Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Wicked 10k as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming aBibRave Pro (ambassador), and check outBibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!
I FINALLY got to check the Wicked 10k off my race “bucket” list – and what a great time I had! I made a weekend out of it and signed up for the Pumpkin Smash Challenge – the Monster Mile on Friday night followed by the Wicked 10K Saturday morning; not only was it a great tune up for my legs but I got to bring home an *extra* sparkly Challenge medal.
I stayed at the Courtyard Marriott Oceanside – one of the race sponsored hotels (hello discount rate!) It was super close to the Monster Mile start line and close to the Wicked 10k finish line. I never had to walk more than 1 mile the entire weekend, so that was extremely nice.
The expo was easy to get in and out of at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. I didn’t spend too much time checking out the booths but there was a nice assortment of vendors and races present. Plenty of cute photo ops and props were around and you are able to get your “over 21” wristband here – HIGHLY recommend to beat the lines on race day. Runners received a short sleeve cotton t-shirt for the Monster Mile and a long sleeve technical t-shirt for the 10k. As always, the swag was great. Now it was time to get ready for the race!
The Monster Mile: I was trying to think of the last time I “raced” a mile and I literally think it was probably P.E. class in middle school. The start was a little chaotic, there were corrals by anticipated finish time but of course everyone just kind of piled in where-ever they wanted to. What was really fun was people watching while waiting for the race to start – the costumes were great! It was awesome to see some creative (and some scary) costumes and trying to mentally envision how people would actually run in them. Luckily, this was just a mile 🙂
The course was straight down the boardwalk. There weren’t too many lights or overall course decorations, but it was at night and gave that spooky atmosphere none the less. After a flat and fast mile, the finish line greeted you with a nice medal, water and snacks. A short walk lead you to the finish line party at the Shack. As soon as you walked in you got a free post-race beverage – ORANGE CRUSH for me! I had never been to this venue and it was amazing. Definitely the perfect spot to hang out with your friends after a race. Overall, I would give the Monster Mile an 8/10 and would absolutely do it again.
The next morning was the main event so I walked a mile back to my hotel, ordered a healthy dinner (it was hard to not carb load when I’m used to running/traveling for half marathons) and called it a night! I woke up at 6AM (8AM start for the 10k) and got ready for the main event.
The Wicked 10k: The 10k starts in front of the convention center, which was about 1.2 mile from my hotel. I left at 7 allowing myself an hour to get there. It was 70 degrees and actually quite humid for race day which I wasn’t expecting, but was glad I packed shorts and short sleeve shirt to race in. The walk to the start was uneventful and I was quickly met by masses of costumes, music and excitement! The Convention Center was open which was nice (hello real restrooms) and there was plenty of space to spread out and wait for the start.
The course was fun, flat and packed with spectators. There was several noteable course entertainment stops : walking through zombies, thriller dancers and a candy corn “trick or treat” stop. There were plenty of water stops (about every 2 miles) which was nice for the warm day. Overall, the best way to describe the course was “alive” – everyone was smiling, laughing and having a good time. The final mile (ish) was on the boardwalk so you get to say HI! to King Neptune as you approach the finish line. Again, the finish line greeted you with bottled water, granola bars, a nice medal and finishers item – glass pint glass and a koozie.
After making in through the finishers corral, you enter the after party on the beach! Baker’s Crust soup, Blue Moon Beer, Angry Orchard Cider and live music. There are tables set up to link up with your friends and enjoy your post race brew. All of this, of course, with the lovely backdrop of the ocean. One of the sponsor non-profit organizations was onsite and did a k9 demonstration on the beach which was really cool to see.
Overall I would give this race weekend a 8/10. The races were both super organized, fun and well executed. The medals are sparkly, well designed and had nice ribbons (always key!) along with solid finishers items. J&A always puts on amazing events and the Wicked 10k weekend tells no different story. I’m already thinking about a costume for next year…