Friday, February 14, 2020

2020 Rock n Roll New Orleans Expo

This past weekend, Rock n Roll held its annual New Orleans Marathon weekend . Despite being on the upside of an injury (and with a half a second of a thought to dropping to the 10K), my friend Melissa and I agreed to run/walk the half that we were initially registered for. 

We stayed at Hilton Riverside which was located right next door to the Ernest N Morial Convention Center (where the expo was being held). Don't let the "right next door" part fool you - this is a HUGE convention center and the walk was a rather long one!

A change that Rock n Roll has made within the past few years is the elimination of race waivers. You basically sign your online waiver when you register, so you don't need an extra paper in hand once you arrive. There's a mobile app where you can look up your bib number and then line up accordingly by bib number to pick up your packet. It's super easy and wastes less paper!

Rock n Roll also always has you walk the red carpet on your way to check in! What a fun touch!

Another fun touch this year was the addition of gold, green, and purple mardi gras beads! I love it when each race experience really hits on the cultural aspect of the area. So fun!

It wouldn't be a Rock n Roll Expo without the traditional Chocolate Milk finish line photo!

After picking up our bags and shirts, we made our way to the Brooks showroom floor to check out the merchandise this year.

My favorite were the light up number signs! (Not for sale, sadly.)

We spent a good 45 minutes or so here, looking through the merchandise and trying things on. I came away with a long sleeved finishers shirt (which I love) and a Rock n Roll New Orleans coffee mug. I've never purchased a coffee mug at their Expo because they weren't race authentic enough. Well, this one had purple, green, and gold insignias all over it so yes, it's now mine!

We made our purchases, then walked over to the Main Expo floor to check everything else out.

A super fun experience was put on at the Humana booth where my friend and I received matching "tattoos"!

Another fun "New Orleans" touch to this race experience were the multitude of Mardi Gras costumes, parade floats, and photo opportunities.

We definitely took advantage of them all!

Oh yes, and a giant crawfish...almost forgot about him!

I also registered for next year's Rock n Roll New Orleans half. If you register for the following year's events at the Expo, you can usually take advantage of special pricing and receive a free tshirt!

After leaving the Expo, we walked back over to our room to drop off our purchases, then made our way to the Riverwalk Mall for some beignets!

Although the "authentic" Cafe du Monde is located in the French Quarter, they do offer various locations throughout the city and this one happened to be inside of the Riverwalk Mall. It was super easy and convenient for us, so we went with it!

Watching them make the beignets was super fun, too! She literally scooped these up and tossed them in the fryer. (See instagram stories for footage!)

The remainder of our day was spent touring a plantation home located just outside of New Orleans and eating pizza at our favorite, Outlaw pizza. It was a fun day in all and ended with an early bed time for the runners.

Up next: Rock n Roll New Orleans Half Marathon race reap!

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