There are lots of great New Year’s races to jump start your brand new running schedule, but one of the best traditions is the Oregon Road Runners Club’s Y2K Run in Forest Grove. The varied and scenic courses take runners on a pleasant tour of city neighborhoods, stretches of paved bike path, and rolling (and sometimes outright hilly!) rural roads. Frequent water and Gatorade stations will keep you hydrated. The event offers a 10k and a half marathon, although I still miss the old custom of the longer race distance matching the year (for example 20.01k in 2001). The 10K is the first race of the 2017 ORRC 10K Series.
In addition to a nice course, the event also features a great venue, Tom McCall Elementary School, with plenty of parking and a warm and spacious cafeteria area to hang out in before and after the races. A post-race pancake breakfast is another great part of the tradition. Rather than T-shirts, half marathon runners receive a custom Y2K stadium blanket ($20 additional for 10k runners). Awards include plaques for the male and female overall and masters winners of the half marathon run and the 10k run and walk, and ribbons for the top five female and male finishers in each 5-year age group in each race. Finishers’ medals will also be awarded.
While the official blurb claims the weather “has run the gamut from sunny and mid-40s, to rainy and mid-30s, or below freezing”, it’s pretty much always as cold as the north side of a January gravestone by moonlight (thank you, J. R. Bartlett’s Dictionary of Americanisms). Okay, maybe I only remember the cold years, but when it’s cold, it’s very, very cold (and often windy), so be prepared and dress wisely! Speaking of January gravestones, both races finish with a short, steep hill and a final jaunt past a cemetery, which may seem appropriate at that point in the race.
The Y2K is always a fun, friendly event, and a great way to start your new year’s race calendar.
What: The Oregon Road Runners Club’s annual Y2K Half Marathon and 10K
When: Saturday, January 7th, 2017
Where: Tom McCall Elementary School, at the intersection of Hwy 8 and Pacific Avenue, Forest Grove
What time: 9:00a (Day of race registration and packet pickup begins at 7:00a)
Registration: Register online HERE. $65 for the half marathon, $40 for the 10k (add $10 day of race). ORRC members can subtract $10 (preregistration only).