Race Report Contributors: Harold, Judy
Event Name / Date / Location : Run for Joy, Sept 24, 2022. Berlin, Germany
Synopsis: Arriving in Berlin in preparation for Judy’s Berlin Marathon, we had the chance to have a more casual and fun 5K as part of this event. Totally cool to be at the Berlin Marathon Race Expo, and a super unique race course on the defunct Tempelhof Airport airstrips! A true mix of participants from around the globe. Have fun, and then load up on the post-race Bredzels!
My Race Experience: (Harold): No big expectations on a fast time, just looking to get a 5K in for my ‘International’ running experience, and enjoy the sights along the way. Hey, also needed a 5K to round out my racing this year for the RunK2J Award!Arriving at the former ZentralFlugHoffe in Berlin, the defunct Tempelhof Airport is located in central Berlin, with the former terminal buildings being re-used as facilities for marshalling runners. There’s even the old airline check-in counters and baggage escalator that looks like it could be functional during weekdays! Stepping thru the airport terminal, you get to walk down to the former tarmac where the race starts, sheltered by a gigantic overhanging roof large enough to cover a jumbo-jet. Really!
The Race start village was on the tarmac, with plenty of vendors, tents, bouncy castles and flags bouncing around. On the tarmac as well is the original WWII Douglas C-47 Candy Bomber, that dropped candies with tiny parachutes on the kids living around the airport! A real piece of aviation history.
For the race itself, folks dressed up in various costumes and gear to represent their countries – we picked up a few Canadians as well and built a small Canadian Corner near the Candy Bomber before the race start. German announcements blared for a while, lots of cheering, the occasional English word or phrase, and suddenly we were off. Once through the Starting Arch, it was a huge loop around the airport runway itself, and we had a gigantic jumbo-jet sized roadway to run on. No problems on congestion, and Judy and I quickly started to run our separate paces. The crowd was chatty and festive, and I enjoyed meeting runners from around the world, and had my iPhone out alot taking snapshots of runners participating that were pleased to demonstrate their outfits! im hoping there was alot of body glide involved in the lederhosen crew!
Circling round to the starting area, we all ran back though the finishing arch, and congratulated each other on the fun-run: meeting many folks along the way. Snacks were super plentiful with Bredzels, Berliners (jam filled donuts), apples, bananas, along with yogert and water to round things out.
After the run, we strolled through the main Marathon expo to check things out, and entered a few contests for a Free Marathon in a European city in 2023 (let fate tell me if we need to return next year). A fine way to start the morning, and we had the whole day ahead of us for more sight seeing. Tomorrow was the big day for Judy’s run, but I could rest knowing I’ve done my running for the week while on vacation.