Race Preview: First Run 2017 (Portland)

I love New Year’s. It’s one of widely recognized holidays celebrating love, hope, forgiveness, second chances and fresh starts. If you are looking for less formal party on NYE, look no further than Portland’s very-own First Run 2017. This 5K run/walk and 10K run is a fun and festive event for anyone looking for a way to kick-off the new year in health and style.  New this year is the 1.5 mile run/walk Join the anticipated 2,500+ runners and walkers at one of Portland’s most unique parties celebrating the arrival New Year. Of course, no New Year’s party would be complete without a little bubbly for toasting, and First Run provides that and snacks post-race at a big party at the World Trade Center.

The First Run 2017 will take place at the stroke of midnight on December 31st, 2016 along the waterfront in downtown, Portland. The courses take participants along the waterfront and across 2 bridges, with spectacular nighttime views of the lights of the beautiful city. The course follows the waterfront on both the West and East Esplanades, and runs over the Steel and Hawthorne Bridges. Expect a mostly flat course with little inclines throughout. Dress warmly, as the typical winter weather will be breezy and possibly rainy down by the Willamette river. Costumes and all manner of festive attire are welcome and there will be prizes (think sparkly singlets, blingged-out reflective vests or go traditional in satin and pearls), including party hats, noisemakers and glow sticks. Though AA Sports loves dogs, this is not a dog-friendly event so please leave your favorite furry friend at home for the evening. Do bring an ID for post-race beverages, sponsored by Deschutes Brewery.

The fun begins and ends at The World Trade Center (pre-race festivities start at 10:00 PM, so don’t worry about keeping warm before and after (though you are on your own during the race and I’d encourage aiming for a PR so that you can stay warm!) If you are planning on extending your fun late into the night, the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront is offering a group rate on a limited block of rooms. This offer is good through December 10th (or until all rooms are reserved) so take advantage of the discount and don’t worry about the crowds and traffic. Ready to party with your fellow runners? Take pictures in the “snow”? Dance in the New Year to a live DJ? Sign up below and check out the cool perks being offered to participants.

Where:  World Trade Center Portland

25 Salmon Street, Two World Trade Center

Portland, OR 97204

When: December 31st, 2016 10:00 pm-January 1st, 2017 ??

Registration Cost: (Click here:1.5-Mile Run/Walk)
$30 for until November 30
$35 December 1 to December 30
$40 day of race

(Click here: 5K/10K races)
$40 for until November 30
$45 December 1 to December 30
$50 day of race

Packet Pickup and Registration will be held at the Downtown Foot Traffic store, 333 SW Taylor Ave, Portland 97204 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. On-Site Day of Race Packet Pickup & Registration will take place from 10 p.m. to 11:45 p.m Saturday night at the Start/Finish area at World Trade Center, 121 SW Salmon St. Downtown Portland, Or.

Swag: Register by December 17th to guarantee a t-shirt. There may be a few left-over at packet pickup day of race. A post-race party with live DJ, food, beer and a snowy-themed photo booth is open for all participants to enjoy. There is an optional medal available for purchase for $6.

Day of Race: Since it is a holiday, parking in downtown is free! Max is located two blocks from the World Trade Center, which makes it a highly  desirable option for racers and means you can imbibe in post-race beverages without having to worry about leaving your car behind. Questions? Email:

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