Monday, December 1, 2014

The 5K That…Wasn’t. (FitMas Giveaway #1)

Happy December! I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! It’s officially the Christmas season, my favorite time of the year!  I’m excited to announce a special Christmas treat for you guys! In the weeks leading up to Christmas, I am going to host a few giveaways – one every week through the week of Christmas (that’s four giveaways total).

Today’s giveaway will follow this post, so stay tuned to find out what it’s all about – it’s a good one, you won’t want to miss it!


Several weeks ago, I travelled to College Station, Texas with my sister-in-law and a few friends to participate in Santa’s Wonderland 5K and Fun Run.

We knew the weather forecast for the evening was TERRIBLE (rainy, wind, strong thunderstorms), AND we knew the possibility of the race being postponed to Sunday evening per the race directors emails prior to race day.

We were driving 3+ hours out of town for this event and weren’t staying overnight – plus, running the race on Sunday night would have put us home incredibly late, then up for work the following day – no way.

Santas Wonderland 5K (2)

Instead, we decided to adopt my “When Life Hands You Rain, Play In It” philosophy, and that’s exactly what we did!

The monsoon rain began as we neared College Station. The weather was so crazy, Kayla’s GPS thought we were driving through the Texas A&M Golf Course!

Santas Wonderland 5K (3)

We were about 2 hours out from College Station when the official word was made about the race being postponed to Sunday evening. We were bummed but instead of letting the rain get us down, we made the decision to continue driving and make the best of the situation, no matter what.

Santas Wonderland 5K (14)

We finally made it!

My first impression on entering Santa’s Wonderland was literally “WOW!”…and that was just the gift shop!

For starters, EVERYONE was super nice….like Disney World nice. I couldn’t get over how overly kind and accommodating (almost) all of the workers were.

Santas Wonderland 5K (17)

After picking up our shirts and race packets, we changed into our race “outfits” (we had shirts especially made for this race) and that’s when all the fun began!

Our first task was to take a picture with Santa!

Santas Wonderland 5K (16)

Notice that we are all “Kayla’s Children”!

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I love the way our picture turned out!

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We also said a quick “hello” to Rudolph :)

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The workers inside Santa’s Wonderland loved our outfits and were all so sympathetic about the weather/the fact that the race was postponed.

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After taking every combination of photos available inside the gift shop, we decided to try our luck on the hay ride. When we first arrived to pick up our packets, we were told that 5K participants could receive 1/2 off the price of the hayride per the Race Texas workers. We didn’t pre-purchase tickets and looking back, I’m so glad we didn’t.

You see, the entire point of this race was to run through Santa’s Wonderland Christmas light display. Me + millions of Christmas lights (think Osborne Lights level here) = a very happy Karen and my entire reason for driving 3+ hours for a 5K. Since the race was postponed, our chances of running through the lights was taken away. They also weren’t allowing anyone to drive through the display area in their personal vehicles because of the crazy rain/weather. Basically, a hayride was our only option to see the lights.

Santas Wonderland 5K (7)

Whomp Whomp. Crazy rain. It literally felt like the Wine & Dine Half ALL over again!

As we attempted to purchase 1/2 price hayride tickets, we were told no – apparently we were given false information about runners receiving discounted tickets for the hayride. When questioned who else we could speak with, we were told “I’m it”.
Not taking no for an answer, one of the girls in our group sought out a manager on her own. Again, let me reiterate…(almost) everyone at Santa’s Wonderland was AMAZING and incredibly helpful and really helped us have a great time despite the circumstances.

We found a manager and explained our situation. Basically, this is how I felt – We drove for 3+ hours to run a 5K that we paid $60 to run. No, the rain was not Santa’s Wonderland’s fault. However, we were not able to make Sunday night’s event and deferment to next year’s event wasn’t being offered. So basically, we drove 3+ hours and paid $60 to receive a t-shirt and have the opportunity to enter few gift shops where we could spend more money on Christmas trinkets and gifts if we wanted to do so. Oh, and if we wanted to see the lights that we already paid to see, we could pay an additional fee to ride a hayride and see them.

