The turnout for the first DC PayDay5k race may have been small, but the group certainly didn’t lack character or gumption! The weather was perfect as we pulled up to Yards Park: 78 degrees and sunny with a cool breeze. With the Anacostia River and Nationals Park as the backdrop, we couldn’t have asked for a better evening. We probably could have avoided parking right next to the port-a-potties, but that’s beside the point.
As Jefferson marked the course Kristen checked in the small band of runners. The atmosphere was relaxed and laid back as everyone chatted, got to know each other, and shared words of encouragement and luck. It wasn’t long before Brandon, Brian, Dylan, Chad, and Jamie meandered to the starting line, ready to race. Jefferson then led the gang through the race course that made a whirlwind tour of South East DC: past the Nationals Stadium, over the river, along the Anacostia riverwalk trail, back across the river, alongside the Navy Yard, and back into Yards Park.
Chad Stockham was first across the line in a stellar time of 18:54, even though this was his first 5k in a long time. Second across the line was Miss Jamie Lewin in a time of 23:02. This was Jamie’s first 5k as she jumped down from her usual marathons. We have it on good authority that Jamie finished second overall after stopping to talk to a local cyclist. Next across was Brian Cotter, followed by Brandon Miller, then Dylan Waite. In true Adventure Geek fashion, each runner gathered at the finish line to help cheer on the other runners as they finished the race. After the finish we held an awards ceremony and handed out pint glasses all around. With their new earnings burning holes in their pockets, everyone gathered at The Ugly Mug for Happy Hour festivities. Everyone raised their glasses to the DC PayDay5k Founders Group and discussed plans to participate in the rest of the series.
We would have to say that the first race was a success, and the small band of these five founders will always hold a special place in Adventure Geek hearts. We are excited to grow from here and hope you all join us!
The race series had been in the conception and planning phase for a while. When it was time to move forward with executing this amazing concept, we ran a Facebook fan page competition to pick a name for the series. After being officially dubbed “the PayDay5k race series,” we (Kristen and I) had very little time to promote it at all before the first race. I'm thankful Kristen is a great cook and coffee maker because I never left my work desk as we built the race website and opened registration all during the last weekend of May. Our online presence was up on May 28th, and, after getting the events added to every online race calendar we could think of, website traffic has been doubling every day since its launch! The playbook is simple and brilliant, and it's going to be cool to see this series spread like wildfire! With the cash prizes to fuel competition for the fast runners and the post-race happy hour for us casual weekend warriors, these races are as serious or as chillaxed as you want them to be.
See you at the starting line!