As a counterpoint to the lengthy calendar sections of the local media outlets, we here at the ‘Rag will not inundate you with events and happenings and cultural brouhahas that may not appeal to you.Â We will, however, tell you what we, the writers of the Sac Rag, plan to do this weekend.Â Please keep in mind that not only are we independently wealthy, but also attractive and tied in to the local scene tighter than a fat chick’s Wranglers.Â So, here’s what we’re doing this weekend.Â We don’t want to tell you what to do, but be aware, if you choose to join us in any of these outings, you will be a better person for it.
This is set to be a pretty busy weekend for me:
FRIDAY- Improv at the Sacramento Comedy Spot:Â I’ll be performing and watching two improv shows at the Sac Comedy Spot on 18th and Broadway.Â Admission is only $6.Â Shows are at 8pm & 9:30pm.
SATURDAY-I’m still debating on whether or not to attend the Grape Escape, a gathering of wineries and restaurateurs from the surrounding area.Â It is usually a pretty fun event, but the move to Raley Field and the addition of Michael McDonald to the mix is making me leery of the event.Â Also, the $47.50 price tag seems a little steep.Â I may just go to Roxy for dinner and check out Baby Grand at Old I.
SUNDAY- Going to check out the new Quarry Pond Marketplace up in Granite Bay when attending a great wine event put on by Slow Food Sacramento.Â This is going to be what the Grape Escape should be, relaxed, informative, genre expanding and amongst friends.Â I highly suggest that you check it out.
Had I not come down with the nasty bout of gastroenteritis that’s being passed around the region, I’d be running “sweep” for a 20 mile sectionÂ of this weekend’s Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run.Â That means my running buddy and I would be the last people to leave a designated point, and we’d keep track of all runners until the next designated point, plus take care of any first aid issues that cropped up between aid stations.
After qualifying for it in ’05, being selected for it for ’06, and doing all my training, I was one of the 47.8% of the 399 starters of last year’s race who dropped during the race due to the 110 or so degree weather — it was even hotter in the canyons.Â There had been no hot weekends at all prior to race week; in fact, we trained while it was snowing over Memorial Day weekend.Â
With cooler temps for this year’s race, it should be a strong field of finishers.Â You might think “I could WALK 100 miles in 24/30 hours!” Not on this course you can’t — please try for yourself!Â Qualification standards were made easier beginning for this year’s run, so just get a 50 miler under your belt and enter the lottery.Â It is truly a life-changing experience.
Even if you’re not a runner, it’s amazing to see these “regular” people make this journey.Â You have no idea how much it helps to have a friendly face along the way say to you, “Way to go!”Â (I swear it was the “Looking fresh!” from Dean Karnazes that got me through the last 30 miles of the Miwok 100K last year.)
Good vantage points for Western States are:
Michigan Bluff, mile 55.7
Lead runner ETA: 1:30-2pm
24 hour runner ETA: 5:30pm
30 hour runner ETA: 8:30pm
A good time to visit this checkpoint would be between about 4pm-6pm, as that’s when you’d see the most runners.Â Parking is limited in this area, so there might be some walking involved.Â Bring a chair and snacks.Â This is a cool vantage point because runners will have just emerged from tackling some of the toughest climbs on the course.
Foresthill Elementary School, 62 mile mark
Lead runner ETA: 2:30pm
24 hour runner ETA: 7:30pm
30 hour runner ETA: 10:30pm
Plentiful parking at this location — this is a great place to catch the lead runners.Â Bring a chair and snacks — a good place to pick up grub is Worton’s Market on Foresthill Road before the school.
Placer High School, finish line
Lead runner ETA: 8:30pm
24 hour runner ETA: 5am Sunday
30 hour runner ETA: 11am Sunday
Seeing the Sunday morning finishers is awe-inspiring.Â These people have seen the sun rise twice, and they’ve been moving forward the entire time.Â Show them some love.
Maps and driving directions can all be found at www.ws100.com, and check out today’s Sports section of the Bee for info.
I’m hopeful that my running club friend Erik Skaden wins this year — he’s a top finisher each year, and I’d love for him to take it all.Â