It’s Tuesday and of course that means it’s Tuesdays on the Run! Today we want to know how you handle expo purchases. Are you strategic about when you arrive to avoid the crowds (or maybe to get first pick of a cool race branded item)? Do you just go when you have a chance and get in and out? Are you there to spend money or not interested in the items? Or are you one of those who has had their butt saved by an expo when something got left at home or lost by the airlines or the weather changed? Patty, Marcia, and I want to know!
I live in the land of the big expo. Rock ‘n’ Roll DC, Army 10 Miler, and the Marine Corps Marathon all have lots of vendors and lots to look at. It’s been a while since I’ve been to ATM, but both RNR and MCM have huge sections of cool branded stuff from Brooks. (And if you spend enough money you get to use the VIP bathroom on race day!) I don’t usually buy anything special from races, but I could not resist buying myself a jacket this year at MCM, mostly because I never bought myself anything the first time I ran and I really wish I had.
I’ve got kind of a split personality when it comes to expos though. It totally depends on my mood and how long the lines are. Some times, I’m in, I’m out, I don’t stop at a single vendor. Sometimes I buy so much stuff that it’s hard to carry it all home. At RNR one year, I bought a pair of Altras, a pair of new sunglasses, a hat, and one of my favorite running shirts.
But you know what my favorite part of these big expos is? When I get the opportunity to volunteer. I LOVE meeting all the runners and hearing their stories. I got to volunteer for ZOOMA one year at RNR DC and for Brooks another year, also at RNR DC. (And if you are an official volunteer, many vendors will give you a discount on your purchases.)
But I’m not one to NEED a big expo or really even care if there’s an expo. They can be fun, but it’s definitely not something I look at when considering races. And I’ve only ever bought Gu as a “crap, I forgot…” item at an expo – and never actually used it. (I’ve also never gotten my picture taken at an expo with the cool backdrops, except at ZOOMA where I was hanging out with the other ambassadors.)
How about you? Tell me your expo purchase habits!
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35 thoughts on “Are you an Expo Junkie?”
I have been to the Rock n Roll DC expo a few times and it can be a bit overwhelming but its a good one! I usually move through expos pretty quickly especially if its crowded, but once in a while I find some good stuff to by.
I like to see what new products are there and stop by my old favorites to see if I know anyone working it. (And maybe buy a thing or two.)
I love a good expo, but not many races I go to have a good expo.. maybe the best one I have been to is either the Missoula Marathon or a Ragnar Relay..; nothing like those big ones!
Yeah, DC has the big races, so big expos. Most races I do outside of DC are not in big cities, so the expos are a lot smaller.
I tend to spend way too much at the big expos! Good thing I don’t run a lot of big races!
I was impressed at how little I spent at MCM LOL.
I have the Caveman wait in the huge Brooks line while I shop for the official race stuff. It’s such a circus. I’ve never waited in line for the fun pics either. That’s a great jacket!
I had my dad do the same thing, but then saw some MRTT friends and got them to buy it for me.
Lately I’ve been doing smaller halfs with no expos. I do love a good expo!
I’ve never done the backdrop photo thing yet either . . . at least not yet.
I usually prefer the smaller for lots of reasons, but sometimes a good expo is just what you need.
I have gotten alot better at expos. When I first attended them I wanted everything! Now I usually get a little something, especially if I know I never will run that race again.
I very seldom buy anything specific to the race anymore. I just don’t have room for things. But every once in a while I love a shirt or a hat or something that’s branded with the race and I’ll get that.
I feel the same as you about expos – I don’t need to go to one but generally enjoy them while I’m there. I don’t really buy a lot of stuff anymore and the crowds really get me anxious. I do like the RnR expos for some reason. I usually always go to them and stay for a while checking things out.
If I’m not in a rush, I enjoy them. If I need to get in and out, they can stress me out.
Vonunteering would be really exciting ! Race expos here in France are still not that great, only the Paris Marathon one is significant in size. And I love it !
It was so much fun. I love being part of things like that.
I must be the only person who doesn’t like expos…..what is wrong with me!! HAHA!!
Ha! They can be overwhelming and annoying (or the other runners can LOL)
I don’t chose races based on expos either. In fact, I was quite surprised at how small the Eugene expo was. It’s a town known for running, with Pre and the U of Oregon, but the expo was quite small.
Yeah, except for the really big races here, I never know what to expect in an expo.
You have awesome expos near you! I only attend one big expo per year, if that. And I normally don’t buy anything!
Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. Depends on my mood and what I find LOL.
I am usually in and out – here to pick up my bib and that’s it! Although at the Grandma’s Marathon Expo this year, they had a Lululemon table with tons of clothing to buy. Since I normally have to buy online, I was so excited to see stuff in person! Plus, I had a glass of wine at dinner before hand, so that helped loosen up my pocketbook :o) My husband wasn’t so happy about that, but oh well!
Ha! I was like that the first time I saw a Skirt Sports expo.
I’ve only been to one race with an expo, but I loved it. I saved up to get a shirt and to pick up some other items if my heart desired. I can’t wait to go to more expos, as I love the big races. I would love to volunteer at a booth or two!
Most of the races I do don’t have big ones, but if I ever want one, there are some really big ones around here worth visiting even if you aren’t running the race.
I didn’t realize VIP bathrooms could be a perk for purchases. 🙂 That could definitely be a good motivator!
They are certainly useful. They get busy, but if you go on the early side before the lines, they are awesome.
I have to say most of the race i have been in do not have an expo. I am hoping to participate in some in the near future. Thanks for the link up
I SO SO SO LOVE THE EXPOS.
and while I should be embarrassed Im not that THOSE are what I miss the most from my bodybuilding days 🙂
Oh wow I do love expos they are as much fun as the race itself! How cool would it be to work at one like you did! I could so do that! Maybe one day I’ll have an opportunity! Until then I’m sticking to walking the isles and looking at EVERYTHING!!! Thanks for the Link up!
It’s a lot of run. You meet a ton of interesting people.
I usually don’t have the patience to wander the expo too long. I like to be off my feet before a big race. However, I do enjoy sampling the different food items. There were these awesome fruit bars at the Ironman Mont Tremblant expo and I’m wishing I had purchased more because I can’t get them in the US.
Mmm, those sound interesting. I’d like to say I stay off of my feet before races, but really I don’t LOL. Beer Geek does things like make me go hiking during my multi race series.