Tag Archives: race

The Devils Chase 6.66 Mile Run (Salem, MA)

Date Of Event: October 28, 2017 (annually, the last weekend of October)

Location: Fort Point St, Salem, MA

Highlights: over 1,000 costumed runners competing in a 6.66 mile race

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With the appropriate “Run Like Hell” tagline, the annual 6.66 mile race spooked up a wide variety of creepy racers.

Keeping with the Halloween theme, most of the runners dressed in their favorite Halloween-themed garb.

 

Over 1,200 runners, many in costumes, participated in the race.  Runners came from all over New England, New York region and even points farther.  The competitors had the option of running the 6.66 mile (roughly 10.7 k) race or the shorter 3.33 mile race (roughly 5.4 K) course.

A fog machine gave the finish line a eerie look and a d.j. from a local radio station kept the spectators entertained.  The finish line had some interesting items hanging from it. The spectators came dressed up for the event as well.

 

Don’t let the kids in the last two photos fool you.  They ran in the kids race and they are fast!

In fact, even though there weren’t as many kids running as there were in the adults and teens race and their race was shorter, I think I enjoyed watching them all cross the finish line and celebrate.

There were some competitive runners (the winner ran the 6.66 mile course at a 5:46 per mile average clip) and some who ran for fun and to challenge themselves.  Every runner received a well deserved “participation medal” when they finished the race.

I love the different expressions on the faces of the runners.  Some are determined.  Others are laughing and waving.  But, they all had a fun or a rewarding experience.   I  still can’t believe how hard it must have been to run the race in some of those costumes and still keep a smile on your face.

Some people ran with their dogs.  Others ran with their strollers in tow.

Watching all of the competitors pushing themselves or just enjoying their run with their friends (that is something I never understood – I never really ever enjoyed  any of my runs) in the mild October air, made my competitive juices flow and made me miss my competitive running days.  You know, before I picked up a camera.  But, after seeing everyone have so much fun during this run, I may have to try this race next year!

Rafa, a 1 year old Belgian Malinois, stopped by to watch the runners.

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Below is a video of some of the runners.

 


Westfield River Whitewater Races (Huntington, MA)

Date Of Event: April 16, 2016

Location: Knightville Dam, Huntington, MA

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Each year hundreds of kayak and canoe racers come to the Western Massachusetts to test their mettle against the rapids of the Westfield River.

The Westfield River, one of the longer rivers in Western Massachusetts, runs 78.1 miles and has a 497 square miles drainage area consisting of several tributaries.  It attracts enthusiasts, recreational competitors and people who just like to challenge themselves.  It also attracts an array of boating fans.

The Westfield River Whitewater Races, which have been held every year since 1953, are the oldest consecutively run canoe races in the US.  People come from all over New England and farther to participate in the races.  The races consist of novice and expert divisions.  The novices race lasts 8 miles and the experts race for 12 miles.  The participants race in two person canoes or one person kayaks. As if the rapids weren’t challenging enough, the race officials have the water behind the dam held for three days before the race to give more momentum to the current.

I never knew how popular kayaking, canoeing and boating was in Western Massachusetts.  It was hard enough to find a good place to pull over or park along the route of the race.   I was able to find a place on the side of the road to catch some of the novices who had already started.

Since the river wasn’t very active here, we drove to the Knightville Dam, the launch point for the race.  The area was very pretty and the river was more active here.  I even caught some enthusiasts who weren’t participating in the race.

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At the main parking area, one of the racers let me photograph his boat.

Still not happy with my location, I found a better spot along the side of the river past a precarious rocky decline.  Watching the racers expressions was fascinating.  Some were determined.  Others looked focused and even a bit bewildered.  Others just looked like they were having a grand time.  Then, there were others who didn’t seem to be having fun at all.

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Not every racer made it to the end.

Eventually, they were able to wade across the river to the other side, no easy task given the strength of the rapids.

Monty, an 8 year old Siberian Husky, came along to watch the race.

Below is a video of a canoe racing tandem fighting the rapids.  You can hear the strength of the tide.  Rumor has it that it gets even rougher farther down the river.

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