Race Report: LivingSocial Glow-in-the-Dark 5K Dance Party

Last year, I ran the Chicago Glo Run 6K and had a good time, so when LivingSocial reached out to me a few weeks ago to see if I’d like a press pass [free bib] to attend their Glow-in-the-Dark 5K Dance Party, I said sure, I’d love to attend. Then I forgot about it. Then they followed-up this week with the press pass info, and I realized that I didn’t know anyone else doing this event. But I figured I could use it as run #2 for my last double before Ragnar (OMG less than a week), plus the 90s kid in me loves anything resembling a rave.

It rained yesterday afternoon, but luckily stopped right as I was getting to Soldier Field.

living social 5K dance party

I parked easily, and eventually found the Customer Service tent, where I was supposed to get my bib. Even though I was about a half hour late for the time I was told to check in, I was still able to get my bib, and I made into into the front of the corral.

living social 5K dance party

Based on my experience at the Glo Run, and the amount of runners that turned out for this event, I wanted to get as close to the front as possible. I crossed the start with the first wave of runners. I knew this was an untimed event, so I wore my Garmin to keep my own time. Normally I don’t do untimed “races” but in this case, given that it was my second run of the day and I planned on running again the following day, it was probably better for me that it was untimed so I didn’t have the same motivation to race it. I ran the 5K in 33:06, and I’m counting this as a fartlek because I did a lot of stopping to take pictures, and then sprinting. So basically, I ran this like an 8-year-old. Also, I ate a sandwich [wreck on wheat from Potbelly] less than two hours before the start [so smart], so I had a side-stitch pretty much any time I was running.

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The course headed south from Soldier Field, through the McCormick Place tunnel (which had some large puddles), and further south on the service road before we turned and headed north on the Lakefront Path. We ran past McCormick Place and got a sweet view of the skyline before running through the “light tunnel.”

living social 5K dance party

Blurry. Darn.

living social 5K dance party

I’m so decorating my apartment like this for Christmas.

They had speakers throughout the course playing music, as well as lots of colored lights.

The course went around the north side of Soldier Field and finished on the west side.

living social 5K dance party


Then we could head into the stadium and onto the field for the dance party. [LivingSocial was also selling tickets for just the dance party.] They were selling food, beer and mixed drinks (and probably non-alcoholic drinks) on the field on up in the stands, but I didn’t bring any cash.

living social 5K dance party

The field starting filling up as more people finished, and the DJ was doing a good job of making sure it really was a dance party. Luckily the rain held off. Also on the jumbotron, they were showing pictures and tweets using the event hashtag #5Kdanceparty.

living social 5K dance party

I hung out for maybe 30 minutes, walking around and taking pictures like a creeper, before taking off. If I had attended this with friends, and brought cash for booze, it would have been a lot of fun! It was still a pretty cool event, and a great way to get non-runners running (or walking) and dancing.

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11 Comments on “Race Report: LivingSocial Glow-in-the-Dark 5K Dance Party”

    1. Haha, thanks! The Wreck is my go-to Potbelly’s sandwich. I always get it with everything. So good.

      I did not get any swag, but I saw other runners with shirts and glow necklaces, bracelets, “glasses” and “hats.” I don’t know if I didn’t get any because I was late and it looked like the tent I got my bib from was kind of packed up by the time I got there.

    1. it’s a pretty rare distance. that race also used the tagline “late night six” so they were going for a play on words. but I think they changed it to a 5K this year.

  1. I love Potbelly Wrecks – they are my favorite! That race sounds like fun and your pictures are very cool. It is really nice once in a while to run a race purely for fun and shenanigans, especially when it’s not even being timed. Soldier Field is a cool venue, too.

  2. This looks like a blast! I’ve never participated in a nighttime race, but I would have tried this one!

    I’m with you on untimed races. They drive me crazy – I need that sense of organization.

  3. Wreck on wheat is MY favorite Potbelly’s sandwich! 🙂 Do you normally not eat for 2 hours before a race, or just because it’s a pretty huge sandwich? 90 minutes is my cut-off, so I was curious.

    My BIL’s girlfriend invited me to do this race with her when she bought it with a living social deal, but I was on vacation and didn’t remember to buy it in time. It sounded like a lot of fun though, but I agree it’d be better with friends and drink money.

    1. For 5Ks that start in the morning, I normally don’t eat anything beforehand, just some water and coffee. Usually I run pretty hard for 5Ks, so I don’t want anything churning in my stomach. For longer races, I’ll eat something simple (oatmeal, toast) about two or more hours before. For running in the evening (like, after work), I’ll eat my normal lunch (so, maybe 6 hours before) and then if I’m famished, I’ll eat some pretzels or a banana before I head out for my run. So, it was a combo of not my normal pre-race food, plus much closer to the race start time that I’m used to. If I had planned better, I probably would have aimed to eat the sandwich at least 3 hours before the race started.

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