Review – St. Patrick’s Day Race – St. Louis, MO

St. Patrick's Day Parade
Editor’s Rating

Date: March 17, 2012

Distance: 5 miles

Race website

Race Mood: There are some very serious runners, but the vast majority of participants are there to have fun.  You will see runners pushing strollers and running with dogs.  You’ll also see groups of people pushing kegs in pull wagons while handing out free beer.  The mood is about having fun.

Total Runners: 13,000. If you want to race for time, then get there early and up front.  There’s waaay too many people that are doing this race for fun and have no interest in letting you through for a fast time.

Race Start Time: 9am (What’s not to like about that?)

Course: Hilly.  Long, but not necessarily steep hills.  The course is challenging if you’re not ready for it.  Some of the hills are over 1/2 mile long.

Aid Stations: There are two aid stations.  The organizers could have done a better job alerting runners of an aid station up ahead.  With so many people, I was past the aid station before I even saw it.

Race Schwag: You get a green wicking t-shirt and a coupon for one free green beer at the finish.

Complaints: This race is extremely strange.  If you register after March 6th, you don’t get timed.  You don’t get put into the results, period.  You basically pay for a t-shirt and a free beer.  I can’t see any reason a race director would do this.  They hire an outside company to handle the race timing and registration, so there’s really no excuse at all.  I heard more than one person complain about this behavior.  Hopefully the race director will step it up and do the right thing.

Conclusion:  This race is really fun, and everyone is in a good mood.  If you do it, be sure to wear green; 99% of participants are wearing it somewhere.  The fun doesn’t stop at the race though.  The entire city seems to converge on St. Louis afterwards to drink green beer (a lot of it), and watch the St. Patrick’s Day Parade go by.  Overall, this is a race you won’t regret being part of.

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