The Canon City Blossom Fesitval 5K

by | May 6, 2006 | News Articles

Gary’s Diary #3 of 2006
The Canon City Blossom Fesitval 5K

Event Date: Saturday, May 6, 2006

I hate races that don’t allow me any excuses.
But that was the scenario for the second annual Blossom Festival 5K run that was held on Saturday, April 13, in downtown Canon City. After a cold, rainy and dismal Friday that must have had Blossom Festival and race officials fidgeting in their cushy Belvedere Restaurant seats while scarfing down home-made spaghetti noodles Friday night with Mike Merlino, the sun came up on schedule early Saturday morning and it was a perfect day for racing – a tad nippy as runners prefer, no wind and bright skies. It couldn’t have been more ideal for the 80-some runners who gathered at 3rd and Main streets.
However, I always like to have a safety valve ready to explain my incompetence. Stiff wind. Cold weather. Hamstring injury. Hilly course. Steady rain. Achy toe. Dog died during the night. Neighborhood fire drill at 3 a.m. You know, true blame-worthy stuff.
But nnnooooooooooooooo! I don’t have a lick of an excuse to justify my performance in which I started out OK, began feeling out of shape during the second mile and “hit the wall” as I began the seemingly endless Main Street straightaway from 15th Street to the finish line at 3rd Street. When you run no more and often less than 15 miles a week, you can bonk at two miles much like marathoners might do at 18 or 20. It ain’t a pleasant feeling, I’ll tell you that. And what could be more embarrassing than having Sam McClure pass you in the last couple of blocks while pushing his daughter in a stroller? Life is not fair. But, hey, if you stink, you stink and that’s it.

Here are a few observations about this year’s race:

  • This is one of those “feel good” events that exudes positive spirit.
  • The race officials were upbeat, the banter of the participants pleasant, low-key.
  • It had nice, simple shirts that contain the Blossom Festival logo and race date, always a plus to me.
  • The course was as flat as you’ll find outside Pueblo’s Cinco do Mayo. Well, OK, it had some very low-incline uphill for just a few blocks between Main St. and its northern-most point a few blocks away. It was hard to notice it, though.
  • You got to run on the Blossom Festival parade route, although at 8 a.m. you couldn’t find a soul sitting in their chairs on the street cheering you on since the parade didn’t start until 1 o’clock.
  • For the awards ceremony, they had pedestals for the top 3 finishers in each age division to stand on and have their group picture taken. So if you placed, you could dream you were in the Olympics. C’mon, have some imagination.
  • They had a nice spread of munchies afterward including breakfast bars– now get this — without any hydrogenated oils.
  • The start/finish was just a block or so from some fine downtown eateries like the Bufmack’s that we enjoyed afterward.
  • After you race and dine, you could walk a couple of more blocks to an arts and crafts fair in the park. The stuff’s expensive but it’s fun to look at. And you get to walk off your race stiffness.

See ya again soon!

Mr. G-lightful