Race Preview: 2017 WinterFest Snow Wars Royal Run (Bend) *updated 1/17*

One of my favorite memories from last year’s race schedule was randomly packing the kids up and heading out to Bend for the Bend WinterFest races. The noon start, coupled with entry into the WinterFest events included with race entry, was reason enough to make the trek out to my future city (I hope)!

I had this to say about the event:

The race started at noon, leaving us plenty of time to pack up from Salem, drive over the pass, and get parked outside of the festival grounds near the Les Schwab Amphitheater. The race was held on Sunday, February 14 – the last day of Winterfest and we decided to take a tour of the area first. There was an OMSI kid’s zone, metal workers, and street vendors getting set up. We walked past where the flying dog show and Metal Mulisha motorcycle stunts were going to occur later in the evening, and also checked out some ice carving and fire pit competition contestants.

…[T]he race was just a low-key good time. I got to get a run in, spend the day with my daughters, and relax afterwards while they watched all the great events that were part of the festival. A true win-win for the whole family!

Last year saw Star Wars as a theme, but the new one for 2017 is “Royalty”,  so get to planning your best king, queen, or jester costumes!

The course itself is pretty straightforward. It begins and ends at the Les Schwab Amphitheater and makes a loop on the trails alongside the Deschutes River. Last year, there was only an obstacle themed 5k only, but it appears that they have scrapped the obstacles in lieu of adding a 10k. This is much appreciated, especially as stroller runners  had to skip them.

*a reader has pointed out that here is indeed mention of obstacles in the form of “castles” and “moats”. The longer loop means that those wanting a 5k won’t have to repeat the same course, as was the case in 2016*

There are a few minor course changes from the 2016 event, but not much.

Participants will get logo pint glasses and, if like last year, they were able to be filled with any beer being served at WinterFest. There was no timing last year, so keep that in mind. Speaking of Winterfest, they have some great events that weekend, so consider making a weekend trip (your entry includes entry all weekend). In addition to the race, there will be:

When: Sunday, February 19th at Noon

Register: Go to the event’s site. Cost is $30.00 (includes entrance to Winterfest); $20 DOR (NO Winterfest entry)

About Matt Rasmussen (1574 Articles)
Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching the Olympics, sampling craft beers, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010.

2 Comments on Race Preview: 2017 WinterFest Snow Wars Royal Run (Bend) *updated 1/17*

  1. I see no indication that they’ve “scrapped the obstacles,” as the website calls it an obstacle run and mentions castles and moats:

    “Join us for the Royal Run, an adventure obstacle run at the 2017 Oregon WinterFest. This year the theme is Royalty so plan on castles, moats, kings, queens and so much more.”

    Looks like they’ve put the course on a longer loop, instead of needing two to complete a 5K last year. So that possibly means a 5K runner would encounter half the obstacles, and it’s the obstacles that give the event any distinction.

    Overall, the run was low key last year, with no timing or T-shirts or medals, presumably set up just to lure more people into the Winterfest. Being a three-day weekend it’s a great time to travel to Bend and I will probably do that, but I’ll pass on the Winterfest this year.

    • Thanks for the notification. Obviously I neglected that part when I noticed the extended distance. My apologies! We have updated the post. It is true that there were no medals or shirts, but I found the logo glass (with beer) an appreciated alternative!

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