RUNable Race Review: Labor of Love

RACE STATS:

  • DATE OF RACE: September 2, 2019
  • DISTANCE(s): 5k, 10k
  • REVIEWED: 10k
  • LOCATION: Ridgeland, MS
  • DIFFICULTY: Level 2.5
  • CAUSE: The Salvation Army
  • RUNscore: 3.3 Stars

A Running Glance:

Things I loved

  • Great swag bag
  • Labor Day, family-friendly event

Things I less than loved

  • Open course with speeding traffic
  • Age group certificates
A Running Glance: Things I loved Great swag bagLabor Day, family-friendly event Things I less than loved Open course with speeding traffic Age group certificates RUNable Review: The Salvation Army is known for “Doing the Most Good.” Their annual Labor of Love race is just another way they fund assistance programs and support services for men, women, and children in our community. The work they do truly is a “Labor of Love,” one that shines through this awesome event. Price $30 for early-bird registration is about the new normal price for a 5k and a decent price for a 10k.…
Here is my overall RUNscore, averaged from the individual categories above. Did you run the race? If so, click the stars next to USER RATING to rate this race yourself! Then read my full review below!! PS - I *LOVE* reader comments, so feel free to give me your opinion. But just about this race or my blog. Let's leave religion, politics, and parenting to the professionals. 😉

Running Tally: Labor of Love

Price/Value
T-Shirt/Swag
Expo/Finish Line
Medal/Awards
Volunteers
Course Scenery
Aid Stations
Parking/Access
Race Management

3.3 STARS

Here is my overall RUNscore, averaged from the individual categories above. Did you run the race? If so, click the stars next to USER RATING to rate this race yourself! Then read my full review below!! PS - I *LOVE* reader comments, so feel free to give me your opinion. But just about this race or my blog. Let's leave religion, politics, and parenting to the professionals. 😉

User Rating: Be the first one !

RUNable Review:

The Salvation Army is known for “Doing the Most Good.” Their annual Labor of Love race is just another way they fund assistance programs and support services for men, women, and children in our community. The work they do truly is a “Labor of Love,” one that shines through this awesome event.

Price

$30 for early-bird registration is about the new normal price for a 5k and a decent price for a 10k. The $35 cost of pre-registration (for the three months prior) is a little steep, with race-day registration running $40. These prices were not outrageous for the 10k, but a little high for a 5k distance. I will say though, the swag bag did have lots of “extras” inside. I received this jar of “Mississippi Miracle Clay” muscle and joint mineral rub in my bag, and Opie had a full size “Neo to Go” Neosporin spray in his! Plus, there were lots of coupons, pens, stickers, clips, etc. in both bags.

Another thing I really think is neat about their pricing structure was that they offered $10 registration into the 5k walk or 5k run for kids ages 7-18, and the race was free for kids younger than 6-years-old! That’s just about unheard of! I love that they were encouraging youngsters to come out and be active while also facilitating that families participate together.

T-shirt/Swag

The t-shirt itself is 100% cotton, a thicker weave, but it was a lovely dark teal color. The front features a large, centered Labor of Love logo, while the back is covered with sponsors’ logos, as is customary with race shirts. This category again won its points from the overflowing swag bags outlined above. #WillRunForSwag

Expo/Finish Line

The finish line offerings consisted of bananas, water, canned sodas, and Gatorade. There wasn’t much in the way of food, not that I eat much after a race, but some granola bars, cookies or another treat would have been welcomed! #WillRunForFood

Local WLBT news anchorwoman Maggie Wade was on hand making announcements and awarding age group placements. It’s always a delight to see Maggie; she has such a heart for Mississippi and for children.

Medal/Awards

Every finisher received a red, heart-shaped medal with the Labor of Logo insert in the center. I wasn’t fast enough to place in my own age group, but several of my friends were rewarded for doing so with a printed certificate. I’d suggest going to pins or possibly giving free entries away to winners. I understand additional trophies and medals are expensive, but it is a race. There should be an incentive to place! #WillRunForBling

Volunteers

There were lots of volunteers at PPU the day before the race, and many on hand the morning of the event. One of my fellow MS Track Club-ers, Deanna, was out there keeping MS Race Timing “on track,” as usual. Thanks, Deanna, for all that you do for the Track Club and for our local racing community! There were also several water-stops on course, with friendly and often adorable volunteers!

Course Scenery

The race started from the Harper, Rains, Knight & Company on Highland Colony Parkway. I breathed a heavy sigh when I saw this was yet another race on Highland Colony Parkway, but we lucked out! The route did veer off down Old Agency Parkway and also included a nice section of the Natchez Trace Multi-Use Trail. There were even a handful of shady spots!

Course Difficulty: LEVEL 2.5

The course itself had multiple hills and stretches of direct sunlight. However, the weather was unusually cool (at 75 degrees! Ha.) so we got lucky there as well! My biggest complaint about the entire race would have to be the open course. Cars were still allowed to drive on one lane of Old Agency. So, cars and trucks were flying by, weaving in and out of the racecourse (inside the same lane as runners) as oncoming traffic approached. It was dangerous, and the exact scenario for an accident to happen. I shouted to a couple of cars to slow down, because not only were they far too close, many were speeding too. Even at low speeds, a collision could prove deadly. In the future, I would suggest closing this section of the course to traffic or only allowing traffic to travel one-way.

Click to read the RUNable Difficulty Key
  • LEVEL 1: NO PROBLEM – Mostly flat & even course that’s perfect for a first race or a PR.
  • LEVEL 2: EASY – Small hills or uneven terrain, but nothing too scary for most runners.
  • LEVEL 3: MODERATE – A few more or steeper hills or variable terrain: great training.
  • LEVEL 4: CHALLENGING – Multiple hills and rougher terrain that may take some mental pushing to get through.
  • LEVEL 5: DIFFICULT – Steep inclines and/or the type of terrain that makes your legs hate you, your feet beg for mercy, and your mind think “what were we thinking?”

Aid Stations

There were two aid stations along the 10k route and one on the 5k course. Everyone was very helpful and encouraging.

Parking/Access

This is a commercial area of Highland Colony Parkway so ample parking was available all around the start/finish line at neighboring businesses and retail establishments.

Race Management

The Women’s Axillary of the Salvation Army really did a wonderful job organizing and presenting this family-friendly event for our community. This was my first Labor of Love race, but it definitely won’t be my last. I enjoyed starting my Labor Day off running for such an important cause at this fun event. Thank you to each and every individual who contributed, as well as the sponsors! Well-done.

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