Maggie over at Mag Mile Runner is organizing a weekly Runner Photo Challenge for all of us bloggers. This week's challenge:
A picture of memorabilia (bib, shirt, medal, trophy, etc - can be just one thing or multiple things) from your favorite race. Include an explanation of why it's your favorite race.
If you've read more than 3.14159265 of my blog entries, you'll know that I am a rabid fan of the Chicago Blackhawks. Any time the Hawks host any kind of event for their fans, I am the first in line.
When the Hawks teamed up with the Chicago Bulls and the Chicago White Sox last year for the inaugural Home Team Charity 10K race, I was pumped! An event that combines my beloved Blackhawks with my passion for running? It's like they read my mind!
My participating picture in this week's Runner Photo Challenge was a no-brainer for me:
When I was in college and for a few years afterwards, I was an avid runner. But then I took a several-year hiatus from running, with the exception of doing an annual 5K race that my firm sponsors every year. Early last year I finally started lacing up my running shoes again. The Home Team Charity 10K was the first race that I trained for after ending my running hiatus! And what a great race for me to get myself back on track!
The race course started at the United Center (home of the Bulls and Blackhawks) and ended at US Cellular Field (home of the White Sox). All participants had their choice of a race shirt representing one of the three teams. Jim Cornelison, who sings the awesome national anthem at Blackhawks home games, was there to get the crowd going before the race start. The mascots from each of the three teams were there to keep the crowd laughing (and I got a picture with South Paw, the White Sox mascot!) Then the post-race party included opportunities for some folks to take photos with the Bulls and White Sox championship trophies (not the Stanley Cup, unfortunately), and to meet retired players from each of the three teams.
As you can see, I got autographs on my race bib from all of the players that I met. The ones that stood out most to me, of course, were Blackhawks greats Tony Esposito and Grant Mulvey. Both were so friendly and personable, and both genuinely seemed to enjoy chatting with all the fans. (Adam thanked Tony Esposito for drafting legendary Penguins goalie Tom Barrasso - probably a very unexpected topic for Tony-O at a Chicago event!)
Beyond the thrill of meeting such incredible sports legends in person, it was so much fun to be surrounded by other Chicago sports fans/runners just like myself. It was also awesome to see some of the race outfits (full-body Zentai suits, lots of jerseys, and even a man wearing a goalie mask). The festivities and race details were so unique and were perfectly suited to my interests. All in all, the Home Team Charity Run was truly the most fun I've ever had at a race, by far.
There's really only one way that I can sum it up:
Sorry, just couldn't resist an opportunity to showcase the Hawks goal song. =)
Awesome!!! Thanks for participating in the photo challenge!ReplyDelete
Maggie, thanks for organizing this challenge - this is so much fun! Can't wait for future photo challenges! I have some ideas for new themes which I'll post on your blog. =)Delete
WAY way jealous! Fabulous!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Bobbi! I know you are a huge Hawks fan, too - so I think you would really enjoy this race, as well!Delete
Love this! I'm actually doing the Home Team Charity Run this Sunday, but it's not as cool as last years. I'm still kicking myself for not registering last year!ReplyDelete
Awesome photo! And autographs, too! :)
Thanks, Cary! GOOD LUCK at the race this weekend! I can't wait to read your recap! Take lots of pictures!!!Delete
I really wish I was running this weekend but unfortunately the timing didn't work out for me this year. I was disappointed when I saw the course loops from the Cell this year instead of going from the UC to the Cell - you too? Regardless, it sounds cool to finish on the field at US Cellular!
I have heard really really good things about that race. It sounds like it was a blast. And I love that you could choose which shirt you wanted! And of course, you CANNOT beat that signed bib! And! And! Your first race back?! It was perfect for you! Love this story :)ReplyDelete
Thanks so much, Kim! The shirt selection was awesome, indeed. I think most people (myself included!) really enjoy being given choices, even if it's just between two options. It definitely contributed to the festivity to see which shirts everyone chose to represent their sports loyalties. =)Delete
Are you going to post a photo for Maggie's challenge? You probably have some great ones to pick from!
I am going to post a pic if I remember to take one! I put a reminder in my calendar, lol :)Delete
How cool!!! I am a Red Wings fan, so I will keep quiet!!! I want to do this challenge too!!!ReplyDelete
Hi Katie - even though the Hawks and Red Wings are huge rivals, I respect the Red Wings and their talent. I also appreciate that the Red Wings play the game without any trash talking or any dirty hits. (I could go on and on about hockey, but alas, this is a runner's blog. =) )Delete
Please do post a photo for the challenge! It's so much fun hearing the stories behind them!!!
I might have to get in on this Runner Photo Challenge deal. Sounds kind of cool.ReplyDelete
And this race sounds really, really cool! I know you are a big hockey fan, so you had to be in hog heaven! And autographs to boot! I walked a 5k on Memorial Day last year that went by Cowboy's Stadium and Ranger's Ballpark. It was neat, but there were no players. That would have taken it to the next level.*
Yes, definitely participate in the Runner Photo Challenge!!! You probably have a lot of great races to pick from!Delete
The race was awesome and I was indeed in hog (or Hawk) heaven. ;) The 5K you ran that went by the Cowboy's Stadium and Ranger's Ballpark sounds super cool! And that Firefly 5K race you ran sounded so unique, too!