This race was chosen because it was "relatively" close/drivable from Indiana. Initially my husband was going to do it with me but he decided that he didn't want to do back-to-back-to-back weekends. So I asked my brother to accompany me.
But let me back up just a moment. This race is in Kansas and it more or less has a Wizard of Oz theme. Naturally that means a Dorothy race outfit is a MUST. Oddly, that was difficult to find. Long story short, I was able to get a child's medium, have it cut in half so that I had a skirt and then the "bib" was attached to a technical shirt. My friend Mary from high school was the fabulous seamstress that helped with creating this. She did a good job!
Okay back to the weekend. I left my house around 7:00am and got to my brother's around 8:15am. It didn't take too long to load up the car and then we were headed west. The time passed relatively quickly as we listed to the news as they were searching for the Boston Marathon bombers that day. (Still unbelievable that all of that happened.) We made very few stops; once for lunch, once for gas. Next thing you know we are at the Garmin headquarters in Olathe, Kansas to pick up our packets. Not much of an expo and it was outside and was very windy. Then it was off to the hotel.
Through the race, I was able to get a great deal at the Holiday Inn Express. It was a nice hotel; I'm assuming it was new. They had complementary shuttles from the hotel to the expo that night and also race morning. We weren't sure if we would take them in the morning or not. It wasn't a far drive (10 minutes?) but you needed to be parked EARLY.
We needed to find places to eat. My brother has Crohn's Disease so his options are limited. I decided to eat in the hotel restaurant (Johnny's Italian Steakhouse) and he went across the street to a different steak house. My pasta was really good and in keeping with tradition I got a slice of tiramisu to go. Sadly I was disappointed with it; it had a pie crust bottom. Weird.
Early to bed and my alarm was set for 4:00am.
I slept relatively well and my brother said he did too. We decided NOT to take the shuttle buses and thought if we needed to, we'd just sit in the truck until closer to the start time. Well that wasn't going to be a problem. Parking was congested and it took longer than expected to get it. We weren't rushed for time but we didn't have time to just sit in the truck. A few pictures before the start (it was great to see others in Wizard of Oz costumes) and then we were off.
Nothing really to look at on the course. And although they advertise it as Fast and Flat....that certainly isn't the case. The marathoners started with us, they broke off around the 3.5 mile marker, joined us again around 7-8 (as we started the paved trail part of the course which was very nice) and then broke off again. STRANGE.
I didn't have a great race but it was within my average finishing time. My brother crushed it and got a new PR. So happy for him. After a quick picture at the Finish Line it was back to the car and to the hotel to shower & load up the car.
We grabbed lunch at a Subway and then headed west (the wrong direction for home) because we were going to the Wizard of Oz Museum!
I grew up loving that moving...okay, I still do and we were so close that I felt like it was a must see. Sure, it was 90 minutes out of the way and this would get us home even later but luckily my brother was a good sport and agreed.
It was a small museum and I guess I'm glad I went because I would probably always wonder what it was like but I would never suggest that anyone make a special trip to go see it. Unless you're close by at the time.
It was a L.O.N.G. drive home. We got to my brother's house around 12:30am Sunday morning which meant I got home at 2:00am. And of course, I had my sweaty Dorothy costume that i didn't want to get ruined so I put it in the washer and waited (unloaded my suitcase & put a few things away) because I didn't want it to sit in the washer wet overnight either. So I had to hang it dry. UGH! I was finally in bed at 3:00am. As Dorothy would say, "There's no place like Home."
It was good to spend time with my brother. I'm really glad that this worked out and that he was able to go with me.