The Beaverton Sun Run arrived on an overcast day. While, usually that would make me a little less excited about the day, I was happy for the cloud cover that meant cooler temperatures for the race. As my friend and I drove down Arctic Drive to the race starting area, I was wondering where I should park when I saw someone standing in the road with a “Sun Run Parking” sign. That definitely made things easier. We parked and walked across the street to ADAPT Training, where the start/finish area was set up along with vendor booths. I scanned the area for the check-in booth, then discovered a guy holding a sign overhead directing us inside. We were greeted right inside the door by cheerful ADAPT employees who directed us to the packet pick-up area. The process was quick and easy (and well-staffed from start to finish) and we soon had our race bibs and t-shirts in hand.
Before the race even started, the atmosphere was positive and things appeared well-organized. There were port-a-potties outside and real toilets inside, so the wait for bathrooms wasn’t too terribly long. Although I might have waited until the last minute, making my wait in line seem longer than I had hoped. However, I made it to the start area a few minutes before the 10K start. And then a little over 100 of us were off and running! Along the course volunteers were placed at every turn, police were stationed in strategic areas keeping the streets traffic-free, and water stations were well-manned. I was impressed by the number of cheerful, encouraging volunteers.
We left the streets and begin running on Fanno Creek Trail. It was a great place to run with lots of vegetation that would have made for a nice shady run if the sun had been out. Blackberries were beginning to ripen along the trail and a young girl in front of me kept stopping to sample them and then sprinting to catch up with the adult she was running with. It made me smile and wonder how long she’d be able to keep that up! The turn-around for the 5K was on the trail, but the 10K continued on and we left the trail making our way to the Hall Street overpass (over 217) which was actually closed to traffic! It was great to run along traffic-free roads, but I wasn’t a huge fan of running up and over the overpass (Pant! Pant!) Then we were back on the Fanno Creek Trail for an out and back stint only to leave the trail again for a little loop through an industrial area.
I know the loop was necessary for getting in the complete 10K mileage, but I have to say it was my least favorite part of the run. Partially because it was in an industrial area (not as pretty as the trail), partially because it kept going on and on with multiple turns so I didn’t know how far I had to go before turning back around, and partially because the race that day was kicking my butt. Some days area like that. When I finally completed the industrial loop it was back up and over the Hall Street overpass and back along the rest of the route that we had covered on the way out. The finish area was festive, lined with people waiting for friends and cheering as I crossed the finish line and received my giant finisher medal.
Despite the overcast day, it was still a warm one and there was a cooling outdoor shower available at the finish line. Nice touch! There was an informal beer garden set up and some food available among the vendor booths. My friend and I meandered among the booths, cheered for the award winners as they were announced, and then made our way back to the car for the all important post-race trip to Starbucks.
My friend who had run the 5K (which had about 50 more participants than the 10K) said she loved the course, had a great run, and mentioned that “everyone was so friendly!” We both appreciated the big race organization of the event with the small race feel. A big “thumbs up” to the organizers for the great atmosphere and wonderful organization of the Beaverton Sun Run.