If you like running, dogs and pancakes, this fun run is for you. This is the first year I’ve run the RunGo Dash for Dogs but I’ve heard a lot of great things about it in the last few years. It’s a fun little community event that also raises money for BC and Alberta Guide Dogs. They are an organization that trains guide dogs for the visually-impaired, as well as autism and PTSD support dogs. They are vital members of the family for individuals who need them. You may have also seen RunGo on my blog before. It’s a locally-made app that gives you turn-by-turn directions on pre-made routes. You can check out that review here. The creator of the app, Craig Slagel, is also the race director for Dash for Dogs. Let’s give his race some love.
Dash for Dogs
This 5k and 10k showcases the Stanley Park trail system. Unfortunately, due to some icy sections in the park, the 10K route was changed to 2 loops of the 5k course. It started at Brockton Oval and made its way across the Rose Garden to South Creek Trail, west along Beaver Lake and north to get onto the seawall. By this point you’re about halfway done the loop, so keep going and head up the Lumberman’s Arch hill and back to the start along the aquarium. If you’re on the 5k, you’re done, but if not, you cross the finish line and head back out for a second loop. The perk for this race is you get to run with your dog (on leash) and meet other dogs and their lovely owners. Although there’s a timing clock at the start/finish, there’s no chip timing.
After the race, runners were treated to some pancakes, bacon and fruit prepared by awesome volunteers. Stanley Park Brewing was also there to quench your thirst with beer samples. There were a few vendor tents there including 5 Peaks (which I helped with), Distance Runwear, Lorna Jane, and Fat Dog 120. Bosley’s was also there giving out nice goodie bags for people with dogs. It contained a variety of treats and even a ball for your furry friend.
All. The. Dogs.
Remember the dog that kept getting distracted by a squirrel in Up? That was us when we saw all the dogs approaching Brockton Oval. Dogs of all breeds and sizes showed up to get a good workout with their owners on a beautiful, crisp sunny day. The 10k started first. Ice was only an issue at the Beaver Lake section so a lot of people were taking it easy along that stretch. Seeing a frozen Beaver Lake was also a plus. Aside from a grumpy hiker that refused to get out of my way, as I made space for her to go around me, the first few kilometers were pretty good. Until…
Hey did we miss a turn?
There must’ve been a miscommunication with a course marshal because we were directed straight instead of heading up the Lumberman’s Arch hill. A number of us ran back to Brockton Oval via the seawall around the lighthouse. Thankfully that loop was just a bit over 5 km so we kept going through the finish line and started our second lap. We saw a lot of puzzled looks as we emerged from the wrong side. The ironic thing is, before the run started, they said the route is on RunGo. I should have turned it on. Cuski ran with me the whole way and we ended up with 1:11:04, according to my watch. Race organizers did acknowledge this little mishap in the post-race email and apologized. The mistake really wasn’t a big deal to me but it was a good thing they sent an email out.
Pancakes and Prizes
After the race, we headed straight for the pancakes. Sorry I had no photos of the food but just take my word for it. It was a great post-race snack and my generous portion of bacon replenished some of the salt I lost. While stuffing our faces, we heard Craig doing prize giveaways. People won stuff like race entries, hats, beer, and lots more. They also gave prizes to the top fundraisers, which included Cuski! He was the third highest fundraiser and he was able to choose a prize from the table. Naturally, he chose the Yellow Dog gift pack which included a growler, a gift certificate, and a dog leash made out of recycled bicycle materials with built-in bottle opener. Congrats to him! Since he surpassed his donation goal, he also received a puppy sponsorship, which meant he helped fund a future guide dog’s training.
Would I Do It Again?
I would love to do this race again, properly this time. I loved this fun run because it was very chill, no pressure, and there were so many dogs. Too bad they’re all faster than me 😛 Aside from the miscommunication about the route, it was a fun race. Remember that it’s not chip-timed so hope you’re ok with that before you sign up.
Would you run with the doggies next year and bring your dog?