The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run needs thousands of volunteers to make The Runner’s Rite Of Spring® the finest 10-mile race in the nation. From helpful people handing out bibs at the expo to smiling fans working water stops along the course, there are so many volunteers that impact the race experience!
One of my favorite race day traditions is to make it a point to thank the volunteers. I know I couldn’t finish the race without the volunteers at the water stops, and might have been lost without the volunteers answering my questions at the expo. I am thankful for everyone who took time out of their days to make my race experience better.
Did you know it takes more than 2,000 volunteers to organize the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run?
No doubt about it, volunteers are the fuel that keeps the 43-year-old DC racing tradition running smoothly.
Volunteers are so important to the success of the race, the organizers throw in some serious perks to thank everyone involved. The most sought after? A guaranteed entry for the next year’s race. So if you love all things Cherry Blossom and had hoped to kick off your spring running season with the Credit Union race, have no fear! Volunteer, and you won’t have to go through the pins-and-needles, hand-wringing lottery process. (We’ve lost one or two nights of sleep crossing our fingers to get in around lottery time).
So I talked to Nita Lalla Roncone, the volunteer coordinator to find out what you need to know about volunteering for the 2015 Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Miler.
Roncone says there are more than 50 spots left for volunteers, scattered over four days and two states (plus the District of Columbia).
“Volunteers pick up elite athletes from the airport, direct runners from the metro, distribute t-shirts, hand out water, organize runner-bibs, sell merchandise, control the crowd, cheer the runners, and so much more,” Roncone says.
Roncone says the best part of being a volunteer is meeting the runners.
“Seeing them at the expo, after they have trained hard for this race and are gearing up for the big run, and then seeing the joy (and pain) on their faces after they conquer the distance and wrap themselves in a heat blanket… knowing that you were a part of the magic reminds our volunteers that we are all part of something bigger,” she says.
And for runners who got in? Don’t forget to thank the volunteers.
“Volunteers are the foundation of the race,” Roncone says. “Can you imagine having a race without volunteers? There would be no water, no medals, no entertainment. You wouldn’t even know what your time is when you cross the finish line since there would be no one with a microphone to tell you the time. We have so many volunteers that you see – handing out t-shirts and race packets at the expo – and so many volunteers that you don’t see. Those are the ones who set up everything and take it all down. They make the magic happen: tents get set up, water stations are built, heat blankets are unloaded and distributed, as are bananas, water, and food.”
Not a runner? The entry is transferrable – and a great way to make a runner friend’s day. Convinced? Head on over and sign up here!
Oh and how could we forget? Volunteers also score a 2015 Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile long-sleeve volunteer t-shirt.
From the CUCB blog team, a huge THANK YOU to everyone to makes this incredible race what it is! See you on the course!
Natalie started running in the second grade and hasn’t stopped since. In her day job, she is a reporter on the breaking news team at USA TODAY. In the way-too-early mornings and shouldn’t-you-be-exhausted-by-now evenings she’s busy running, practicing yoga at her favorite studio, acting as President of the American News Women’s Club or writing for Run Washington, HalfMarathons.net and Runner’s Breakfast. Natalie is a chronically starving marathoner, loud laugher and wannabe triathlete in training for her first half Ironman in June.
We’re so excited to finally meet those of you we’ve been tweeting, blogging, pinning, and Facebooking with for the last few months!
In addition to our 5 PM – 8 PM Packet Pickup Happy Hour on Friday, we have more fun events at the Expo this weekend that with think you might want to know about:
Clinic Schedule at the Expo
4 PM – 4:50 PM Greg Meyer, 1983 Cherry Blossom Champion; current American record holder for 10 Miles (46:13) and 1983 Boston Marathon champion. Come hear Greg talk about how it’s time for a U.S. male runner to break his 31-year-old mark.
4:50 PM – 5 PM Stretch break
5 PM – 5:50 PM Jen Rhines, Three time U.S. Olympian at 5,000-meters, 10,000-meters and the marathon.
5:50 PM – 6 PM Stretch break
6 PM – 6:50 PM Dr. Betty Smith, Learn the secrets of longevity from our speaker who is an ultra-marathoner and top age group perfomer. She has been running for 46 years and has covered more than 100,000 miles with minimal injuries.
10 AM – 10:50 A.M. Greg Meyer, 1983 Cherry Blossom Champion; current American record holder for 10 Miles (46:13) and 1983 Boston Marathon champion. Come hear Greg talk about how it’s time for a U.S. male runner to break his 31-year-old mark.
10:50 AM – 11 AM Stretch break
11 AM – 11:50 A.M. CPR Overview, Come hear the essentials about performing CPR. This is not certification, but an explanation of how to administer this life saving technique.
11:50 AM – 12 Noon Stretch break
12 PM – 12:50 PM Janet Bawcom, 2012 U.S. Olympian, American Recordholder for 10 miles in a single sex race.
12:50 PM – 1 PM Stretch break
1 PM – 1:50 PM American Championships Panel, Learn about the rising fortunes of American distance running in a roundtable discussion with six entrants in the U.S. 10 Mile Championships
1:50 PM – 2 PM Stretch break
2 PM – 2:50 PM CPR Overview, Come see the essentials about performing CPR. This is not certification, but an explanation of how to administer this life saving technique.
2:50 PM – 3 PM Stretch break
3 PM – 3:50 PM Dr. Betty Smith, Learn the secrets of longevity from our speaker who is an ultra-marathoner and top age group perfomer. She has been running for 46 years and has covered more than 100,000 miles with minimal injuries.
This is it, the moment you’ve all been waiting for: the final Expo booth list is ready! Here’s who you can expect to see at the Building Museum from 3pm – 9pm on Friday, April 4 and 9am – 5pm on Saturday, April 5:
Beyond Body Pads
Bushido Challenge – Obstacle Race
Charm City Run
Rock n Roll Marathon Series
Corrigan Sports Enterprises
Credit Union Miracle Day/Children’s Miracle Network
Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union
Dogs on Deployment
Elite Sport Optics
Feet First Sports
Fleet Feet Sports Annapolis
Hoka One One
In the Zone
ING Financial Partners
Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
Magic Massage Therapy
Muscular Dystrophy Association
National Cherry Blosoom Festival
National Running Center
Navy – Air ForceHalf Marathon & Navy 5 Miler
Navy Federal Credit Union
NYRR Team for Kids
One More Mile
Paiges Promotions for Wyndham
Potomac River Running
Ragnor Trail Relay
Real Time Pain Relief
RUseeN Reflective Apparel
Small Planet Food
Teens Run DC
The Stick (RPI)
Timex/Nova Retail LLC
Ultima Health Products
University of Maryland
USA Sport Eyeware
Woodrow Wilson Bridge Half Marathon
Zooma Women’s Race Series