In April, the first Run CRANDIC race will be held, culminating a decade’s worth of work by Angie Maske-Berka and other coordinators.
The race came from a simple idea, she says, run from Cedar Rapids to Iowa City. And that’s how the name was born, from the cities’ initials — CR and IC, or CRANDIC.
A simple idea, maybe. But a logistical challenge, for sure. The planning and coordination has taken somewhere between 10 and 15 years to get to this point, she says. After all, all the various county sheriffs, city police, city councils, county supervisors and the University of Iowa all had to give their approvals.
“The biggest hurdle is the route itself,” Maske-Berka says, noting the race course goes through two counties and three larger cities. “While the main route between Cedar Rapids and Iowa City is an interstate, the other direct route is a busy highway The full marathon will be on part of Highway 965 and runners will have to use the shoulder of that road. Safety of participants is the first concern.”
Organizers created the race for runners of all types and strides.
“I see a group of front runners, but there is a huge group of first timers,” Maske-Berka predicts.
“This part of the state lacks in longer distance races, sure you can run multiple 5Ks every weekend, but there is no road marathon in the area. Lot of chatter in training groups, people are excited! People are training the course, running through winter — it's cool to see people being active.”
The race will go off Sunday, April 29. The marathon starts at 6:30 a.m., followed by the half at 8:15 a.m. and the 5K at 9:30 a.m. All three races will finish at Kinnick Stadium, 825 Evashevski Drive in Iowa City.
To register for any of the events, click here. When you sign up, use code "BibRave18" for 10 percent off.
The race website has lots of good information about packet pickup, transportation and more.
For Maske-Berka, she’s excited that all the years of blood, sweat and paperwork are paying off. She has no regrets at all. In fact, she would encourage others to start races in their communities.
“Make it happen!” she encourages. “While the concept is easy, it will take a lot of work, so don't be afraid to get dirty and ask for help.”
How would she define success on race day?
“Crossing the finish line with a smile!”