Cocoa Classic 5k

20 Miler 728×90

On Saturday, All Community Events hosted its first annual Cocoa Classic 5K race. The event began and ended in the parking lots of the Deer Park Town Center, where runners had access to lots of free and convenient parking.

With over 1,000 runners, the atmosphere was energetic and fun. As always, All Community Events had a DJ and music near the start line keeping everyone’s energy up before the race began. There were also several vendors set up to visit with runners.

The 5K loop had runners leaving the shopping area and running through a corporate area. We then wound back around on a trail, and re-entered the commercial area to cross the finish line. If you have ever run the All Community Events St. Paddy’s Day Race in Deer Park, the course was the same except reverse.

Although it was a bit chilly, the sun was out and the skies were blue. The course was fast and flat so runners could really gain speed. At the finish line, all racers received a glass mug filled with a chocolate covered pretzel and a rice crispy treat. We were encouraged to fill it with hot chocolate before leaving. Runners also received a super comfy hooded sweatshirt.

Proceeds from the race benefited the charity, Mane in Heaven, a nonprofit who provides therapeutic benefits to disabled and able-bodied children and adults through animal-assisted activity and therapy visits with miniature horses leading to improved outcomes of physical, mental and emotional well-being.

The race was extremely well organized, was conveniently located with free parking, and provided great swag to runners. Plus, Deer Park Town Center was decorated for the holidays so really helped to get us in the holiday spirit!

For many of us, this was our last race of 2018 and a great way to end the season. If you missed the Cocoa Classic this year, make sure to put it on your calendar for December, 2019.

First through third female winners Lauren Garriques, Ashley Hansen, and Dalissa Moser. First through third male winners were Juan Carrera, Jonathan Cain, and Jay Renaud.

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Mandi began running in middle school and never stopped. As a high school and college cheerleader, running was the exact athletic counterpart to keep her fitness levels high. While attending The John Marshall Law School in 2007, Mandi ran her first Chicago Marathon, the final year it was partnered with title sponsor, LaSalle Bank. Mandi has continued to run several half marathon and shorter distance races and looks forward to running in the 2017 Bank of America Chicago Marathon. An Illinois licensed attorney, Mandi is currently the Executive Director of the Lake County Municipal League, a council of government representing 42 municipalities in Lake County. An avid weekend race warrior, Mandi tries to run 2-3 races each month from Milwaukee to Chicago and loves the opportunity to report about her experiences in Chicago Athlete


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