When: January 3, 2015.
Where: Downtown LA.
Course access: DTLA is very well hooked up to mass transit. The race start was close to the 7th St/Metro Center stop on the Red, Purple, Blue and Expo subway lines. The finish line was close to the Civic Center stop on the Red and Purple lines.
Why: A Place Called Home.
Number of Participants: 1218 finishers in the 5K; 997 in the 10K; 2979 in the Half-Marathon.
Pre-race: Once again at the Milennium Biltmore Hotel. They still haven't figured out the expo; it was small, too cramped to even consider navigating, and didn't have any really appealing exhibitors.
Worse, the packet pickup once again closed at 4pm, so runners had to arrive at least two and a half hours before the race to get their bibs and t-shirts. This seemed to be unclear on the instructions and apparently some runners arrived after 4pm, were denied their bibs, and were understandably very upset.
Another issue: some of the volunteers working the corrals were completely rude. The assignments were bizarre, with walkers in the first five corrals. In addition, the way the corrals were enclosed made it impossible for some runners to even access them.
Course: The 5K course differed from the map that was posted online. The turnaround did not seem to be clearly marked, either.
The highlights of last year's race were running down Broadway, where all the theatre marquees were turned on, and then finishing at L.A. Live. This year, the course was boring. Instead of Broadway, runners went up Hill Street, went through the 2nd Street Tunnel, and ended by looping around a bunch of courthouses and municipal buildings, a freeway exit and a truly sad homeless encampment. The only recognizable landmarks on the course were Angels Flight and City Hall.
The race finished at Grand Park. I know this is fast becoming the hangout du jour for all types of events, but LA Live was better.
Post-Race: Water, Nuun electrolytes, bananas, apples, Clif bites and moonpies were offered. Mylar blankets were also provided.
Chip timing: Shoe tags by Gemini Timing.
Shirt: For the 5/10K: a black tech shirt. This was a vast improvement over last year's see-through white one.
Swag: Finisher medals with a baseball theme and drawstring backpacks (the same one from last year). Legacy runners also received special clip medals. The medals were very different, and not as nice, as the ones advertised on the race's Facebook page.
Would I Run this Race Again: I guess. The only reasons I'm hanging on with this race after my 2015 experience
are because of the Legacy status and because I can't find another race I'd like to do in January. They have a lot of work to do.