Monday, November 1, 2010

Great Urban Race, San Diego

October 22nd  Joye and I traveled to San Diego to participate in the Great Urban Race.  Not many people have heard of this race, but it's held each year, in about 20 cities across the country.  Joye and I couldn't do the Portland race, so we took advantage of the fact that we know a few really nice people in San Diego and traveled there to do the race and visit friends. 
Friday October 22nd:
Friend details first:  Had a great visit with Theresa, lunch and shopping at Fashion Valley Mall. On the way home, we checked out the sunset at Mission Bay beach.  It was cool, so the boardwalk, beach and park were pretty empty.  Probably just tourists from Oregon and Washington, standing around to watch the sunset.  We hoped for a nice day on Saturday. 

Stayed overnight with Kathy and her two dogs Chloe and Oliver.  All three of them are characters.  Nice "girly chit chat and laughs with red wine" night.
Saturday October 23rd:
Woke up to grey and drizzle.  What?!!!!  Ok, yesterday probably started out the same way, it will clear by noon.  NOPE.  Great breakfast around the table with the three of us plus Jeri, Kathy's friend and race partner on team Bodacious Obecians (San Diego'ians).  Joye and I were team "2 Clueless in San Diego". After driving slowly through "cruise ship traffic", we arrived at Seaport Village at the north end of Marina Park, and headed to check in. 

Started to see teams in some pretty creative costumes.  Some of the recognizable characters were: Where's Waldo; Smurf, Batman and the Joker, Goldilocks and a bear, some ladybugs, road kill, and a "No Ma'am" team.
How would you like to walk around SD wearing some of this stuff?  Crazy.
Jeri and Kathy checking in.  Note: I wanted to wear blue hair just like the super girl!
At about 12 noon we were given our race clues, in a sealed envelope, and the rules....12 clues to 12 locations.  Complete as many as possible, and return by 5pm.  One clue is mandatory, and you can skip one clue without penalty. Follow the directions and only travel on foot or by public transportation (no bikes, skates, carts or taxi's).  You can use any computer or phone a friend resource that you want.  Everyone has the same clues.  The top three teams get $$$$ prizes, plus qualify for Nationals in Las Vegas in two weeks. All top 25 teams also qualify for LV.  We thought that sounded like a reasonable goal. 
Game Plan: figure out the clues and puzzles.  Plot their location on the map and decide what order to do them in.  Walk fast.  Use the bus as much as possible.  Drink plenty of fluids, snack on nuts along the way.  Don't skip any clues and take no penalties. Return to the finish around 3pm and be in the top 25.

Jeri and Kathy.  Hmmmm, they should be working instead of looking at the weird costumed people!

Joye hard at work, while I'm taking pictures of everyone.
Here's how it played out:

The Clues:

#1: Ahoy matey! Translate these numeral pennants to decipher the three digit address on N. Harbor Dr.

Head to this location where a nautical challenge awaits you. Using the supplies given, create the "king of knots".  Return to the finish with a stamp on this clue sheet & flyer as proof of completion.  You must also untie the knot.

Teams walking towards us after completing the knot tie at the USS Midway.

#2 Head to the Gaslamp district and enjoy a little taste of Chicago, but don't wolff it down too fast.  Upon arrival you will find a variety of toppings displayed.  Which two are not included on a traditional "Chicago style" dog?

#3: Mystery word from the letters in the circles ("X" here online). Make your way to Balboa Park theater that specializes in this form of performance:
       1. baseball park of the San Diego Padres  _ _ _ _ _    X _ _ _
       2. Mountains that lay to the east of SD.  _ _ _ X _ _
       3. SD's australian sister city. X _ _ _ _
       4. 5 Level outdoor shopping mall located downtown. _ _ _ _ _ _     X _ _ _ _
       5. Naval base SD is also known by this name. _ _nd   _ _ _ X _ _   _ _ _ _ _   _ _ _ _ _ _ _
       6. San Diegan and dummer of Sound Garden & Pearl Jam.  _ _ X X   _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
At that location, using supplies provided, create one character.  Use a minimum of 3 different materials and/or supplies to complete a face (eyes, nose and mouth).  Bring your character with you as proof.

#4     Unscramble the letters and follow your sweet tooth to this location.  A movie theater marquee masquerades this shop front that sells delectable and delightful treats, in what has now become a billion dollar industry.
Finish with all teammates posing with the shop mascot and bring flyer as proof of completion.

