Race Preview: 2014 Winter Wonderland of Lights

The 2014 Winter Wonderland of Lights is back again on Saturday November 29th at Portland International Raceway. It’s pretty crazy to be thinking about Christmas-themed races when you haven’t even ran a Turkey Trot yet, but the time is NOW to get to planning.

For those unfamiliar, this is an all ages, all abilities event that features a 2 mile, a 4 mile and a 6 mile run or walk that guides you through the entire Winter Wonderland lights on display every holiday season at the raceway. Each lap is 2-miles, so if you run a longer distance, you won’t have to worry about missing any great light structures. There will be no hills (it is a raceway after all),but this may not be the race you want to PR at (or perhaps you do). To me it feels like it has something for everyone, from the speedsters to those just wanting to get a relaxing run through the lights, to those pushing toddlers at a slow pace. This is a larger race of about 1800-2000, so if you plan of running more than the 2 miles, you will come across walkers. The track size is very generous and large, however, if you are racing it – realize this is a very family friendly event with strollers, scooters, dogs, and bikes!

There will be food and a live DJ, and booths with giftables to sample or purchase. It’s sure to be a magical, festive celebration!  You will not find a more family friendly event than this one. As stated above, strollers, wagons, & tricycles are encouraged to help make this a family fun event. I will be taking my daughters and it will be a first for all of us.

Here are some cool things about the race:

  • “Lil’ Elves” Parade – kids 12 years of age and under, and their bikes, trikes, wagons, strollers and more, decked out with holiday flair – best decorated entry wins a prize! Please, no battery-operated or motorized vehicles.


  • Jolly Ol’ St Nick – bring your camera and take holiday pictures with Santa and the Mrs.


  • “Brightest” holiday sweater – best overall festive holiday attire, and other contests with fun prizes for the most creative.


  • Complimentary post-race snacks – including Franz Bakery products, peanut butter, fruit and more will be provided for participants.


  • Hot Food & Beverages for purchase – Beer Garden featuring festive beverages including Deschutes Brewery seasonal ales and a coffee cart. There will be post-race snack for participants and a variety of food selections to purchase, including Hawaiian noodles and dishes, Philly Cheese steaks, soups & sandwiches, hamburgers & hot dogs, fish & chips and more.


  • DJ with music and dancing – for a holiday celebration surrounded by lights!


  • Expo booths with a variety of products to sample and fun, festive and useful products for purchase. Perfect holiday gift-ables!!


  • Commemorative long-sleeve event tech shirt – included with 2, 4 or 6-mile race entry (short-sleeve youth shirts not included with Lil’ Elves Parade entry, but may be purchased separately).


  • Contests & Prizes – Most Unique Holiday Sweater, “Brightest” Holiday Attire, Most Festive “vehicle” the Lil’ Elves Parade, and more!

Schedule of Events:

Packet Pick-up: 3:00pm – 4:45pm
Lil Elves Parade Start Time: 4:00pm
Race Start Time: 5:00pm and must be off the track by 6:55 pm.

Come for fun and a good time and you will not be disappointed!

Winter Wonderland of Lights (Portland)

 When: November 29, 2014 at 5pm
Where: Portland International Raceway (1940 N. Victory Blvd, Portland, OR 97217)
Register: Online here; $40 (includes shirt); Kids 10-18 for $20; Lil-Elves Parade $5 (or $15 with shirt)


Race Preview: Tickle Trot 2014

One of my favorite things to do on Thanksgiving morning is to participate in a Turkey Trot. It has become a Thanksgiving tradition for me and my daughter.  I feel so much better devouring mounds of turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, and pumpkin pie after having burnt off some of those calories that morning while while most were still sleeping.

If you plan to be in Sandy on Thanksgiving morning consider participating in the 2014 Tickle Trot. This race is unique because there is no entry fee and is run solely on donations. What better way to spend Thanksgiving then gathering with your community raising money together to give back to the local community. Last year the Tickle Trot raised almost $1000 for the Sandy Community Action Center! This year, they will be donating to a different charity which will be posted on their website once the charity has been chosen.

Continue reading

Guest Post: Southern Oregon Turkey Trot

This recap was submitted by Run Oregon reader James Bozeman!
The Southern Oregon Turkey Trot is one for the whole family, even the youngest of runners are welcome to take part in this event. The Turkey Trot is an annual run in its 9th year with three run options, the 8 mile, 2 mile and 100 yard turkey dash for those 5 and under. With Access food share as the beneficiary of the run and receiving the proceeds of the event. The event has generated $30,000 and over 3000 lbs of food from this event.
The race takes place on Thanksgiving Thursday, November 27, 2014. All courses are out and backs on the Bear Creek Greenway. The course is paved, and for the most part flat. The Turkey dash starts at 7:45 followed by the 8-miler at 8:00 and the 2 mile run kicks off last at 8:30.  Awards will be handed out following the race with trophies for male and female event winners, and medals for age group winners. There will also be drawings for race participants.
Registration can be done online and families get a special rate when registering together online. There is also an option to download the application and mail it in. Long sleeve shirts are available with pre-registration before Nov. 23 for $10. This is a great excuse to really pig out on thanksgiving, so come out and burn some calories!

Tofurky Trot 5K

I enjoy running on the holidays and especially love that my kids want to be involved and run these events with me… it feels like we are starting our own family traditions for these holidays.  This year, I have learned of the Tofurky Trot and can’t wait to check this event out!  I’m a vegetarian and excited that there is a race that is geared for us plant eaters on a carnivorous holiday!   Vegetarian/Vegan or not, I hope you’ll check this event out.  It looks like a lot of fun and is  focused on raising money for local groups supporting good health.

Continue reading

Race Preview: Monster Dash

The 3rd Annual Monster Dash will hit the streets of Bend on October 26. Fleet Feet‘s 2014 event is proudly supporting Younity, a group dedicated to helping teachers, students and parents effectively respond to bullying.  This year’s goal is to get 400 participants to help support this positive, community focused organization.  Students of all ages are encouraged to come participate!

Continue reading

Race recap: 2014 Nick Symmonds Springfield 800

Ben Blankenship, Nick Symmonds, and Andrew Wheating with about 100 meters to go in the Elite heat of the 2014 Nick Symmonds Springfield 800. (Joe Dudman photo)

Friday afternoon I drove over two hours one way to race for under 140 seconds, and it was totally worth it. The Nick Symmonds Springfield 800 has quickly become one of my favorite races of the year.

Now in its third year, the event is a straight 800 meter road race hosted by Olympian and former Willamette University runner Nick Symmonds. With separate heats for walkers, and youth, masters, open, and elite runners, there is something for everyone, and when you’re not racing, you can watch the other heats. Continue reading