The race itself has remained largely unchanged in the 6 years since this race began. It starts in the parking lot between the local Lowes and Staples inside the Keizer Station mall, which offers plenty of parking and room to spread out both pre- and post-race. Runners take about a half mile to thin out on the mall roads before reaching a brief bottleneck to travel under the railroad tracks. Once that is done, it’s free sailing for the next few miles as quiet Gubser neighborhood streets allow for maneuvering and passing. The loop meets back up to return under the bridge and repeat the mall portion to the finish.
I believe this is my 5th time running this event and the first with my oldest daughter (7) running by herself. Previously, she was in a stroller, but this event marked off her 5th race of the year. We were both more bundled up than we wanted to be, as the weather was blustery with downpours in the forecast. Luckily, it never did end up raining that much.
After the race, finishers received coffee mugs (one of my favorite post-race items to receive) and were treated to donuts and coffee. Nothing says Thanksgiving feasting like eating a donut at 830am!