Chicago Marathon Kick-off – Meeting Dathan Ritzenhein!

Chicago Marathon registration opens today at noon!

I was honored to be invited to a registration kick-off event last night at the House of Blues. Kelly was also invited, so we parked in a new secret $2 lot about a mile away, and ended up walking the last couple blocks with another attendee, a guy who is a CARA Pace Group leader. (Whose name I never got.) He asked us how we got invited to the event … when we told him we were bloggers, he seemed a bit surprised. Upon arriving, Kelly and I discovered we were on the “media” list. Are you proud of me, Dad?? Apparently blogging is the new journalism. (I could write a whole series of posts on that topic, based on convos with my dad, a veteran of the newspaper industry. I bring the opposite viewpoint, as a public relations professional.)

Anyway, we arrived just in time to see Race Director Carey Pinkowski introduce Dathan Ritzenhein, who will be running both the Shamrock Shuffle on April 7 and the Chicago Marathon on October 13.

Chicago marathon kick off

Carey also presented Ritz with the first 2013 Chicago Marathon bib.

Chicago marathon kick off

After a few remarks from Ritz, we headed out in the mild but rainy and windy night for a fun run. I ran with Kelly and Lindsey, and we did “3” miles at a leisurely pace. (It was super windy on the Lakefront Path, so we turned around just shy of 1.5 miles.) We also ran on the Chicago Riverwalk, which I haven’t really been on before.

Chicago marathon kick off

After the fun run, we went back to the House of Blues for some snacks and a chance to meet Ritz! Kelly was super excited to meet him! She got to see him run the marathon last year.


Please excuse the picture above, had to do a little photoshopping to get it even looking this “good.”

Chicago marathon kick off

Oh Ritz, you’re so dreamy 🙂

The event last night also included early marathon registration for attendees (at the regular price). Sadly, I am not running the Chicago Marathon this year, so I didn’t register. I had such a blast running it last year and would love to run it again. But as I’ve mentioned, I’m trying to limit myself to spending $500 on races for 2013. So far I have spent $338 on this year’s races … at $175, the marathon would put me over budget. But there is always next year!

Good luck to everyone who does register! I’m curious how quickly the race will sell out. And if you’re running it this year, let me know! I definitely plan to be there spectating!

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15 Comments on “Chicago Marathon Kick-off – Meeting Dathan Ritzenhein!”

  1. Awesome event! And super cool you got to meet Ritz!!

    I bet it will sell out before the weekend. It’s crazy how popular races have gotten, that now you have to register for them 8+ months in advance.

  2. haha! I’m totally in your picture of Cary and Dathan onstage…how have we not met in real life yet! And oh-my-good-gracious I’ve not added up my running expenses, I afraid to, but with your good example perhaps I must! Ach!

  3. Kudos to you for sticking with a race budget. I always have high hopes, but I have an addiction to finisher medals. 🙂 It sounds like the kickoff party was a lot of fun, and I’m sure meeting Ritz was awesome. I hope you’re going to frame that photo!

  4. I wish i would have known! I would have given you a lock of my hair to give to Ritz! Jk. Maybe. I might copy your $500 race budget limit this year. Although sadly, i think i am already approaching it. #FWP.

  5. Great picture of the city from the riverwalk. Even though it was crappy out, it was really pretty to run along the river.

    I’m glad you guys ended up getting a decent picture with Ritz, even if all odds were against you!

  6. Very cool that you got to meet Ritz. I always think about that Runners World story about how he crushed Ryan Hall and Alan Webb to win the high school cross country championship. He was a machine back then. Anyway, that’s tremendous discipline to go to that event and not register.

  7. So awesome that you got to meet Ritz!!! What is he like in person? And how awesome that you got a “press pass” to the event last night. You’ve got some mega clout in the Chicago running community. =)

    So you’ve officially decided not to run Chicago, eh? Any further updates on your marathon debate for this year?

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