Milford and Miami Township, Ohio - Consensus last Saturday was that it would be awfully hard to wrestle the Amazing Race back across the border to Loveland. Contestants had that much fun, and enthusiastically praised event organizers, Milford and Miami Township officials, and volunteers, especially the boy scouts.
After seven years in Loveland, and because last year's race was almost cancelled in the last week after meddling by Loveland City Manager Thomas Carroll - a dispute that in the end could not be resolved by city council, the charity event changed its name and moved to friendlier pastures. What was the Loveland Amazing Race became Loveland's Amazing Race Milford-Miami Township Tour.
Nearly $400,000.00 has been raised to benefit local charities since its founding. This year's beneficiaries are, Karen Carns foundation, Milford Miami Township Sharefest project, Chestnut Street Historic Church Preservation project, and the Boy Scouts of America Camp Friedlander. Many other charities benefit by hosting one of the challenge stations or providing volunteers at water stations.
Time and time again when the announcer at the finish line asked the weary, wobbly finishers, "What was your favorite part of the race?"
The muddy, wet shouted with what breath they had, "The finish line."
Further prodding... "What was the best part of the course?"
"What was your favorite challenge at Camp Friedlander?"
"Archery, the bows and arrows. Blindfolded archery."
Many said the human car wash at the end was a very fun. It was just a few feet from the finish line - getting hosed off, lathered by volunteers, hosed off, and blow dried by large fire department fans.
"What was the hardest thing about the race?
"Switch Back Mountain at the boy scout camp." Biking, well impossible to bike straight up. Carry the bike back and forth straight up a mountain trail.
The race had stops where racers were directed to solve either physical or mental challenges. Once completed, they raced to the next, either on foot or on bicycle. The challenge of the Little Miami River in tubes was cancelled because of swift current, however there was canoeing at a pond in Camp Friedlander.
The hardest mental challenge? Probably reciting the 12 boy scout laws from memory ....before being allowed to move on, some said.
Corporate and two person teams started at 9 AM and three or four teams left at one minute intervals.
A post race party with food and live music was held along the river at the American Legion Post's picnic grounds.
Milford City Manager, Jeff Write said this week, “From all accounts I have heard, the Amazing Charity Race was a success. Since there was so much planning and coordination among the safety services departments of Miami Township and Milford and the event organizers, it was a very safe event.” Write was the assistant city manager in Loveland during many of the races held there. He added, “It also benefited the Milford merchants with exposure to a new crowd and all of the participants enjoyed themselves. We look forward to next year's event for the benefit of our businesses and local charities.”
Milford councilwoman Charlene Hinners said, "People in the neighborhoods enjoyed it too, and I'm so glad everything went so well, weather and all."
Race board member and one of the founders of the event, Martin Schickel said, "It was another great event. It really bring out the best in people." He heard one story of a guy cutting his grass as the racers went by and loaning out his bike to a team that had a breakdown. "The joy on the faces at the finish line is just great stuff," Schickel said.
The team, “Last year in PC” of Alan and Tyler Hernandez were first place overall winners and also won the Parent/Child competition with a time of 1:34. The last of 539 teams finished with a time of 5:49. The corporate team of Hillsboro Eyeland finished in first place with a time of 1:37.
The “Dangerous Divas” duo of Vanessa Malone and Katie Phlan won the Female/Female division with a time of 1:47. Male/Female division winners with a time of 1:42 were Michael and Kelly Rimler. The team “We run for beer” of Dan Burnett and Tim Smallidge won the Male/Male division with a finish time of 1:38.
Larry Fronk, the Miami Township administrator said, "The race was a huge success for Miami Township. It was a great opportunity to showcase our community. All the pre-planning paid off and I greatly appreciate the amazing cooperation between the race organizers, the City of Milford and Miami Township."
Hinners, Fronk, and Wright all said they are looking forward to next year.
Registration for the 2014 race, with "Loveland" even removed from the name, now called "Amazing Charity Race 9" was opened at noon last Sunday. At 1:06 PM there were only 58 spots left. Registration is now closed, but you can sign up for the waiting list HERE.
Here are some more photos taken at the finish line.