On Saturday, our local Girls on the Run council hosted its season-ending 5k for about 700 runners, including more than 300 eager Girls on the Run participants. The girls’ pre-race jitters vanished when they arrived to see a Radio Disney party crew pumping out tunes, prizes and games. They lined up in 2s and 3s to visit the “glam station” for face-painting, eye decals and funky hair-dos, delivered by some high school track and drill team girls. Right next to the glam girls, parents milled around the Garmin Jeep where Greg and Justin showed off some of the latest devices to lead their family fun this summer — handhelds for geocaching and hiking, nüvis for the road, Edges for bike excursions.
Race photos from SeeKCRun.com
Beyond the pre-race festivities, some of the race’s key volunteers were Garmin associates who gave up their morning to help ensure a quality, safe race for the girls. Jake and Ryan led the parking patrol, properly equipped with bullhorn and safety vests. Jake said the bullhorn became more of a “don’t make me use it” prop … until I sent him a text, seconds before the race start, that we needed that horn at the starting line, pronto. Jake showed up in a dead sprint, delivered the bullhorn to the honorary race starter, and the runners were soon off on their 3.1 mile jaunt.
Along the way, several Garmin associates served as course monitors, with Garmin engineer Kurt coordinating this effort. There were even some Garmin families and individual runners participating in the race, including Karen, who streaked to the finish as the first female overall. As the mom of two young girls, she just might have some future Girls on the Run in that family. See Karen’s run in Garmin Connect below.
If you’re a frequent road racer, be sure to thank those volunteers and sponsors every chance you get, and step up to volunteer for a race in your own community. It will make you appreciate your next finish line that much more.