Running on Saturday

Making Memories

Posted on June 22, 2015 at 11:20 PM

Mama Pat always says we are making memories and this weekend we definitely made some extra special memories. This weekend started off on Thursday night as the "D" team headed for El Paso. We had planned to leave Gustine around 6 pm, but we were a bit delayed by a broken down farm truck and a dead calf before we could head out. Oh, the joys of country life and bringing your farmer/rancher father-in-law along for his first Race Day adventure.


My mother and father-in-law quickly learned that I am easily entertained, amused, and that I like my food!! You know by now that food is a pretty important part of our Race Day trips, so we started off at Taco Casa in Abilene. I know, you're thinking..TACO CASA? But, it's one of my favorites, some of the other crew members may not agree with me, but they like Chili's (YUCK!)

I found out before we ever left Gustine that our trip was going to be very interesting. It's amazing the things you learn about each other when confined to a truck and sharing a hotel room on a 9 hour drive. Time spent together always brings out the "best" in everyone. We always learn new things about our Race Day crew, but when the crew turns into your in-laws....hmm.

After spending the night in Big Spring we headed for El Paso very early Friday morning. I was glad that we brought along all the technology to keep the in-laws entertained on the trip. We didn’t hear a peep out of them the whole way!

We always find friends wherever we go. Sometimes they wear running shoes and sometimes it's a cowboy hat, but either way it's a good time.

The "D" team arrived in El Paso Friday morning in time to help with packet pick-up for the race and get the festivities started with the Denning clan. This weekend, my father-in-law joined in on the race timing work. This was his first race to ever attend, much less work. At the end of the event on Saturday I asked Randy if I needed to add him to our full-time payroll. Without hesitation or time to think about it, he answered with a very stern and adamant "NO!"

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the other crew stayed at home to time another Friday night race, the Boots and Thongs (AKA flip flops) 5k in Comanche, where a good time was had by all . It was rodeo weekend in Comanche and they hosted the 5K on Friday night along with music on the square and shoppers' night. The 5k was sponsored by Heartland Funeral Home and their hearse led the runners along the course. Luckily, no one actually showed up in a thong, but there were plenty of flip flops to be seen on spectator feet Friday night!


Saturday started at 4:30 am when we woke up to head to the Denning Dash. Randall and I both had butterflies in our tummy as we headed to the race location. This was a big weekend for us. We had been planning this event for a year. We want every event we time to be successful, but this was the first time our entire family would get to see what we actually do every single weekend. So many people just don't get it when we say that we are race timers. They have no idea what we actually do.

The Denning Dash was put on by the Denning family in memory of Wallace Denning who passed away 11 years ago. His girls decided a year ago they wanted to start a scholarship fund in honor of their dad's love of basketball. Of course, we agreed to help, even though it was 550 miles away.

Along the way we partnered up with an El Paso timing company," target="_blank">Race Adventures. If you ever find yourself in the need of race timing help or finding a race to run in El Paso, look them up. They are good people. Mike took care of our course, medals and volunteers for the race. We couldn’t have done it without him

If you follow Race Day or me personally on Facebook, then you have already been on this journey with us. Saturday was such an exciting emotional adventure. There were so many great people who loved Wallace and miss him just as much as we do that came to show their support. Aunt Deb took home gold in her age group and Uncle Jimmy received a bronze medal for his efforts.

The best quote of the day we heard, "I sure do see a lot of Nike's around here." That’s the difference in a runner and basketball player! (If you get it, you're a runner!! LOL) But we loved seeing everyone come out and show their support for a dad who loved basketball.

After the race, the Denning clan all met up at Monica's house for an afternoon of fun, games, birthday celebrations and of course, FOOD.

The Denning girls surprised me with a birthday cake and goodies to celebrate my special day. This was the best birthday ever because I got everything I wanted all in one...time with family, timing a race, and the best part of all, a run shirt that has not only my name, but my birthday on it, too. I am truly blessed and thankful to see what the upcoming year has in store for me.

It was a busy, stressful, fun weekend for Race Day as we made memories, celebrated another year of life, mourned a death, traveled to the end of the United States, visited a new city and celebrated our Dads all while running on Saturday.`


Related links

Denning Dash Facebook Page

El Paso Times - Denning Dash: Daughters honor father and coach on Father's Day weekend

El Paso Times - Denning Dash Photo Gallery



Categories: Race Day Adventures, June

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