Wednesday, August 28, 2013

South Side Stride: Trial Run & Giveaway

A new race is coming to the Greater Peoria area this October... the South Side Stride 5K.  I had the privilege to guest-speak at one of their training groups earlier this summer, and am excited to run this fall race. In my opinion, October is simply the best month of the year to run. And an interesting twist on this race... it's in the afternoon!

Today I drove up to the village of Dunlap to give the course a "trial run." This course was designed to provide a nice tour of the village. I believe the only place of importance it doesn't pass by is the ice cream shop and the bar. Oddly enough, those are the only two places I was familiar with...

So I grabbed my course map and set out on a very sunny muggy morning...

The starting line of the South Side Stride 5K is at North Park. I knew I was in the right place when I saw the big banners announcing the upcoming event.

The course immediately heads south through neighborhoods and enters a small downtown area... the bank, the post office, the village hall and a variety of store fronts. There is a gradual incline in the first 1/4 mile, which will help keep one honestly paced from the start.  Once through downtown, I hit a pretty park area by the Methodist Church and took a left (and then a right) towards the Rock Island Trail (RIT). This area was familiar to me as I've run the RIT so many times before, just never on the actual road.

The race course passes by the grade school and library. This is the best flat straightaway on the course to pick up speed. While I was roasting in the hot summer sun, I couldn't help but daydream about how nice this stretch would be on an autumn afternoon.

As I crossed over Rt. 91, my legs started to tire. It's a decent incline to climb along Legion Hall Rd. But then the course turns left and I see a nice downhill to reward my uphill efforts. Whee!

I'm now halfway through the 3.1 mile course, in the midst of a nice new neighborhood. I am completely jealous of the playground, park and smooth sidewalks they have in this neighborhood! This would make a great cheer stop for your spouse/children. This will also be a water station stop on race day.

The course makes a nice rolling loop through the neighborhood and recrosses Rt 91 to trace my steps back to the start/finish line. I ran both my Garmin watch and MapMyRun app during today's run, and the course seems to be dead-on accurate for distance.

Interactive map can be accessed HERE
Oh, the elevation...

What do you say... 
Wanna run this course with me?
Sunday, October 6
Start Time: 2:00 pm
North Park, Dunlap, IL

Runners and walkers alike can register HERE. The cost is $25, which includes a timing device, race bib, cotton t-shirt, goodie bag, marked course and traffic control, 3 live bands (2 on course, 1 at finish) and one water stop. Word has it the JFL cheerleaders will be out cheering along the course.

Proceeds from this race benefit the South Side Mission. The South Side Mission serves to love, feed, house, clothe and teach all people whom the Good Lord sends their way... with a laser focus on Peoria's most destitute zip code 61605. They focus their prayers and resources on the struggling people in that zip code... Peoria's South Side. Think of the difference we can make in our poorest neighborhoods... Reduced crime. Teaching the importance of marriage and family. Reduced alcoholism and drug use. Dwindle gang membership. Restoring HOPE to a depressed area... and making our community safer for all of us!

Hmmm, what could make this better...
How about a FREE RACE ENTRY?
 Enter the giveaway contest via Rafflecopter below before Sept. 5.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This would be cool. I could run with my favorite runner. Run With Jess!!

  2. Price, location & date/time are all big factors for deciding on a race. Don't think I've ever done a Sunday afternoon 5k. Looks like it's going to be nice!!

  3. Location, time of year and my husbands race schedule :-)

  4. I look for races that aren't too far away, that don't cost too much ($20 is the sweet spot) and that have an interesting location.

  5. I love seeing Peoria through your eyes!

  6. Location, date, and cost for sure! I'm also more likely to do a 5k that benefits a charity I really care about.

  7. Love it! How are you taking pictures too! I hate taking much at all with me. My Learncliki tutor told me to get a go pro - pretty sure it was a joke! haha

  8. Hope to be able to make it out. After growing up in Dunlap, it'll be fun to see what happens when they block off all entry to town from the south. ;)

  9. Time of year, location, price is a bit flexible depending on the charity (or lack thereof).
    Thanks for the sneak peek at the race course!


I appreciate your feedback and comments!