No sweat: ‘Micro-marathon’ to raise funds, highlight downtown

November 25, 2018

Whoever invented the phrase “no pain, no gain” obviously never got wind of the micro-marathon, an innovative concept bestowing maximum reward for minimal effort.

The Brownsville Market Square Micromarathon 0.5k is signing up “competitors” for the Dec. 1 event, which will raise money for education initiatives of the United Way of Southern Cameron County while demonstrating how much fun can be had downtown and highlighting the area’s restaurants and bars.

That’s according to Traci Wickett, UWSCC president and CEO, who got the idea for the 546-yard “race” from a similar event held in another Texas community.

“I shamelessly ripped off the idea from Boerne, Texas,” she said. “Boerne did one earlier this year and it just sounded like so much fun. They framed it as ‘a race for the rest of us.’ It’s just a silly send-up of the real, serious race experience. We’re calling ours ‘all of the swag, none of the sweat.’”

Participants get medals, T-shirts and the “pretentious oval Euro car sticker announcing to the world that they accomplished the 0.5k,” Wickett said.

Krispy Kreme will provide doughnuts at the midway point for carb-starved runners, while hydration stations will serve alcohol beverages as opposed to the usual, boring cups of water found at other marathons, she said. Non-alcoholic beverages will also be available, as will vegan doughnuts, Wickett said.

“With most races you have to be there at 6 a.m.,” she said. “We don’t want people showing their faces until 11, which is a much more civilized hour. This is more of a brunch race.”

It’s a race only in the loosest sense, however, since everyone gets a medal, Wickett said, stressing that costumes are encouraged.

“There will be gigantic, gaudy trophies for best costumes for individuals and best costumes for relay teams,” she said.

Standard registration is $30 and includes the above-mentioned perks. Hard-core underachievers, though, can shell out for the $50 VIP registration in order to experience truly executive-level coddling.

“The VIP option is for those who just really don’t want to exert at all,” Wickett said. “If you’re a VIP we will drive you around the race course in your very golf cart. We’ll mist you with Evian water so you don’t get too warm. You’ll get an even bigger medal.”

After the race VIPs will be treated to pizza and beverages at a “swanky courtyard reception” at Dodici Pizza & Wine, she said.

“We’re actually having tons of VIP registrants,” Wickett said. “We think it’s going to be a blast.”


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