The Champion of Trees 10k at The Morton Arboretum is the perfect chance to escape the big city if you’re looking for some peace and tranquility. This race has been running for the past 11 years and all proceeds go towards the upkeep and maintenance of the gorgeous trees at the Morton Arboretum. If you haven’t been, it’s highly suggested.
Considering this event was cancelled in 2020, it went off beautifully a year into the pandemic. At registration, athletes were given the opportunity to have their packets mailed to them for a small fee. Athletes were also given a wide variety of options regarding when they would like to race. The event was held over the course of 2 different days, Saturday, April 17th, and Sunday, April 18th. Furthermore, they were able to choose a variety of start times, all separated by 15 minutes. Social distancing was definitely a concern that was well thought out.
Upon arrival to the start line, runners were asked to wear their masks until they officially crossed the starting line. Throughout the race, they were able to keep their masks off if they desired. The beautiful looped course offered some much-anticipated rolling hills with a few significant climbs that left you thinking to yourself, “We have to run that hill AGAIN!?” One aid station was set up on course that offered Boxed Water, a perfect solution to today’s conundrums. And if you’re one that likes to enjoy the views while racing, you won’t be disappointed. You’ll certainly find yourself in the middle of a magical forest at times, and you’ll wonder how Interstate 88 and 355 are a stone throw away.
Race results were also extremely easy to find. Simply scan the QR code on your bib after you finish and you’ll instantly see how you stacked up against the rest of the field!
Life hasn’t been normal in quite some time and who knows if we’ll ever see a race that looks like 2019 again. But one thing is for sure, thinking outside the box has become the new norm and us endurance junkies are starting to get our fill of races again.