Ahh…Drake Relays..a miraculous weekend where I lose countless brain cells.
Ever since my freshman year at Drake in 1996, Relays has always played a special place in my heart. It blew my mind back then that the big track event was at Drake…in Des Moines, Iowa.
Fast forward nearly 20 years, and look at it now. The best track stars not only run here, but they leave astounded at how incredible Drake & Des Moines (and the people who reside here are).
In my 18 years of Relays, I admit, I’ve only seen 2 hours of actual running. Once was in 1997, when we piled out of a party bus outside Drake Stadium…all of us funneled in…just in time to see Michael Johnson blow away the competition in the 400 meter dash…and then it was back on the party bus….destination, I think, was Papa’s Planet.
Then the following year, due to a severe Friday night hangover, my buddy Ry and I sat in the stands and watched 2 hours of running. It was exciting, but we were in too rough of shape to actually clap.
It started last night for a quick hour at Peggys…
Oh, the fun begins…
Everything about the Relays is fun…the way the entire Drake Neighborhood comes even more alive…the tent at Peggys…the breadsticks at Paul Revere’s….my buddies coming back for the weekend.
It’s the walk from Peggys…to West End…back to Peggys…maybe a stop at the Library…and back to Peggys.
This will happen at least three times:
Guy: “Kurt! How are ya?” (gives me big hug)
Me: Great, how are you? How are things?
Guy & Me: (Small talk for 2 minutes…guy leaves)
Friend of mine: Who was that?
Me: No clue.
Runners…you need a pick me up in between races? Run past the tents at the bar…all of us cheer for you…and we’ll probably buy you a beer.
And the fact that it’s going to be partly cloudy and lower 70s the next two days? This is shaping up to be a Relays to remember…or try to remember.
AWESOME is as AWESOME does!