I ran many of my first half marathons with my cousin, Monkey. Here’s how the races typically went:
- Pick a random new city to explore (Philly, Louisville, South Bend, Nashville)
- Look up places to stuff our face, drink beer & find random photo ops (think: posing with a wax Colonel Sanders at a Kentucky visitor center)
- Judge the races by their expos, swag & medals (baby goats at finish line were the best; laminated cards as “medals” were the worst)
- Recover by drinking Sprite, taking naps, ralphing (Monkey) – not necessarily in that order
Our racing together stopped when I moved out to Seattle, but once I returned to Columbus, it seemed like a perfect time to pick up another race. The St. Louis Hot Chocolate 15K allowed us to tackle another state together, while enjoy a trip with our moms in a city with some family history for us. Here’s the download from our trip:
The RACE: You do a Hot Chocolate for the chocolate and the finish line did not disappoint. I loaded up on marshmallows & hot chocolate and was pretty satisfied. Plus their medals were pretty rad & no one barfed. Woohoo!
The FOOD: St. Louis is known for its Italian food on the Hill & its beer (hello, Budweiser!) so we did both with Charlie Gitto’s & Four Hands Brewing. Even though we were treated with chocolate post-race, that didn’t stop us from seeking out some of St. Louis’ other sweet treats. La Patisserie Chouquette made all of us birds drool with their yummy cakes & macarons. The standout of the trip was dinner at Vicia. Our meals were so good that my even my very skeptical aunt walked away a fan and that’s saying a lot!
The SITES: While we did the obligatory Arch visit, I was a bit underwhelmed since it was under construction & you couldn’t go up in it. Instead, I got my sightseeing fill at the City Garden which has several fun sculptures & public art pieces. Favorites included Tom Otterness’ Kindly Geppetto & Tom Claassen’s Untitled (Two Rabbits). There’s a lot of other public art around – fierce puma murals near The Grove & some risqué mer-people in Aloe Plaza. If bronze dongs & bunny butts are your thing, you’ll be into STL.