I was not pre-meditated, but I stole a 5K today. I decided to take it easy and check out the NYRR Al Gordon / Snowflake 5K on my home turf of Prospect Park. I was just going to see if it was as much as a mess as I thought it would be.
Yes, there were people at Grand Army Plaza at 8am looking for number pick up in Winsor Terrace. Yes, there were about a thoundsand people walking towards the starting line with their baggage two minutes before the start. But, Yes, almost 4,000 people finishe the race and I bet they all had a good time. Welcome to Prospect Park. This was probabally the biggest race the Park ever saw.
Do I sound pissed? A little. I sit on the Board of Directors of the Prospect Park Track Club. Back in the early Fall the Road Runners Club announced that they would be moving some of their races to the outer boroughs. (Outer borough, sound like lesser borough.) OK. They also said that the would work with local clubs when they do this. OK. Well, when the Road Runners Club announced that this race would be in Prospect Park, they did it without even making eye contact with The Prospect Park Track Club (the local club). We not only were not consulted, we were not informed.
At the time this freaked us out. It was not a matter of them needing our permission or anything. But our big winter event was scheduled for Sunday, February 22, THE NEXT DAY. If we would have known, we would have move our race, or something!! It has turned out that all our worrying was totally unnecessary. Race registration for the Cherry Tree is way a head of last year, or any year. Who would figure that 4,000 people running on Saturday would have no effect on a Sunday race on the same course.
So, I met my friend Rich at the start and we talked about the Cherry Tree for 5 Kilometers. We also got to say "See ya tomorrow" to lots of friends. I even gave him a hug when the Brightroom people were there, so maybe I will steal a pictures too.
Anyway. Does the elephant ask the fly if it wants to get wet when it takes a bath? Does McDonald's consult with the hot dog vendor when it opens a new store? Why should we expect The New York Road Runners Club to ask the Prospect Park Track Club what it thinks before it comes to "our" park?