Looking For a Race

Recently, I learned that the Toronto Underwear Affair isn’t going to happen in 2011. That’s a bit of a drag. It’s the only fundraising race I do each year, and it’s a lot of fun. So I’m now looking for something to replace it.

What I want is another fundraiser, a race that happens in warm (or, better yet, hot) weather, and one that I can easily drop into my busy race calendar. I may have found just the event.

The Pearson Runway Run is a 5K run that takes place on one of the principal runways of Toronto’s international airport. It takes place on a Sunday morning in mid-June, and it’s a fundraiser for the emergency ward of a local hospital.

It sounds like a bit of a skit.

Race participants can watch take-offs and landings on the adjacent runway (while they’re racing!). They can walk through a FedEx plane, see a real race car up close, and meet the airport’s bird man and his falcon. The video on the event site shows a lot of folks running pretty slowly, but the winner this year finished in 18:22, so I imagine there are some pretty competitive runners there too.

Hey, it’s for a good cause. It’s a perfectly flat, dead straight course, on airport-quality tarmac – and so perfect for a barefoot run. And the race medal features a great big honking airplane. I think I’m in.



  1. Have you considered Twenty Valley Half Marathon? It’s usually on the same week-end with the Pearson 5km, but the course is much nicer, in the wine country, amidst rolling hills. You don’t have to taste the wine if you don’t want to! I’ve been doing this for the last two years and I enjoyed it very much every time.

    1. That’s certainly an interesting thought, and a tempting one. I’m doing the Kingston 6 Hour race on June 4, though, and I may not be up to a half marathon only two weeks later. On the other hand, in for a penny, in for a pound, so…

      Thanks for the idea, Lia!

  2. If you come to Portland, make sure it’s late July or August, since you like the heat. Those are our hottest months.


  3. LOL! Great point! But if I came that far, I’d expect to go out to dinner with you and your wife. 🙂

    Maybe someday my family and I can take a vacation in Toronto.


  4. Ha! A vey long ways. I live in Portland, Oregon, on the West Coast of the United States. According to Mapquest, 2643.29 miles.


  5. Alan:

    I’m sad to hear about the Underwear Affair because I know that’s special to you because of your issues with cancer below the waist. Sorry about that, my friend.

    However, on the upside, it really sounds like Pearson Runway Run will be a lot of fun! I wish I didn’t live so far away; I’d love to do it!


    1. Yes, I want to find another prostate cancer fundraiser. There are a couple, but they’re very early and late season races. I’d like a mid-summer race. Maybe I can make something work that way around the Runway Run.

      How far away from Toronto do you live, Todd?

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