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From Nick

Trail markings were taken down in mass and three times repeatedly on the grist mill section; talked to Joe ranger about this and he said he could put up a notice on website and we could put up signs informing the public. Also consider adding a date to the signs and “this is a sanctioned park event - we will remove after xx/yy/zz”

Start all races on time 15 min warning, head out to field with 5 mins remaining, do announcements and then start

Better mark where 50k people go after first lap

Sweepers do not leave until all 50k runners accounted for and in.

Consider marking bin #s through at aid stations and finish (especially AS1 since before it is where everyone gets lost)

Everyone like the trail race “vibe”.

Barb said the signs being printed made it seem more professional, yet many signs at start / finish were hand-written, which gave it a personable small feeling.

From Jim


We had 200 runners this year, 50 of which were 50k runners. Fed approx 260 people. Penske truck rental went much smoother than using a trailer. Not as cramped for room either. Loading & unloading of truck went quickly & efficiently Assembly of canopy / tents in Kichen, AS4 & Start Finish went up efficiently. Setting the Start / Finish table outside of the shelter worked out great. Chutes for finish line as well as for the 50k runners beyond the timer worked out GREAT. Taping off the kitchen area & the access way into the Shelter with tape & the skinny table worked out great. Canopy tent, chairs & fans for the cooks worked out GREAT ! They didn't burn out this year Many compliments on having multiple beer choice selections. Also less waste. I hope we are rid of the kegs for good !!! All the food was really good quality,cooked right, & were ample portions. Free pizza & gazpacho cold soup had many compliments. As usual, the freezer pops were a BIG hit for runners & family members Bought dry ice by the block at Safeway which worked better than pellets. Having counters & relaying info to S/F HAMS worked out great. Having 2 volunteers at AS4 was perfect as this was a VERY BUSY area for ALL runners. Having door prizes at 2 pm worked out well. The quick distribution of prizes was just the right amount of time. My first time to visit AS2 during the race. I would have liked to take mom, Barbara & Ty there sometime during the day as well but didn't

Bob Bevil was indespensible for the race. Using his house for gathering of equipment, transporting fridge unit, setup & watch beer area while keeping the fresh ice on the drinks thru out the afternoon. We only had 2 bags of ice leftover. Bob also put ice in sealable baggies for the runners joints which was a nice touch. Very little shuttling by drivers this year. Probably less than half of previous years. I saw Jim Lay around the shelter almost all day long. Many, many compliments from people saying how smooth this event ran. They also said they could witness & appreciate all the logistics & planning that went into the event. We left park at 6pm. Goal for next year is 5 pm !


We still did a lot of extra transporting of materials from Gaithersburg to Bob's despite the planning we did. Locks on picnic benches in shelter almost caused a major logistics problem First bus arrived about 20 minutes earlier than expected causing major disruption while we were rearranging tables and unloading registration boxes Registration was late in setting up because boxes were not easily found in truck, all while an early bus load arrived. Freebie boxes were mixed in with registration & T-shirts which caused a lot of extra box shuffling. Having to deal with the Indian food brought by a runner. We had no means of heating it. We missed the prepared potatoe dish that was still in the insulated carrying case so it didn't get put out on the table. We did not have a bottle opener for the beers. About half way thru lunch, we finally located a good one so taped & stapled it to a column just above the beer trough. LOTS of leftover soda liter bottles from aid stations. Why not cans & pour into cups for runners ? Would be less waste. Four HAM guys got lost going to aid stations. They could do a better job preparing by learning from area maps. Just relying on the trail maps won’t do it for them. Needed band aids at AS 4. Many runners, family members & kids did not want to to go to the EMT for minor ailments. Second cook was about 30 minutes late in getting there. We lit up charcoal at 10 am to get things going before he arrived with the wood. Could have used a second jug for Tailwind drink in the shelter. Ran out of Tailwind mix early at AS4. 7 runners didn't check out with Race people. Had to chase them down via phone calls. Could have used 1 extra volunteer as AS 4 & Food Serving area to relieve other volunteers for linch or water breaks. I ended up doing that job.

Suggestions for future

Penske trucking worked out very well. Consider renting from local Gaithersburg area which will make for fewer shuttle trips getting stuff to Bob's. Will also make it easier on Sunday to return items. Ensure that Ranger has locks off picnic benches in shelter before our arrival. Ensure that first bus does NOT leave upper parking lot before 6 am

Besides labeling registration & T-shirt boxes as we did, maybe we color code them so they stay together in the truck ? I believe all the boxes eventually got off the truck & to the registration area. The freebie boxes needed to be labeled separately & sent to an adjacent area from the registration area. So much of it was mixed in on top of the registration table. Get more kielbasa sausages next year. We had 64 servings & ran out. No more kegs ! Keep the multi-beer selection Pack a bottle opener !!! Have a box of band aids at AS 4 in future. Depite our best efforts to encourage it, no one was interested in playing games or horse shoes. Can we save $ by not reserving Shelters 104 & 106 ?

From Barb

My notes of things that we needed, or needed earlier to setup without rush or quantities either low or OK


  • Knife, cutting board need
  • Chaffers, stereos needed not waiting on caterer. 10:30
  • Pot to boil water for chaffers
  • 3 chaffers good. 
  • S&p need
  • Cheese late-not utilized
  • Out by 6
  • Lots of bread left
  • 4-6 packs hot dogs left
  • Kielbasa low 
  • BBQ right on
  • Burgers need more 1 box
  • Dry ice Safeway perfect 30 lbs
  • Lots of chips left
  • 1/2 choc cake left
  • Need more tomatoes
  • Lettuce 1ea onion 1 ea- ok
  • Fruit salad 1/2 pan left
  • Need Chimney for briquettes 
  • Hot holders/kitchen towels needed- bob brought late
  • Veggie burgers just few left- fan fav
  • Extra Alum disposable half pans are crucial for cooking with, transferring food
  • Keep food choices simple
lessons_learned_2015.txt · Last modified: 07.31.2016 21:52 by nyeates