Team 5K in 50 States

Team 5K in 50 States: Hannah and Auntie Jennie

Running Buddies: Auntie Shauna, Owen (brother), Dad (Justin), and Uncle Greg.

Cheerleaders: Mom (Nicole), Grandma, Grandpa, Ava (AKA Suzy-Q, cousin), Baby Kaelyn (cousin), Grammy Farr, and Grandpa Tom.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Get Well Gabby 5K - Phoenixville, Pennsylvania

After almost missing the start of our last race, we made sure we arrived in plenty of time for this race.  We selected this race because the Get Well Gabby Foundation is raising money for pediatric cancer research.  Gabby was a 5 year old little girl who lost her battle with brain cancer just 63 days after her diagnosis.  This September marked the 1 year anniversary of her passing.  Her parents, John and Carolynn, set up this foundation to raise money for childhood cancer research as well as to carry on the memory of their beautiful daughter.  We had the opportunity to meet Gabby's parents at the race.
Pre-race warm ups were super fun and much needed after our 6 hour drive in the car the day before :)  It was a beautiful sunny day for the race and were thankful the race started at 9am so it wasn't too hot.  This course was our most challenging course of our 4 for this trip and was mostly a cross-country course with a few parts on a paved path.   
Even though we had an early start, it heated up fast and we were thankful for the cold water at the water stations to dump on our heads!  We huffed and puffed our way to the finish line with a time of 30:44.  Hannah finished 3rd in her age group and was thankful for the post-race stretching by a local chiropractor!
Hannah also was able to get her nails painted with Piggy Paint who is a big supporter of Get Well Gabby and donate 25% of their profits to the foundation.

Hannah was asked by the Get Well Gabby Foundation to be their ambassador for Alaska!  As we run our future races around the United States, we are going to take the story of Gabby with us to spread the word about this Foundation for pediatric cancer research.  If you would like to read more about Gabby and the Foundation's mission, please go to

Thursday, September 20, 2012

United at the Cove 5K - Stamford, Connecticut

Driving has proven to be an interesting experience around the East Coast.  When we planned this trip, we selected hotels close to the race starts and our hotel in Stamford was 3 miles from the race start according to Google maps.  We left the hotel about 45 minutes before race start because..."It couldn't take more than 15 minutes to get there."  Well, we thankfully made it to this race, but it took us almost 45 minutes to travel the 3 miles to get there.  You could tell that Stamford was a very old town that had grown into a very LARGE city and unfortunately, downtown Stamford was not designed to accommodate large amounts of traffic.  Most of the city is 1 lane traffic, but the view at the Cove was well worth it.
Thankfully we arrived about 5 minutes before the race start and they ended up starting the race about 15 minutes late.  We had enough time to get our bibs on and get a couple of pictures.
We walked over with the race participants to the race start and off we went.  This race went around the park at the cove and we made 3 laps around the park to complete this race.  Mom really liked this race because she was able to get pictures of us on the race course while we were running. 
Hannah really pushed it for this race and came out with a 1st place finish in her age group with a time of 27:56, a whole TWO minutes faster than our time for the night before.  The age group for this race was even 19 & under!  Hannah got a super cool medal and award for her finish.  She was given a set of coins from the US Mint, which we actually visited on the last day of our trip in Philadelphia.
Hannah was able to get her face painted with our team name 5K in 50 States by Faces by Wells.  What an awesome job she did!
The race crew is ready for our final race in Pennsylvania...

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Danvers 5K - Danvers, Massachusetts

We arrived in Danvers in the afternoon after visiting Plymouth Rock and the Mayflower II.  This race was an evening race with a race start of 7'ish and very much reminded us of the Bonny Sosa race series in Anchorage.  They were telling us that they hold this race 52 weeks a year rain, snow, or shine.  There was a large turnout for this race and a huge number of 1st time participants.
After all of our walking around New York and Massachusetts, we are pretty sore, so we made sure to do plenty of stretching before this race.
Pre-Race Stretching
Beautiful Sunset in Danvers, Massachusetts
The race began just as the sun was beginning to set.  The open course followed sidewalks down the streets of the neighborhood and the sidewalks had many cracks and roots, which made running in the dark interesting.  I kept telling Hannah that we had to run fast enough to stay in view of people who knew the course because this was also an unmarked course :)  We finished this race with a time of 29:22 and Hannah was the first kiddo to cross the finish line.
Next up - Connecticut!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Great Irish Fair 5K - Coney Island, New York

After a long flight and a 3 hour drive from the Philadelphia airport, we made it to our hotel and crashed into bed.  We were all thankful for an 11am start time for our race the next morning.  We didn't know what to expect for parking so we elected to take a taxi cab to the fair.  What a gorgeous sunny day we had for the race. 
Kaelyn loved being out and about and smiled at everyone :)
This race followed the Boardwalk along Coney Island and Brighton Beach.  It was a beautiful setting to run in.  We lined up at 11am for the start and off we went.  Although this was a flat course, we had to watch our feet as there were some wobbly boards on the boardwalk.  Thankfully neither of us tripped, but we saw another lady trip ahead of us.
Unfortunately, I had forgotten to charge my GPS watch before the race and it died about 1 mile into the race.  We reached the second turn-a-round at the Aquarium after what seemed like more than a mile.  The sun was out in full force and made for a HOT run.  We threw some water on us to cool off at one of the water stations and were ready for the finish line.  Hannah was the second kid to cross the finish line with time of 30:05. 
 After the race, Hannah got to play in the Atlantic Ocean to cool off.  HOW FUN!
As we were heading back, we ran into a couple of NYPD officers who were kind enough to pose for a picture with us.
We are off to the American Girl Store and Carlo's Bakery!!  Tomorrow we will be visiting the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, the 9/11 Memorial, and the Empire State Building before heading to Massachusetts.