More Adventures in 5K Land – Healing Center, Laura’s Smile Mile, Purple Stride

This morning I had two 5Ks on my radar: one for the Healing Center in Bay View, and another one called Laura’s Smile Mile. I debated between the two, but the Bay View one seemed a bit smaller and friendlier, and the other one’s website seemed slightly unwieldy and didn’t have online registration and didn’t say anything about a t-shirt. So I decided to do the smaller, friendlier one.

I drove down to Bay View, but was driving in a bit of a thoughtful reverie and missed my turn and ended up too far south. By the time I made it back to the event, I had missed the start time by 6 minutes. I asked the gal if I could “buy” a t-shirt anyway, and she said of course, and that if I was going to pay the registration fee ($24), that I should join the 5K anyway and catch up to the group. She was very sweet. So she registered me, I put the t-shirt on, and went off to find the pack of walkers.

But the day was so beautiful I had to stop and take pictures.

And I couldn’t find the walkers, and the path was uphill, and I knew that the other 5K started in an hour, and more importantly I had seen that there was a plant sale in the park … so I decided to check out the plant sale and then do the other 5K instead. So I circled back around to the park, bought some mint and lavender and a savory crepe :), and then got in my car and headed to the other 5K. Along the way, I looked down from an overpass into a park and saw a large group of people dressed in purple t-shirts walking paths together. Another 5K! Which one was it, and why hadn’t I heard about it?

I headed on to my original destination, which I discovered from signs was only a two mile walk, not a 5K. But I had to park so far away, and I didn’t even know where the registration tent was, and it turns out that the (loooong) route I took to the registration tent was actually the walk route, and so I felt I had already done half the walk before I even started. I wish I had done this sooner, but it occurred to me after I was quite a ways away from my car that I should pull out my phone and activate the GPS on my “Map My Walk” application, and see just how far I did walk to get to the starting point.

And when I finally found the registration tent, I had about a minute to register before the walk started. But they had no adult size t-shirts left, and … well, something inside me just didn’t want to participate in that walk, so I didn’t register, since I was pretty late anyway. I did wander around and look at their tents, and bought a string backpack for $5, which made me happy. I use those all the time.

So then I fell into line at the end of the pack, strolled with them along the water until we nearly reached the road, and then split off from them and headed toward the purple shirt group I had seen from the overpass. I really wanted to find out who they were and what their cause was.

One more note about that particular Smile Mile 5K: They had the runners returning along the same path that the walkers were heading out on. That must have been annoying to the runners, as they had to find a place to cut in between the walkers (some with wagons and strollers), and try to find a bit of asphalt to pass them as the walkers were mobbing most of the walkway. I myself veered off onto the gravel right next to the water rather than have to walk behind the mob, which had to slow down and even stop (think “rush hour traffic”) as each runner found a place to cut through. If I could sit down with those organizers and have a little chat with them, I would have quite a few suggestions to make that might make their event run a bit more smoothly. I am confident they will receive the same feedback from other participants.

Anyway, I walked along the water on this most beautiful of days, past the Milwaukee Art Museum and Discovery World, until I came to the purple group, who had already finished their walk. Their event was called Purple Stride, it was for Pancratic Cancer Research, and they were some incredibly friendly folk. I bought a t-shirt from them ($5!!) and a keychain, chatted a bit with some super cool people, and then headed back off to my car.

I think I walked a 5K (3.2 miles), don’t you? Keep in mind that the blue dot is where my car was parked, where I started (and ended). The green pin is where I was when I started my GPS app.

I find it interesting that this app even kind of shows that I moved off to the left when the runners came by. See the little tiny “jog” by the water at the bottom of the green patch. I get a total kick out of seeing the circles and jaggies that show where I wandered about.

I had put on my Melanoma long sleeve tech shirt this morning because it was a little bit chilly. At the Bay View Healing Center walk I put on their t-shirt, then at the Pancratic Cancer Walk I threw their shirt over the other two.

I’m wearing a lot of shirts here. 🙂

When I got back to my car, I found this tucked under my windshield. Should I do one of them?

And then I went to Alterra for a coffee afterward. It was busy.

And now I’m off to do a bit of gardening…

… and fill up my bike’s tires, as tomorrow is the UPAF Miller Light Ride for the Arts! (ps. My friend Nancy took all the photos featured in their trailer!)

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One response to “More Adventures in 5K Land – Healing Center, Laura’s Smile Mile, Purple Stride

  1. I’ve always wanted to do some sort of walk. Maybe next weekend I’ll look for one to participate in. And drag the bf along with me 🙂

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