At the Ghiradelli store, yum!
#5   Whether you're looking for a ball cap for a Padres game or a top hat for a formal affair, there are over 150,000 options to choose from at this Seaport Village shop.  Hidden amongst them are ones that are black, fuzzy and sprouting horns.  Can you find them all?  Come try to identify the number of warrior helmets hidden in the store.  You get two trys.

#6   Enjoy a traditional south african pot pie or freshly brewwed espresso while admiring the work of local and international artists at this funky 6th avenue location.  Once there you must smell and correctly identify all three tea flavors.  Circle the correct answers below....

1.  Peppermint                                     2.  Vanilla                              3. Coconut
           or                                                      or                                          or
      Lavendar                                             Pomegranate                       Orange Spice

#7    Egg-cellent!  This quaint village is home to over 250 artists from the SD region.  Solve the following equation to determine the studio number of your next clue:
                                     (25-17) - (the square root of 144) + 10 + (2x4)
Locate the eggs displayed in the studio window and correctly match 4 of the 6 eggs to their corresponding  animal.  Only two guesses are allowed.
Ostrich    Quail     Turkey    Banty     Rhea     Emu

#8  Since 1992 the Toussaint Academy of Arts and Sciences have served homeless youth in SD county ages 14-17.  They strive to provide residents a comprehensive array of services needed to help them grown into healthy and successful adults.  Make your way to 1404 5th Ave, with at least two of the following school supplies to donate to this organization: 3 subject notebooks, erasers, pencils or pens, glue sticks.

#9  Make your way to the statue pictured to the right that is located at Fish Market Restaurant.  Once there one teammate must draw 2 movie quotes and incorporate both into a movie proposal to your teammate.  Return with a photo of the proprosal including all teammates as proof.

Me: "I'm in Love, I'm in Love and I don't care who knows it! ~ Elf"
Joye: "Toto, I don't think we're in Kanas anymore" ~ Dorothy.
We thought we had to make up our OWN movie quotes, here's what we were going to say:
                                  Joye: "Help me Obiwan Kenobi, you're my only hope..."
                             Me: "Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn if you say "yes"..."
#10   Complete the word search puzzle.  The remaining letters will spell out the name of the locaton for this clue (in order from left to right, top to bottom).  Make your way upstairs where all teammates must complete the challenge as demonstrated by the instructor.

#11  In a pickle?  Head to this spicy establishment located on west Beach St.  Return to finish with a photo of one teammate feeding the pickle to another teammate, and return with a flyer provided.  This clue is only available from noon until 4pm.  Strategize accordingly.

#12  Tic - Tac - Toe.  Must complete 3 of the 9 challenges to form a tic - tac- toe.  All required items must be clearly visible.  Strangers must be non-GUR participants.

Take one picture                     Take one picture                       Return to finish line w/
of a teammate                          of a teammate                           a hard copy of  a job
shaking a real dogs paw           honking a strangers horn.          application.

Return to finish line w/             Take one pic of all                   Take one pic of all
a single piece of fruit                teammates pretending              teammates high-fiving a
(excluding banana)                  to dive into a fountain.              stranger in uniform.

Take one picture of               Return to finish w/ a penny          Take one picture of all
all teammates posing in          dated between 1961- 1979.        teammates posing w/someone
front of a trolley                                                                       w/ 2 or more visible tattoo's.

Pretending to dive into the fountain.  Duh.
Joye, honking a strangers horn.

The Result:
Dizzle; 40 mins solving the clues, getting addresses, phoning friends for answer and plotting a course on the map;  A lot of walking, 1 bus ride, a nice walk through Balboa Park. Partly sunny, hot and sweaty;  Costumed people walking all over downtown San Diego; 11 clues completed (no spicy pickle), no penalties; time 4:10:44;  great time. 
We finished 241 and 242 (both our teams), out of 331 finishing teams.  43 other teams did not finish.  Not bad girls!  Now we've got the benchmark time to beat.  We'll see you again San Diego!

Coming up on the finish line, "posers" a head of us.  They had dark black roots....Madonna's?!

Our finish time.  It took me 4 seconds to get the camera out and take the picture.

Our race number, "proof flyers", bus pass, map and homemade puppet.
Almost to the finish and Kathy points out the Kanas City BBQ place where Tom Cruise had "that lovin' feelin'".

This years winner are a couple of runners, who finished the course in just under 2 hours:

Winners at finish line, without their "bouncies"

The winners in full costume.

The "Where's Waldo" couple won best costume

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