Today I ran the Battle of Leon Creek 20 miler, put on by Scallywompus Events. This event, it turns out, is the last in a four run series the race director, Bart Childers, says is specifically designed to help local runners prepare for marathon season and the San Antonio Rock 'N' Roll at the beginning of December. Several years ago, Bart and some of his running partners realized the local running events were not mapped out to be friendly to those on a half or full marathon training plan for the San Antonio marathon. Thus, the Alamo Beer Challenge was born.
The Alamo Beer Company sponsors the four race series, which begins in late summer and has an event once a month in August, September, October and finally in November. Runners who run the events get to do their long runs on beautiful courses that are well-supported with water stations and an awesome party afterwards. "We want people to come to the run and stay for the party", says Childers.
The run started at the Hill Country Place apartments, near UTSA under cloudy skies with temperatures in the mid-50s. Water and toilet facilities were plentiful. The first folks out the gates at 7:01am sharp were the 20 mile runners and the walkers. As we headed out, the MC reminded us, "This isn't that hard. It's just right, left, right, left. Repeat." True. We looped out of the parking lot and hopped on the Leon Creek Greenway and headed south. The Greenway is part of a larger network of linear parks that San Antonio has been developing over the past decade or so and will ultimately link up different parts of the city with roughly 150 miles of trails. Leon Creek is a well-developed pathway of smooth concrete with enough room for three runners to run abreast and still room for passing on the sides. The trail is generally very flat and meanders along Leon Creek. Scallywompus placed water stations roughly every two miles and the trail was very well marked to ensure we stayed on course. We turned around roughly behind Ingram Park Mall and headed back toward UTSA and the finish line.
I'm not the fastest runner; I completed my 20 miles in about 3:25 -- under my goal time of 3:30. Happy with my results, I turned in my timing chip and headed to the vendor area. Each adult bib had tear-off tags for beer and food. Priorities being what they are, I headed over to the Alamo Beer tent and grabbed their excellent Octobofest. Pizza Classics was helping feed the masses with a variety of their excellent pies, while Highlander Bar & Grill was handing out Kiolbassa sausage (on a stick!). Several other sponsors and vendors lined the parkings lot: Sessi Wine who was sampling their fares along with the Rebecca Creek Distillery, Monster Energy and Generation UCAN. The aforementioned MC was busy handing out prizes and keeping everyone entertained while a DJ handled the playlist. Everyone was having a great time.
Good run. Good beer. Good food. Good times. Bart says that about 1000 people ran today's event, but he wants it to be much bigger. Well, plus one, Bart -- you've earned a new runner. I'll be there next year. This time for all four events. Bookmark Scallywompus and check out their other runs and next year's series. Interested in registering for the 2016 series? Here's the link: 2016 Alamo Beer Company Marathon Challenge
Did you run this event? Been to a Scallywompus Event before? Leave a comment below!