Needless to say, the manager was super understanding and told us to stay put so he could work on solving our problem right away.

Santas Wonderland 5K (8)

While everyone else stayed put, I ventured off in search of a cup of coffee! I loved this deal – for a set fee, I purchased a mug and received free refills of coffee all night long! Score!

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Yummy treats!

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Before long, we were granted four hayride tickets at no cost! We couldn’t believe it and were so grateful for the manager’s help!

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One of my favorite part of the lights display was the fact that festive music was piped in throughout the whole route!

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Although it rained on us the entire time, we managed to enjoy ourselves and laughed through most of the 25 minute hayride!

Santas Wonderland 5K (20)Santas Wonderland 5K (21)

I could honestly say I’d never ridden a hay ride through a large Christmas lights display in the pouring rain before! It’s been added to and crossed off my bucket list all at the same time!

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The lights were beautiful – I would definitely go again to see them on a non-rainy day!

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Wouldn’t you know – as soon as we were finished with the hayride, it stopped raining (of course).

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THIS guy is awesome! He’s the one who helped us out with the hayride situation and we stopped to thank him as soon as the hayride was over!

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We enjoyed a bit of the nighttime musical entertainment and bonfire before saying goodnight.

Santas Wonderland 5K (13)Santas Wonderland 5K (26)

Thanks so much, Race Texas and Santa’s Wonderland for helping us have a great time that night, despite the circumstances! I’ll definitely visit again and hope to run Santa’s Wonderland 5K (for real this time) one day soon!

Santas Wonderland 5K (19)

Now for the fun part – week #1’s giveaway!

Like the shirts we wore for this event? Interested in a shirt of your own? Well, here’s your chance!

One lucky winner will receive:

He sees you when you're running, he knows when you lift weights

  • “He sees you when you’re running, he knows when you lift weights” – 1 dry fit shirt
  • Size Medium (8-10) – although I found that it fits small (Only a size medium is available)
He sees you when you're running he knows when you lift weights

Enter through Rafflecopter below. This giveaway will run for one week’s time and will end next Sunday evening.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Merry Christmas and good luck!

Have you ever had a race cancelled or postponed due to rain?


  1. I don't mind running in the rain. It makes me feel strong! :)

  2. I've only ever done one training run in the rain and it was Summer so it wasn't that bad. I've never had to race in the rain, yet! That really stinks that you didn't get to run this race but looks like you had a fun time at the village anyway! Yay to the guy who gave you the free hayride!

  3. You came to my town! That rain was ridiculous...we had our 12 miler scheduled Saturday morning and I was so glad it held off until, literally, as we were driving away from the park after we'd finished.

    We ran the 1 miler of that race a couple of years ago (again, after having run 12 miles that morning). Got the best part of the race, with only running in the lights (and not on the bypass, for the 5K). It was really neat and I'm sorry you didn't get to do your race but how cool that you had an adventure there, anyway.

  4. Sorry to hear about the race but it sure seems like Santa's Wonderland more than made up for it. lol I'm yet to have a race cancelled but you never know.

  5. Wow....that rainstorm was unbelievable. So glad the problem was resolved and you could enjoy the hayride. We ran our turkey trot in light rain, but I have never had a race cancelled due to inclement weather.

  6. You girls look adorable and it looks like you made the absolute most of your day! I love that shirt, it's amazing.

  7. That looks like some great Christmas lights! And I love you take a hay ride through it! Fun!

  8. I'm so glad you were able to make the most of a bad situation!!!

    And PS, if my some odd chance I win through my Pinterest follow, my Pinterest is being wonky so I'm not 100% sure I followed you. Please let me know and I will ASAP!

  9. I haven't had any canceled races before. But I almost didn't run my "comeback" 5K last month because I wasn't sure if my baby would be OK w/o me and if my boobs would not leak. :P

  10. That sounds like some crazy weather, but you all seemed to make the most of it. Love the shirt!

  11. Wow, way to make the best out of a bad situation.

  12. Out here in Portland, OR, we if I don't run in the rain...well, there's always summer. Your shirts were great--hoping I win one!


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