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Overview: The inaugural music-themed Sunset Strip Half-Marathon/5K gave runners an opportunity to run along --as the name would suggest -- the Sunset Strip in the heart of West Hollywood. The race was impressive, particularly for an inaugural event.

When: April 19, 2015

Where:
West Hollywood, starting and ending in the park next to the Library.

Course access: Bus service around WeHo was a bit screwed up by the street closures; the closest ones were the Metro 4 and 16, both of which were re-routed to go along 3rd St. 

Why:The race provides funds for the House of Blues Music Forward Foundation.

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Number of Participants: 575 5K finishers; 1729 Half-Marathon finishers.

Pre-race: Packet pickup was available on either Saturday or on race morning. One confusing thing was that the informational email indicated was that the packet pickup would close at 6:45am -- but the 5K didn't start until 7:30. A second disappointment was that they seemed to be running out of various sizes of race t-shirts early on. Despite these two issues, packet pickup was smooth, and the volunteers were nice as can be. 

Course: For the 5K, the course was an out and back from San Vincente to Sunset. The hill on San Vicente was extremely challenging, but as the race announcer said, at least it was at the start, and not the finish! The course went past numerous Sunset Strip landmarks, including the Whisky-a-Go-Go, the Viper Room, the House of Blues, Saddleback Ranch and Book Soup. There were numerous informational placards along the course that gave fun facts about various hotels and other buildings.

The course was well staffed with volunteers, who made sure the 5Kers knew where their course split from the Half-Marathon and turned around; and there were two fluid stations with water and Gatorade.

Timing: By Westtime, with disposable shoe D-tags. Finish line clock. Mile markers for Half; none for 5K.

Post-course food:  Yay! Runners were offered Gatorade cans, water, Kind bars, bananas, and bagels. There was also a beer garden and runners were entitled to a free drink. I didn't take advantage of that.

Shirt: A lovely long-sleeved, two-toned tech shirt. No logos! Whoo!

Swag: Great medals for both the 5K and Half.



Expo: Just a few things here and there, mostly sporting goods companies.

Would I Run this Race Again: Absolutely! I was very impressed by how organized, efficient, friendly and well-run this event was. This is what a race should be like!

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