The Dogfish Dash has been on our calendar since April, when my friend Brian suggested getting a group of friends together for a weekend in Rehoboth Beach for the race weekend. I’m a big fan of Dogfish Head Beer, and my parents have a place near Rehoboth, so it’s my go-to beach destination for summer weekends. And who can say no to a race that involves a post-race beer party at a brewery?
The Dash has been going on a few years and benefits the Delaware Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. Runners and walkers have the option of a 5k or 10k that takes place on the roads around the brewery in Milton, DE. Runners are all given a wristband for the after-party, and three beer tickets attached to their bib. The after-party had a selection of Dogfish beer, naturally, along with some musical performances.
The weather couldn’t have been better on race morning. We headed to the brewery, and after a bit of a bottleneck trying to park, we made our way to the start. The crowd was littered with runners in Dogfish gear and beer-themed costumes, since the race also involved a costume contest. This was definitely a fun run, and I have no idea why Matt and I overlooked dressing for the occasion.
Both the 5k and 10k runners lined up at the start together and ran the first 2.6 miles of the course together. At that point, volunteers directed the 10k crowd to make a turn and continue on the route for the remainder of the race. The race winded through quiet streets in town and made its way up and down quite a few hills. A short way into the course, there was a small footbridge going through a park, which led to runners having to wait to line up single file and walk over. Not ideal. The course also made a loop, so the 10k runners had to cross the bridge four times. The rest of the course was quiet and lacked any interesting scenery, but lined with energetic volunteers and runners that made it fun.
While I am in the middle of marathon training and a 10k is no big deal, it was still pretty tough. Matt and I had both run 20 mile long runs the day before, so my legs were fatigued. We also both made the mistake of drinking a fair amount of beer and eating a fair amount of fried food the night before. My stomach was cramped and uncomfortable the whole time. I had to veer off course to find a bathroom shortly into the race. While I wasn’t feeling too great, I had Matt running with me, which kept me going. I also had a cheering section as my parents came to see us at the finish line.
It was a fun race and great to hang out with my friends and other runners after it was over, despite the insanely long beer lines. Matt and I ended up meeting a woman who was running her first marathon at Marine Corps in a few weeks and we chatted about various east coast races we’ve all done. The instant camaraderie among runners is awesome. There were also keg sprints. While we missed the official timed events, Matt and Jen did the keg sprints for fun. Matt ran them barefoot, naturally.
It was a fun morning and a great way to get in one last beach weekend before next summer. We will definitely put this race on our calendar for next year!
Special congrats to Jen, who placed 3rd in her division. She’ll be running (and kicking ass) in the Chicago Marathon this weekend!