Have you wanted to run a race which has a very unique start? Then you have to check out the Destination Races Wine Country Half Marathon Series! If the name doesn’t already give it away, their races involve wine + running – what a great combo!
The one I ran last week was called Destination Woodinville. Woodinville, or Woodinville Wine Country, as it is advertised, is a hidden gem known mostly to the locals. The region is extremely quaint. You don’t have to be a wine lover to enjoy it. There are some very unique restaurants and you can easily spend a whole day touring around. That’s what my husband and I did last year. And because it was so charming and fun, I decided to come back and run this half again.
Woodinville is approximately a half an hour drive from downtown Seattle. The area actually has a number of wineries. We visited 2 of them, and if you want to try some of the wood-oven pizzas from some of these wineries, they are delicious!
The race itself takes place on the grounds of Chateau Ste. Michelle. Not exactly a Napa Valley type winery, but a fair-sized winery. There are wine-tours throughout the summer, and they have outdoor concerts as well. We did the wine-tour and it was a very knowledgeable tour for us. I wasn’t aware of how much of an art & science the wine-making process was prior to the tour. Some of these wine-making masters are in fact highly sought after. We learned about what climate produces what kind of grapes. Very interesting.
Anyways, morning of the race, cars were allowed to park on the grounds of the winery. There were shuttle buses as well which dropped off runners coming from downtown Seattle. The morning was so rainy there was limited visibility. Even the potties were so dark, I wish I was wearing a headlamp so I could see! It was an ugly morning. Weather was lousy. Rain was falling hard which kind if dampened everyone’s mood. At 7:30, the race started, and we exited the grounds of the Chateau and ran a good 4-5 miles before getting into the Sammamish River trail. It poured during the whole race. My clothes, my hair and my shoes were soaked right through. It was a very nice course but it was too bad that the weather was so awful. I’m sure it prevented people who weren’t racing to avoid the trails that day, because us racers basically had the whole trail to ourselves.
With this race, I was happy to receive a very cute medal when I finished. See picture. The medal part detaches and can be used as a wine coaster. I really like it. Plus….each runner received an individual wine glass with a piece of dark chocolate inside. What a way to wrap a race, despite the weather. The chocolate was delicious!
Thanks Destination Races Wine Country Half Marathon Series for the wine-glass, I will be using it for my morning orange juice for sure 😊