Downsview Park saw ColoUr Me Rad takeover at the end of May, and while I was hoping to have the pro pics to post with, I’m growing impatient (and losing hope on them sharing) so on with the show!
This run was my first race with my kiddo, who’s 8. She’s a runner like her mom, and did her first 1K kids run last year at the Oasis Zoo Run. She loved it, and placed pretty high considering the weaving she had to do- 10/500 runners starting at the back of the pack…Now that she’s got the bug, this year I wanted to challenge her further. And while the Color Me Rad race said they had a kids run, I didn’t know the distance, or much else for that matter.
The kids race kit was pretty cool, came with T, sunglasses, bandanna, and a cool RAD tattoo. My kit came with some nifty knee high socks and a grey Color Me Rad T. I, like the skim reading fool I am, didn’t read that the T was for later use and showed up wondering how the colour bombs were going to tye-dye this T…I saw a few other people with confused looks too- so at least I knew I wasn’t alone.
Volunteer wise, we found it difficult to find out where the kids run was- so we asked around and went with the flow- kids run with you, until they are tired, and you basically defect from the route. There are no waves, corrals, or any other means of organization. And that’s not just course wise (which, with my Nike+ run app clocked the course at not even 4K), but the drive in as well was torturous. Downsview isn’t the easiest to access in the first place, but with TTC subways not running that day, no matter how many school shuttle buses you run it ain’t gonna cut it.
So, putting those details aside, I was never under the assumption that this run was a true race- sure we had bibs, but with no official timers, you were on your own. All the fun comes from the colour stations, which were pretty awesome. The volunteers have boxes of coloured corn starch, which you queue up to get covered in. Word to the wise, wear a crappy pair of sunglasses and a bandanna. While it’s non-toxic and totally safe, it still stings if you get it in your eyes, and not so tasty in your mouth.
Other stations have watergun filled supersoakers filled with liquid dye, which helped not only get more colour on you, but cool you down too. A few Brita water stations dot the route, so no need to bring your own. The finish line greets you pretty quick, where your loved ones are hopefully waiting to pelt you with bags of colour bombs (you could buy them at a nearby merch tent). Runners scored a free colour bomb upon finishing, making the cheer squad grow by the minute.
The DJ cranked tunes and made for a very party like atmosphere. Even though it was pretty chaotic, I would definitely do Color Me Rad again next year, and will be better prepared…like bringing a ziploc bag for my iPhone!!