The “Y2K” in the name of the ORRC’s January race had, through 2014, referred to the longer race distance being equal to that year, with a well-placed decimal point. In 2010, the race was 20.10k. In 2011, they added 1/100th of a kilometer making is 20.11 … and so on. The 2015 race, then should have offered a 20.15k race. But instead, race organizers decided to skip ahead a few decades and lock in the 2015 ORRC Y2K distance at 21.10k – better known as a half marathon.
The main reason for the change was due to some required course changes. The old course followed Highway 47 for a while with runners on the shoulder. Less than ideal and a problem for ORRC and the volunteer race organizers, who value safety above all else when putting on an event. After working with the local jurisdictions, organizers were able to secure a course that only runs alongside Highway 47 where there is a separate pedestrian pathway, turning off the Highway where the path ends.
The 2015 race is on Saturday, January 10th. This makes it the first half marathon in the state of Oregon for the year. (The following weekend’s Cascade Half Marathon in Turner, put on by the Willamette Valley Road Runners club, was the only January half marathon in the state for years. In 2015, you could knock out three – these two, plus the Roaring River Run in Scio on January 31. If you have a goal to run a lot of half marathons next year, these three are your only January options.)
Here are the vitals:
When: Saturday, January 10, 2015
What time: 9:30a
Where: Tom McCall Elementary School at 1341 Pacific Ave. in Forest Grove
Register: Online here by December 31, 2014. The half marathon is $40 for ORRC members and $45 for non-members; the 10k is $20 for members and $25 for non-members. You may also register day of race for an additional $10.
The courses are both loop courses; the half marathon includes an out-and-back mid-way through the loop. Both races start and end at Tom McCall Elementary, which is open for participants. You can hang out in the cafeteria before and after the race, use the indoor facilities, and stay warm and dry no matter the weather … at least until race time. After the race, there is a pancake breakfast for all participants.
Both courses include some minor hills; the half marathon has one decent climb that wraps around the back of Montinore Vineyards. The routes are mainly on the roads in Forest Grove and the quiet residential/farming areas south and west of the town. There are five aid stations on-course for the half marathon and two for the 10k.
The 10k race is the first race in the ORRC 10k Series; if you’re interested in taking part in the Series, please note that Series registration is only open until December 15 or when it reaches the cap of 350 participants. Learn more about the ORRC 10k Series here.
The top three finishers in each age group will receive a medal at the awards ceremony held in the warm cafeteria during the pancake breakfast. All half marathon participants will receive the race shirt, which is a long sleeve tech shirt in kiwi green with a cool design down the back (I’ve seen it, but am still waiting on an official mock-up … you just have to trust me). 10k participants can also purchase the shirt when they register or if there are any extras at the race.