Course is easy enough with some rolling hills in first and last miles. Middle is flat and BORING. They do have some fantastic cheering from the aid stations. Some of the best I have experienced. However, for such a small race it is a HUGE HASSLE to get there. Seriously cars lined up forever, then porta potty lines forever. It is not worth it. There are far nicer marathons out there with better organization and logistics.
I agree with Erin (above). Here is my "good" "bad" and "ugly" for this Marathon.
"THE GOOD": Great fan support throughout the race. Enjoyed the Air Force presence throughout. Over the top hydration and gel stations. Post race food and festivities were great.
THE "BAD": Thought the expo was poorly organized. We were funneled into the center into LOOONG lines which filed you past the expo booths. 1) No real time to meander through the expo vendors. Very congested all the way around the center. Then after the LOOONG wait to get to the bib area, you discover a very small area where there are 3 (did I say 3?), tes 3 lines to handle the 12,000 runners. Are you kidding me? Then we were directed to the center lower floor area to get the packets. Here, there was a vast area of unused space.
THE "UGLY" Well if you haven't heard it by now, The parking was a complete nightmare. Seems like the organizers were so excited by the record numbers, they failed to give adequate consideration to the impact this would have on parking. Our one hour trek in standstill traffic was minimal, I'm sure, compared to what many others probably endured our wait was nothing. Parking from the actual start area - I'm sure walked over a mile. It certainly was not the trek I wanted to make AFTER hobbling across the finish. How about a greater shuttle presence in the parking area? The final mess we experienced was the 35 minute wait in line to pick up our bags from baggage claim. How do you spell chaos? USAFMarathon Expo, Packet Pickup, Parking and Baggage Claim.
Would I do this marathon again? Never.
Fortunately, I had a great time with our running gang that gathered to run the event. I'm thankful for them.
Dean Moyer is right on target with their review. Parking was a nightmare. However, as a little more mature runner, I was just happy that I was able to walk the distance to the starting line and complete the race.
Would I do this run again? Yes, having been blessed each and every day by the good Lord, I will continue to do this run as long as I am able.
Well, this would be the third year in a row I have run the 1/2. It's one of my training runs on my way to the Columbus. I have to say that I've seen the amenities go away with each passing year. No buses this year? No sponges? I think I even heard smaller aircraft were used to buzz the start line? Hmmm, let's see...if every one of the 12,000 entrants paid $60 (meaning no one paid late registration
what are the chances?) then that would amount to $720,000. I'm glad I don't pay for this one-I would have felt ripped off! C'mon guys, you could certainly afford the buses-and if not, then find more staff to direct the parking--- which truly is a nightmare.
Still, the course is much nicer than it used to be, and the support is excellent---It's a keeper unless they continue to cut amenities.
I did this for my first full marathon, I did the half 2 years ago and have to say I was very disappointed. Traffic and parking were a nightmare. We had to ditch the car and walk almost 2 miles to the base because we weren't moving at all. Time we got to the base and used the portapots..the race had started..no worries right..its a chipped race.WRONG..turns out they stopped the start line timing system about a minute before I finally made it to the start line...so my time is over 25 minutes slower than I actually finished the race in..and they don't care. So I paid over $80 to walk 2miles, wait in traffic forever and have the wrong time displayed..no way am I ever going to do this race again and I will advise others not to either. And the result guy won't even take the time to respond to my email..nice! WORST race EVER(and I've done bigger races as in more people that went alot smoother)
We knew parking could be a problem so our hotel shuttled us to within half a mile. I LOVE the flyover. The race is special to me since my twin and I ran the half on our 65th birthday in '06 and she died on our birthday in '09 so I ran the full on our birthday this year. Bittersweet. The course was well supplied with water stops and the finish line remained open and well stocked til the last runner came in - nice. I wish there had been a finish line photo in front of a big airplane like in '06. And I missed the official photo with medal. I do like winning my age group.
suffered a tibia stress fracture 6 weeks before the marathon. their policy of no refunds despite mri proof of my stress fracture and a doctors note not to run was in poor form. also, was asked to pay an additional 10$ just to have my shirt mailed to me - won't support this event in the future.
This was my first marathon. I ran it with my sister and brother. The course had a lot of variety from hills, to going over bridges, to running around a lake, lots of scenery. I likes running through the town. It was a great accomplishment and experience to finish it. Each of the water stations were great. I plan on doing it again in 2011.
I have completed 19 Half Marathons in the last 18 months. There is a reason this Half Marathon sells out early. It is a very well organized event. 1. It has the best shirt out of all the other tech shirts I have got. It is a high quality mesh fabric tech shirt. 2. Hands down one of the best medals you get from a half or full marathon. 3. Ample water, gatorade, GU gel, and even port a potties throughout the course. The only downfall I would say is that the middle streets and across the tar mat (plain strip) is a little boring and the mile markers were off at the end, but overall, this is a great race. You even get food and Beer at the finish line.
I ran the full marathon. I enjoyed much about this race. There was great community turnout. Great bands. Great provisions: Gatorade, water, sponges and toilets. The military presence and support of them was electrifying. I was warned to get to the venue 90 minutes before the race to park, so I did. No problem.
The course was good, flat fast, interesting enough. Just one major detractor: Around mile 21, they route the 1/2 marathoners back onto the same road as the marathoners. They started an hour later, so we had a mob of 12 to 13 minute/mile halfers 15 abreast across the road, thousands of them, while us 7 3/4 to 8 3/4 per minute marathoners tried to get through them during our last miles. Nothing against the halfers, the organizer put them there. You can not have 13 minute runners clogging the road where 8 minute competitors are running. If there was a 3 1/2 rating I would give it less than 4 stars. Meanwhile the competitors in the 1/2 had their own problems, as they got off course and had to run an extra mile or so, effectively invalidating the race results.
I would not recommend this race if competing is important to you. I was 3 1/2 minutes from a 2nd Boston qual. If I didnt have stop and go traffic the last 4 miles, who knows? If it's just another stone soul picnic for you, go for it. But not good for competing, unless they fix the problems over the next year.