The cool twist to We Run the City is that you raise money for either Team UCLA or Team USC. For those who don't live in Los Angeles, these two colleges have a bit of a rivalry, to put it very, very mildly. When you sign up, you're given an opportunity to choose which school you'd like to represent. It's not necessary to be an alumn or student; you just pick a side.Whichever school raises the most money for the Special Olympics gets to keep a trophy for the year.
Both schools' colors are represented on the bibs, logos and medals. The race switches campuses every year; in 2015 it was hosted by USC so 2016 will be UCLA's turn.
When: November 22, 2015
Where: Exposition Park, right across the street from the USC campus.
Course access: Among other lines, Metro's Rapid 754 runs on Vermont Avenue and the local Metro 102 runs along Exposition. There's also a DASH line alone Exposition. However, the easiest course access for most is the Expo Line Metro train, which has stops at Expo Park/USC and Expo/Vermont, both of which are right across the street from Exposition Park.
Why:The race raises money for Special Olympics Southern California. Runners are able to fundraise above their race registration fee, if they wish._____________
Number of Participants: A lot! USC won the prize for the most registrants. _
Pre-race: Packet pickup was available for two days before the race at Sport Chalet locations. Packet pickup on race morning was fast and stress-free, however. There were enough volunteers to handle everyone.
Course: Totally contained within Exposition Park, which had to be a relief for local drivers and bus routes. Participants took a winding path through Expo Park, going past all the museums and venues therein. It was flat and fast, with several water stops and on-course entertainment from cheerleaders.
Chip timing: Yes, on the bib.
Post-course food: Yes, water and food were provided to the runners.
Shirt: The shirt you received depended on whether you signed on` with Team UCLA or Team USC. The design was identical for both, but shirts were in their respective schools' colors: crimson and gold for USC; light blue and gold for UCLA. Many people came to the race showing their school pride with shirts, hats, signs, and even Bruin and Tommy Trojan gear.
Note: Yes, I chose Team USC. When I run this race again I intend to choose UCLA. I'm Switzerland over here; totally neutral.
Swag: A lovely cut-out medal which again incorporated both schools' logos and colors.
Grade: A!Would I Run this Race Again: Absolutely! I'm looking forward to it, in fact.