I was looking to run something fun with my daughter and I had seen a few of these advertised and always seemed to miss to find it right after it sold-out. This one is convenient by car or by train, and kid friendly so we signed up.
Pre-Race: About a week before the race I received a Pre-Race packet with our final instructions and information for our packet pickups. You could pickup either Thursday or Friday in Virginia which is not exactly convenient coming from near Baltimore. The packet said if you missed the pick up dates, you needed to get to the race early in order to get your packet. I believe my packet said to get there 2 hour early so that is what we did. I would have liked a Maryland packet pickup but I can see that being a pain logistically.
Race day: We were up and at the race (RFK Stadium) by 7ish (2 hours early). We then had 2 hours to get our packets and wait around. Looking back we could have shown up a little later and we would have been fine. Maybe an hour before the race would suffice. I have a ton of patience so my daughter and I waited in the car. She built a fort in the back while I listened to the radio and people watched. The fort came in handy before and after the race for changing clothes. —You will need to change after the race unless you want your car to look like a Color in Motion Advertisement.
The Race: The Color in Motion 5k is not timed. You start in different waves every 15 minutes or so. We lucked out and we were in the third wave. Your wave is really just based on when you get in line. They had music and dancing while you waited for your wave to start which kept things interesting. Most people weren’t serious runners and there was no reason not to kick back and enjoy the experience. We walked about 75% of the time. It was nice just to enjoy the time with my daughter. We were able to chat and giggle for the whole hour. The course itself was around the stadium and weaving throughout the parking lot at RFK – not exactly scenic. You are really there for the color stations, and there were a number throughout the course. Each color station would drench you in a different color. I highly recommend glasses and something to cover your hair. Don’t wear your favorite_________.
Post Race: We were both tired after the race so we took a few pictures, grab some water and attempted to blow some of the color off of ourselves. I say attempted because we weren’t able to get much off using the fans they provided. We had changes of clothes so no worries. If you are one of those people who does not want any dirt or mess in your car, you probably should have someone else drive. I still have blue in my backseat. If you stay there is plenty of food and music and color to keep you entertained for hours.
Goodies: You get the shirt and the option to buy headbands, extra color packs, hair ties and a whole bunch of other items.
***If you are a serious runner, stay away. There is no official time and the plethora of walkers does not lend itself to a PR. For serious runners, this would be a 1 or two star event. Overcrowded, and a horrible course. That being said, for a family, group of friends, coworkers or a team building event it is 4 stars. It is meant as a fun experience and the people you are with are more important than the course or the goodies.