Oct 3, 2013

Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind Light the Way 5K 2013 - Race Recap

I signed up at the last minute for the Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind's Light the Way 5K, which took place on September 28, 2013. While there was a 5K run, the event also offered an untimed 5K walk, which was free. I had never done a 5K walk before so I thought that would be an interesting experience. Another reason why I wanted to complete this 5K was because it took place at Nationals Park. I have never seen a Nationals game before, and even though I'm not really a sports fan, I have always wanted to visit the ballpark.

The run started before I had arrived, so I had a bit of time to kill before the walk began.

Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind has been assisting the visually impaired in Washington, DC for over 100 years, and this event was especially for them. During the walk, visually impaired walkers were paired with guides to lead them along the course. Such an inspiring thing to see! 

I wandered around the ballpark for a bit. It was so cool to see the stands completely empty. The event was small, well-organized and extremely well-staffed.

There were bands performing all throughout the day, and while we were waiting, these little guys were rocking out.

Event sponsors were also handing out refreshments like granola bars, sports drinks and coffee. I had a granola bar as I was walking to the start line.

Right at 8:45, we were at the start and then we were off!

Most of the route was along the streets around the ballpark. Since the Navy Yard shooting happened just a few days earlier, the event organizers had to reconfigure the course to avoid the area which was now a crime screen.

There is a ton of construction going on in the area, so a lot of the route was not super scenic. We eventually reached the waterfront, which was a pleasant sight to see. As you can see, it was a beautiful sunny day.

There were crew teams practicing on the water.

And this naval vessel parked nearby. 

We headed back to Nationals Park and had to do one more loop around the park before reaching the finish line.

The finish line was right before the tunnel to the field, which led us on our victory lap. Being on the field is probably not something I'll get to do anytime in the near future, so I took my time walking my victory lap. 

Once finished, we got some grub! Pulled pork sandwich at 9:30 in the morning? Don't mind if I do! 

Safeway was one of the sponsors of the 5K, and they sent us home with a bag full of goodies! 

I wound up not timing myself this time. I forgot to start my app when we started and then decided to just go with how I was feeling instead of watching a clock.

This was a great 5K, and I highly recommend it. I would love to do it again next year, but I would sign up for the run. The field of entrants is small and the race provides a unique experience of seeing Nationals Park in a special way, plus it is for a great cause!

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