Race preview: Linear Brave Trail 5k/10k in Banks

The leader at the 2013 Banks Linear Trail Run on the trail. Credit: Kelly Barten

The leader at the 2013 Banks Linear Trail Run on the trail. Credit: Kelly Barten

The Linear Brave Trail Run is a growing race with a great finish area atmosphere, a flat course, and to raise money for Banks Elementary school. So far, they've raised $25,000 for the Technology Fund - in just three years! I've run it twice, and both times I've had a lot of fun. The race starts and ends at Banks High School; actually, on the track at Kelly Field - what a great name for a sports field, right?

There is a kid’s race, which is actually the culmination of the Principal Challenge; a lap around the track after a fun warm-up. What’s the Principal Challenge, you ask? Well, for every 50 registrations for the race, the Principal will put on more of a silly costume … here’s the reward schedule:

With this number of registrations, the Principal will:

50 registrations – wear clown nose
100 registrations – wear clown hair
150 registrations – wear clown pants and shirt
200 registrations – wear clown hat
250 registrations – wear big clown shoes
300 registrations – ride tricycle around track as a happily dressed clown!

This race is an out-and-back, with the 5k and 10k starting together and running the same route until the 5k turnaround. I bet you can guess what the 10k participants do, right?

The route starts by looping around the back side of the school and popping out on Main Street. Just around the one-mile mark, the runners and walkers will merge onto the beautiful Banks-Vernonia Trail. In May, this trail is a peaceful, green-walled wonderland. Even though you’re running parallel to Highway 47, it’s really quiet, too. Up until the 5k turnaround, that is. In past years, this has been the location for the aid station, where volunteers have music to pump you up and water to quench your thirst. At this point, the 10k participants will continue on for another mile and a half before their volunteer-staffed turnaround.

I highly recommend the 10k, if you are thinking of doing this race. Those extra miles on the trail are beautiful. I’ve always enjoyed cheering on (and getting support from) those walkers doing the 5k, too.

One of the hand-customized race bibs from the 2013 race, decorated by Banks Elementary students.

One of the hand-customized race bibs from the 2013 race, decorated by Banks Elementary students.

The last mile is back along Main Street, and don’t forget that loop around the school. I don’t know whether or not this last section is downhill, but when I’ve run this race I’ve felt very fast running back through town. Volunteers at each side street not only keep you safe but they know how to cheer, too! The only part that seems a little long is after you turn left off Main back towards the school; fortunately once you turn back onto school grounds there are a few very short segments broken up by slight turns and then you coast onto the track. About 350 meter around the oval to the finish gives your friends and family plenty of time to cheer for you as you cross the finish line!

This race has had amazing local support in past years, and based on the race’s website, it’s back again! There were so many buy one get one free offers and great coupons – even some free treats from some sponsors – and be sure to bring some cash for the raffle! Each participant gets a few raffle tickets in their goody bag, which you should drop in the drawings of your choice before the race; but even $20 will go a long way and it all goes to the school.

Here are the vitals:

When: Saturday, May 17, 2014

What time: 9a for the 5k/10k and 8:30a for the Kids Run

Where: Banks High School in Banks, Ore.

Register: Online here for $20 for the 5k or 10k; the Kids Run is free. You can also register DOR starting at 7a for $30. Please register online so the kids at Banks Elementary can be sure to decorate enough race bibs for participants!

About Kelly Barten (1150 Articles)
I started the Run Oregon blog in February 2007, because I felt like running in Oregon and SW Washington deserved more positive coverage. I also wanted to level the playing field so that small, non-profit races could compete with big events; and to support LOCAL race organizers. I'm a Creighton Bluejay (undergrad) and an Oregon Duck (Sports Marketing MBA), and I live in Tigard with my husband and two kids. My "real job" is working for an incredibly awesome math textbook company doing marketing and production.
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