This week, my county was ranked the least healthy county in the state. Out of 100 counties. This was not exactly a shocker to me. (Have you ever heard me whine about being desperate for a YMCA, indoor pool, road races, or long distance running partners?) The official ranking, however, is initiative enough though to jolt me into action.
Running is not a big sport here. There is one 5K and 8K in the fall, but there were only about 20 participants. I won the 8K, for crying out loud! Obviously, there are not that many people running here. (We did have a larger, informal running, biking, and swimming event over Labor Day weekend, but the scale of Take the Lake doesn't really appeal to beginner fitness participants. And it wasn't timed.)
So, I am going to organize a 5K. I'd love for it to be an certified, age-group awarded, online registration event, but even more so than that I just want a lot of local participants. And I think that will mean a no registration fee, no t-shirt (although I REALLY want to have a t-shirt), fairly casual run/walk event. (It WILL be timed though and I want to have some awards.)
I've talked to a local organization about pairing it with an event in May, but it will about a week before I hear back from them. If it doesn't work out with that organization, I'm just "going rogue" and going to plan it myself. We spoke about a short (half mile or so) kids run too.
I know I'll need (in no particiular order)...
- sponsors (because pretty much everything that follows on this list depends on their support, especially without a registration fee)
- advertising (including a web presence, even if it's just a facebook event)
- a permit for a possible lane closure on one road without a sidewalk
- a water station at the halfway point (maybe another...we'll need all the help we can get)
- registrations forms (I need to have a waiver on there, right?)
- race bibs and safety pins
- water and snacks at the finish line
- timers and recorders (I've seen this done many different ways at small races, suggestions on best method, anyone?)
- registration table
- signs and volunteers along the route
- some kind of loud speaker for the race start
- prizes for top 3 male and female finishers in the 5K (just overall, not age-group) and some kind of little award for all the kids participating