Wow! What a turn out, and what an amazing event!
Thank you to all the racers, to all of our wonderful volunteers, and to the staff at Camp Butler for making the weekend work so well.
In preparing the event, many hours and days of preparation were spent making sure maps were correct and accurate, and controls placed in the right place. We placed loads more water than in the past, with each location having at least 10 gallons on hand for refills, etc.
Control setting, after being designed, marked and managed by Bob Boltz, was handled by Steve Hendrix, Gary Burden, Dave Kostansek, Randy Mitchell, Steve Hughes, and Shin Shimizu, who drove up from Columbus to help set (and then later competed, but not in the area he helped set)!
On Saturday morning we got started a little after 5 AM with race preparations, setting up signs, donut & coffee pickup, preparing the check in and registration, and getting ready for runners to appear.
Expert parking assistance came from Dan Freeman and Peter Pirns who got everyone where they needed to go. Registration was handled by Holly Wilgus, Gary Burden, and Guy Russ, with assistance from Hazel Barton and Randy Mitchell when the rush came. Bob Boltz was on hand to help with maps and questions, and Sanae Rogers managed the overnight crew and lodging, with Hazel Barton providing artistic mapping for bunk assignment.
We handed out maps around 7 AM, and all the 6 and 12-hour competitors busily began planning routes for maximum scores. Special instructions were at 7:45, and after an event photo, the air horn went off at 8 AM for a mass start.
A silence erupted… but not for long! Many 3-hour competitors arrived shortly after 9 AM, checked in, and took off. We began preparing for lunch, the 3-hour folks’ arrival back, and the morning was over before we knew it.
Smiles abounded as the first runners came back, having tested the waters so to speak, in and around Camp Butler and Camp Manatoc. Many had tales of brush and other persistent vegetation that had somehow attached to clothing, shoes, hair, and elsewhere.
Around 1 PM, our resident camp chef extraordinaire John Nazier began cooking hamburgers with all the fixin’s for the arrival of the 6-hour group that began arriving shortly after 1:30 PM. Scores were tallied, bellies were filled, and prizes handed out. Everyone earned a Python Medal, and some scored a second award as top of class.
Fred Mailey made sure our e-punch gear worked, and crunched data (both electronically and manually) to make sure scores were tallied, correctly. Working a new system had its kinks, but we were able to get the stuff we needed, and solved a few issues throughout. We determined then and there to eliminate any manual punching from future events, and stick strictly to e-punch.
The afternoon was not as long as we thought, but some of us managed spending a few minutes in a hammock, waiting patiently for the 12-hour group to begin showing up. A few straggled in early after the course had taken its toll.
Around 7:30 PM we repeated the lunch rush, with more food, prizes and such. We had improved our workflow by then, and employed the talents of Howard Montgomery and Ivan Redinger for people management and score checking. Most of us, and all the runners, had donned headlamps by then, and we had to endure the loud steamboat sound of a Halloween Hay Ride stationed right outside our venue. We will improve for next time, and locate ourselves someplace else… we promise!
By 8:30 PM most were headed home, some stayed the night, and the rest of the NEOOC team cleaned up, swept, put things in order, and left the site around 10 PM. Exciting, but made for a long day!
Control pickup began that night, with Bob Boltz leading the pickup crew, having assigned controls and areas to police. He recovered the Big Fish, as well as the corn maze controls that night.
On Sunday, and following days, Randy Mitchell, Andreas Johansson (with the help of Jae Russ, Emelie and Oskar), Gary Burden, Ivan Redinger, Steve Hendrix, Sanae Rogers, Howard Montgomery, Dan Freeman, KJ Ruefner, Jamie Price, and Dave Kostansek helped pickup the remaining controls and recover the water stops. Way to go!
Thank you to everyone who made the event what it was. We couldn’t do it without you, and look forward to another great Python on 2018.
All results are in PDF form. Some of the data is quite complex, so take some time to look at the format, and check the column headers as well. Please remember that we had e-punch + manual punching for the 6 and 12-hour competitors.