It was a frigid Valentine’s Day morning for the North Shore Cupid’s Love Dash in Highland Park. With the thermometer reading 12 degrees and a wind chill of -2, runners were bundled up for a brisk 5K. Registration included a dark grey embroidered beanie that many wore on race day. The start/finish in downtown Highland Park featured plenty of free and easy parking within a block of the start. Most racers waited in their cars due to low temps and made their way to the start line five minutes before the gun went off.
The race took place in the quiet residential neighborhoods of Highland Park on streets well managed by the Highland Park police and volunteers. The course was relatively flat with my Garmin registering a climb of 118 feet and a 91-foot descent. The race had one aid station followed by a candy station with two big tubs filled with chocolate and sugary sweets. Very few people stopped for water, but many stopped for the candy!
After crossing the finish line, runners received glittery pink 5K medals and then made their way to post-race refreshments. Items included bagels, bananas, candy and hot chocolate. The hot chocolate was a hit and warmed frozen fingertips. Walkers and runners alike enjoyed the safe and worthwhile suburban event.
Check out event photos on our Facebook page.
Nicole Kesten is a Chicago Athlete Magazine ambassador. To read more of her athletic adventures, visit nicolekesten.blogspot.com.