RUNable Race Review: Magnolia Meltdown

RACE STATS:

  • DATE OF RACE: March 30, 2019
  • DISTANCE(s): Half Marathon, 10k, 5k
  • REVIEWED: Half Marathon
  • LOCATION: Ridgeland, MS
  • DIFFICULTY: Level 2
  • CAUSE: St. Dominic Community Health Clinic
  • RUNscore: 3.8 Stars

A Running Glance:

Things I loved

  • My first half (in 2015) and a local tradition!
  • Awesome finish-line atmosphere and FOOD
  • Nice swag for purchase
  • Super-sized medal #bling

Things I less than loved

  • Not much to see on course
A Running Glance: Things I loved My first half (in 2015) and a local tradition!Awesome finish-line atmosphere and FOODNice swag for purchase Super-sized medal #bling Things I less than loved Not much to see on course RUNable Review: In its 13th year (after being canceled in 2018) the Magnolia Meltdown came back with a bang in 2019! Price As with most races, the price increases as the date draws near. The early bird pricing, which was in effect until the month before the event was quite reasonable for a race of this size and distance. The Half was $70 ($85…
Here is my overall RUNscore, averaged from the individual categories above. Did you run the race? If so, add YOUR OWN review in the comments and I'll add up the READER REVIEWS as well! Then read my full review below!!

Running Tally: Magnolia Meltdown

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

3.8 STARS

Here is my overall RUNscore, averaged from the individual categories above. Did you run the race? If so, add YOUR OWN review in the comments and I'll add up the READER REVIEWS as well! Then read my full review below!!

User Rating: 4.55 ( 1 votes)

RUNable Review:

In its 13th year (after being canceled in 2018) the Magnolia Meltdown came back with a bang in 2019!

Price

As with most races, the price increases as the date draws near. The early bird pricing, which was in effect until the month before the event was quite reasonable for a race of this size and distance. The Half was $70 ($85 on race day), the 10k was $35 ($45 on race day) and the 5k was $30 ($40 on race day). The Magnolia Meltdown (MM) strives to raise awareness about the obesity epidemic in the US, particularly in Mississippi, and the proceeds benefit the St. Dominic Community Health Clinic.

T-shirt/Swag

The t-shirt is Canvas brand, 90% cotton, 10% polyester. It’s a perfect fit, nice and lightweight for the hot Mississippi summer ahead. My only complaint is that it’s black. I own a white dog so I can’t wear black without looking like a used lint roller! (Thanks, Nora!) I did, however, purchase a MM visor for $15 and a sticker for $5 online when I registered. I always try to grab a sticker from my Halves. (Is that how you refer to multiple half marathons? Halves? It sounds so weird!) I was a teensy bit disappointed that this year’s sticker wasn’t “branded” like the ones from years past. No biggie though. 13.1 indeed! However, I *love* the visor. Headsweats is my FAVORITE brand so I was stoked I snagged this guy for only $15. Score!

Expo/Finish Line

There was no expo this year, but the finish-line had a lot to offer. Music, awards, pizza, pancakes fresh off the grill (Thanks, Primos!), fruit, granola bars, sodas, Gatorade and water were all plentiful!

Medal/Awards

THIS MEDAL THOUGH! It’s YHUUUUGE as Donald Trump might say. MM’s medals are always heavy duty, top quality, and custom designed from year to year. Magnolia Meltdown was actually my first Half Marathon back in 2015, and I ran it again in 2017 & 2019. Check out the medal progression below.

Volunteers

There were ample volunteers at packet pick-up, on course, and after the event. Everyone was helpful, friendly and encouraging.

Course Scenery

As for the course, the most scenic portions were along the Natchez Trace Parkway, but it seemed I spent the majority of the time along the highway. There wasn’t too much to see, but I still enjoyed running in places you can’t run any old day!

Course Difficulty: LEVEL 2

There were just a few inclines but lots of turns. The terrain was mostly even which made for an overall low difficulty score. It was a little humid on race morning, but they don’t call it the Meltdown for nothing!

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 several water stops along the way. And check this out… the most beautiful sight in the world! Port-a-potties as far as the eye can see! (Do I hear angels singing?)

Parking/Access

We arrived maybe an hour before race time and were able to park nearby at the Hyatt Place Hotel. I also spotted a parking garage that looked to be a hot spot for racers. Overall, parking was copious and convenient.

Race Management

This race is well organized and always a pleasure to run! Like I said, it was my very first Half back in 2015, so this event is very special to me. I plan to return in 2020 and hope to see you there!

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