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Race Report and Photos: Snowball 5K at Morgan's Wonderland (Read 19 times)

scottydawg


Barking Mad To Run

    INTRO

     

    I am Scott aka Scottydog, runner since 1983, cancer survivor, retired Air Force, employee of University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), friend of dogs, fun-runner, and all-around goofball.  In 2003 I had spinal arthritis flare up and ever since then I’ve done the run/walk method since it hurts my back too much now to run continuously with no walk breaks.  I’m on what I call my “2F Plan” which stands for Fun and Finish.  At events that I now do for fun I carry my camera, chase “Great Legs” to help motivate my slow old man self to keep moving forward, and take pictures before, during, and after the race. Sometimes I even get a nice post-race sweaty hug from one of the Great Legs ladies.   I then do a pictorial race report of my events.  I also carry dog biscuits with me to treat any dogs I may meet at a run, hence my nickname “Scottydog.” Here is yet another of my Race Reports With Photos, and my thanks to all the people I interacted with for their graciousness and good humor in letting me take photos of them.

     

    SHORT VERSION REPORT

     

    My 2nd race of 2015, held on January 24th.  Race venue:  Morgan's Wonderland, " an accessible family fun park for those with and without special needs"  (www.morganswonderland.com).  Event supported Monarch Academy (next door to Morgan's Wonderland) "a School for Children with Special Needs"  (monarchacademy.net).   Really nice turn-out, about 700 registered for either the 5k run/walk or the 1 mile walk.  I don't know if everyone who registered showed up, but there was quite a crowd of participants at the start line just before we all got started.   After about 2 and 1/2 days of rain, the Saturday morning race weather was great....sunshine, bright blue skies, and about 42 degrees at the 9 a.m. start time.   I ended up doing a time of 32:05 (chip time), good enough for 1st place in my 60-64 age group.   Very unusual for me to get a first place, so I don't think there were that many folks IN my age group, lol; but I will take it; another medal to my collection to donate to 'my' cancer kids at San Antonio Children's Hospital.  My wife, Gail, walked the 5K.

     

    LONG VERSION REPORT W/PHOTOS

     

    Before the Start

     

    Arrived at Morgan's Wonderland with about 40 minutes to go to start time.   The park is really a wonderful place, designed to accommodate people with special needs, but a fun place for everyone.  They have some very uniquely designed rides and fun things to play with.  The first thing that welcomes you into the park is this "hands" statue...

     

     

     

     

    There is also an 'inner lake' in the park, with tracks around it, so visitors can enjoy a ride around the lake on a small 'tourist-size' train.

     

     

     

    This activity thingy here has all kinds of neat stuff in it to play with....

     

    And this stadium at the park is used for various activities.  Today it was used for the post-race awards ceremony

     

    AthleteGuild folks, who did their usual great job of course set-up, timing, results lists, etc.

     

     

    A couple of mascots at the event...

     

    And, of course, some of the participants, volunteers, and supporters pre-start:

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Me with my Love Of My Life, my wife Gail...30 years married next month...

     

     

    Gail and our friend, Angel.  Angel is one of the Race Directors for this event, and associated with Monarch Academy.  One of THE nicest ladies you could ever meet.

     

    Mine and Gail's friends, Gene and Loyce...Gene - who is MUCH faster than me - just had a birthday and went OUT of my age group into the next one...another reason I got first place in my age group, lol.   Thank you, Gene, for being older than me...

     

     

    Some members of Team RWB San Antonio (I am a member also).  Team RWB (Red White & Blue), is a nationwide veteran's group with chapters in many cities (www.teamrwb.org) including San Antonio. The guy with the flag carried it along the whole course.

     

    Getting ready to start....

     

     

    On the Course

     

    We started in the park, pretty near the hands statue and went around the path, adjacent to the train tracks, that circled the lake.  Kind of slow going for a bit on this part, where I was, as this was not a wide part of the course, and there were lots of folks out there.  That and the fact that I'm slow anyway, lol, and was behind a lot of people.    Then it was out one of the park gates and on to the nearby soccer fields. We made a loop through the soccer fields, then onto the paved park roads, did a turn-around near Heroes Stadium (an activity stadium of local Northeast Independent School District), and then did a short lap around Toyota Field, the home of San Antonio's Major League Soccer team, the Scorpions. Out of the stadium and back to Morgan's Wonderland where we ran back to the finish around the lake in reverse of the way we had come out.

     

    My first walk break...at the soccer field loop...

     

     

     

     

    The OTHER side of the soccer fields, where I would eventually end up after taking these photos...

     

     

    My 2nd walk break....heading to a turn-around point that was near Heroes Stadium...I am on the right side of the road, runners coming toward me are heading back toward Morgan's Wonderland

     

     

    Go Team RWB San Antonio!  Carrying the colors!

     

     

     

     

     

    After the Finish

     

    First folks I saw after I finished were these characters from "Frozen", cheering everyone in.

     

     

    Post-race goodies:  pancake breakfast prepared and served up by these guys.  I passed, as I am probably one of the few runners, lol, that actually do not like pancakes.   Maybe next year they will have a couple of waffles reserved just for me...

     

     

    Snowman Pitch...there was a cooler with 'snowballs' in them you could toss at the snowman...and the little snowman was blowing "snow"..

     

     

    Happy Finishers, Supporters, Volunteers, et al.....

     

     

     

     

    Two all-around very nice people, nice chatting with them..and they are  fellow cancer survivors....the more of us the better!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    This young man, with the Frozen folks, I ran with him for a bit near the end of the course...he has a really good pace and did great.

     

    The Frozen characters were very popular at this event...

     

     

     

     

    Two of my favorite ladies.....Bernadette and Gail.  Bernadette was having a foot problem today, so she walked the 5K with Gail.

     

    Me and the Morgans Wonderland mascot post-race

     

     

    Three happy medal finishers...Me, Gene, and Loyce....

     

     

    EPILOG

     

    This is a great event to do!  Lots of fun, lots of friendly people there, great venue, nice post-race goodies, besides the pancakes there was also apple and orange slices, Krispy Kreme donut holes (yeah, I indulged in those!) bagels, and more.  And this year the course was changed a bit to let us do a lap inside Toyota Field, that was a nice touch, well done, race directors Dale and Angel!   Mucho thanks to all the volunteers, law enforcement, vendors, sponsors, etc., all the folks who made it possible to put this event on.   Definitely a keeper on my race calender, plan to keep my 'streak' for this one going!

     

    And, after I got home, I had took the example of my Siamese, Sinatra....totally relaxed on one of his favorite blankets...

     

     photo 003_zpsdfn9qlqi.jpg

     

    and got totally relaxed myself and took a nice afternoon snooze in my chair...

     

    My next event:  The Superbowl  7K on February 1st at Eilan in San Antonio.

    "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." Theodore Roosevelt

      Congrats on the AG win, speedy!  Looks like it's a lovely January day down there!

        Congratulations on the first place AG award! BTW, your wife looks very lovely. Congrats to both on 30 years!

        “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” - T.S. Eliot

        PADRunner


          Another nice race. Congrats on the AG!

            Beautiful day for a race.  Congrats on the AG win.  Nice that Gail was participating as well.

             

            I'm surprised though, only two races for all of January?