live roughly 5 minutes away, this was a morning commute I could appreciate! We arrived about 15 minutes before race start, posed for some pics, and checked out the Start Area. If I had to estimate I’d say there were about 60-70 people participating in the race, which seemed pretty sparse to me. But then I also remembered that the very same weekend of March 22-23 had several other established race events going on, including the Riverwalk Run and the Race Home Beach Run. Plus it was Spring Break for kids and families. Still, it was a decent turnout for a first time event, and the people there were definitely in character and in great spirits.
The energy level was already pretty high as we arrived. A DJ was blasting music from the 70s and 80s and making race announcements throughout the morning. I saw more than a few people boogying down. I might have been one of them. After we filled our hydration bottles up with a very nutritious energy beverage, we made our way over to the Start Area. There were several food trucks available, offering coffee, water, sodas, and all sorts of delicious looking treats, like salchipapas — the smell of which alone was utterly tempting. Even before a race.
As we got closer to race time, the DJ led everyone in a group stretch:
Afterward, we walked over to the Start Line, in preparation to hit the asphalt in style…
… and after an excitable countdown, we were off!Kristi/Daphne and I decided to walk the 3.1 miles, not because we were lazy, but because we looked too damn good to rush. We also ended up getting lots of compliments on our costumes as well. Even the water-station girls stopped us to grab some snapshots:
The course was pleasant, the weather comfortable and cooperative (although I heard it was torrential downpours on the beach at the same exact time), and the environment happy, fun, and spirited. Kristi and I took turns holding the Scooby plush — OK it was mostly her, but I helped! A little…
Boots captured this pic at around the 2.5 mile mark. You can tell how much of a strenuous effort Kristi and I — two experienced marathoners — were putting into the race:
After lots of shout-outs and high-fives on the course, we crossed the Finish Line in style and aplomb. We walked back over to the Party Area to receive our medals. That’s right, we had some 5K medals going on! These are the kind of things that make a race memorable, and in bright colorful plastic they were most welcome.
By this point the music was pulsating with excitement and the DJ invited everyone to jump on the stage and dance… which is precisely what we did!
And then this happened:
I can’t imagine how much of a goofball I must have looked like…
After the Dance Party had run its course, it was time for the Costume Contest. There were awards for Best Individual and Best Group Costumes. I thought we were a shoo-in for Best Group…
… and I was right! 🙂
Needless to say, we were quite elated with our Major Award!
Overall, we had a really fun time at the Dash From The Past 5K. It wasn’t a chipped race, which meant you had to record your own time if you wanted any kind of “official result”, but there were more than a few ‘serious’ runners competing (I believe the first guy came in at around 17 minutes — you don’t want to know our finish time). Most people were out there in costume, with plenty of friends and family, just having a great time getting some exercise on a Saturday morning. The 5K market can get pretty saturated, especially with themed/party runs. With that in mind, Dash From The Past is definitely worth your time. And you won’t have to pry colored corn starch out of your ears later that day. Here’s the video:
Disclaimer: In return for promoting this event, here at Hokeyblog and elsewhere, I received a complimentary registration. My decision to do an event write-up was my own, and my thoughts and words remain uncolored and unbiased. Well, OK, they’re a little colored. But definitely not biased. Promise.