Rock ‘n’ Roll is one of the bigger race series that comes through Portland and while it is not a local race, it is kind of nice to break out of the local box and go for a big race that will ‘wow’ you with big name sponsors and a big-race feel. I was able to participate in the Half Marathon last year and I definitely enjoyed the feel of this race and all of the fun goodies that awaited me at the expo. Last year I was really impressed by the course because it took a route that our local races don’t usually take, this year the map looks mostly the same. The race starts downtown at Waterfront Park and then takes off towards the Industrial District, u-turns and heads back down Naito Parkway. Mile five you hop over the Hawthorne Bridge, then head up, up, up Hawthorne and then cross over into NE Portland following alongside I-84. Eventually you cross back over the Steel Bridge and end up on Naito for the finish. The 10k mostly follows the same route, but stays on the West side, save for a quick jaunt over the Hawthorne and Morrison Bridges.
Rock ‘n’ Roll Portland has a big city feel while still keeping the race fun and organized. There are multiple bands along the course so you can keep the rockin’ out alive as well as cheer squads. G.Love and Special Sauce are this year’s headlining band. The expo last year was really fun and Brooks was there with their cavalcade of exciting prizes and games. My son really got a kick out of it, almost as much as my husband. There were also a lot of great booths and lots of room to spread out.
I do love a good swag bag and Rock ‘n’ Roll does not disappoint. For your entry fee, you can expect to receive a great gear bag, Brooks tech shirt, and one of the awesome medals you see above.
What: Rock ‘n’ Roll Portland Half Marathon and 10k
When: May 18, 2014; Waves start at 8 a.m.
Where: SW Naito Parkway @ Governor Tom McCall Waterfront Park
Register: Online here; $110/half marathon (price increase on 4/1), $50/10k (price increase on 4/1)