Races · Singapore

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

by On Nov 16, 2016

If you are lazy, hate to exercise, and prefer to eat and sleep like Garfield, you should join him at Garfield Run. After all, it’s just once in a year run, and you get to meet your good friend, Garfield.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

Garfield Run 2016 is held at The Promontory @ Marina Bay on Sunday, 12 November 2017. There are 3 types of distance to choose from, 1 KM, 3 KM and 5 KM. The flag offs for all three categories are staggered, at 5pm, 5.30pm and 6.45pm respectively, so congestion is minimized. This year, Garfield Run helps fundraising for Cats Welfare Society to support its mission of saving cats’ lives.

Garfield Run is a great opportunity for parents to bond with their children, for friends to catch up with each other, and for couples to spend quality time with one another. Here is my experience participating in Garfield Run 2016.

Before the Race

I stared out of the window from my living room, it was drizzling outside. I reminded my running buddy to protect her phone with a plastic bag in case the rain persists and we have to run under the rain throughout the race. We then left the house and made our way to The Promontory @ Marina Bay by taking MRT to Raffles Place.

On the way to the race, I checked Facebook page of Garfield Run to find information whether the race will go on or be cancelled due to rain, but the organiser didn’t post a single thing on that day. I checked Instagram with #garfieldrun hashtag and found photos of happy faces with bright blue sky. I felt a huge relief.

My running buddy is my housemate. One and a half month earlier, we had registered for 5 KM Garfield & Odie Buddies Run. A week earlier, we collected our race packs at Velocity @ Novena. During the collection, we received a surprise item: the Garfield cushion.

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This mystery gift was a compensation from the Organiser because they were unable to give out Arlene plushies as part of the finisher entitlements to runners. It’s really a nice gesture from the organiser.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

As we arrived at The Promontory, the sun was making its way down to the horizon, and clouds were scattered around in the sky. The wind blew gently accompanying the mellow music from loudspeakers as if they were part of the same orchestra. Kids were jumping around and playing on an inflated balloon playground.

We snapped as many photographs as we could before the sun set. My running buddy reminded me that we were running out of time. We made it to the starting line just one minute before the scheduled flag off, phew.

During the Race

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

The horn was blown a couple of times to mark the flag off. Upbeat songs filled the air. The MC said that participants must cross the finish line holding hands with their buddies. I asked my running buddy, “Hah? Really?” She answered, “No need.”

Garfield and Odie characters sent us off at the start line while posing for photos with some families. We started the race by running along the promenade, towards Marina Bay Sands. Even though it was only the second week of November, Christmas trees have already been put up along the river. And there was a giant Christmas tree in The Shoppes At Marina Bay Sands. It already felt like Christmas in Singapore.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

The route continues along the promenade, passing through the many outdoor cafes at The Shoppes at MBS, Art Science Museum, and the underside of Helix Bridge, before making a right turn to Garden by The Bay.

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Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

Just before I turned to the garden, I saw some Garfield participants running from the opposite direction and passing me, they must have been the top runners or probably the winners. I kept on running and tried to keep the pressure to run fast away.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

I gulped a glass of water from the first water station and continued running in the garden, passing through the two iconic conservatories, Flower Dome and Cloud Forest. The breeze continued to accompany me throughout the race. The race route was designed to be along Marina Reservoir throughout its entire length.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

I passed by Satay by The Bay and eventually arrived at Marina Barrage, the U-Turn point, and also the second water station. I gulped another glass of water.

The route for the second half of the race was exactly the same as the first half of it. The only exception was the sky. By that time, the sky has turned dark, the day has turned into night. In my second half of the race, all the buildings and street decorations have lit up.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

Eventually, I crossed the finish line, but without holding hands with my buddy because that would be awkward.

After the Race

I met my buddy right after the finish line. Together, we collected our medals, Garfield plushies, and cold Dasani mineral waters. Suddenly our hands became too full. We realized we should have worn our drawstring bags to keep these finisher’s entitlements.

Garfield Run 2016 Race Review – Celebrate Time with Friends and Family through Running

The prize presentation ceremony was going on at the stage when we reached The Promontory. We snapped a couple of photographs with our race medals before leaving the race village.

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The Garfield in us, who has been tired and hungry from exercise, yearned to sit down and have a big meal. Fortunately, Lau Pa Sat is just a 350m walk from The Promontory.

Did you take part in the Garfield Run 2016? Share with us your race experience in the comments below.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of RunSociety.

Aidan is the Editor-in-chief of RunSociety. As a health improvement hacker and explorer, he oversees RunSociety’s Creativity Channel, spanning a wide range of inspirational and enriching topics daily to the running community. Get in touch with him if you have any fresh ideas!

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