Monday, December 5, 2011

Registration is now open for 2012

Registration is now open for the 2012 Potato Creek Trail runs.

Please DO NOT call the park. The office staff is undermanned the way it is, and they do no appreciate all the phone calls regarding the race. If you have questions please email me at
If You must speak with someone feel free to call me at 574-596-3860. Your calls are not sent to a call center in India, but are answered by me.

Changes for 2012-
There will be no race day registration for the Ultra or Marathon runners. The course will change very little. We will be running the hiking trail loop first this year. It is much wider than the mountain bike trail which will allow for passing and a chance for people to sort out their pace for the first 6.1 miles. The A/S that was on the old section of Orange road will be moved closer to the cemetery. This will provide two advantages over last year. 1) There are vault toilets out on the back of the course that can be used if needed. 2) This A/S will have road access; making it easier to stock and maintain, as well as allowing easy access for support crew and family on the back side of the course.
The course will be marked much heavier than last year. It is my hope that no one will get lost or confused while out on the course.

If questions arise, or if I can help any of you call or email me!

Thank You!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Registration Scheduled! Opening Soon!

Last week I got the permit back from the state, and it looks like we are set to go on April 28th at 8:00 AM. I have been emailing back and forth with Todd from T&H timing to get the online registration set up a.s.a.p..
Please check back soon as I hope to have everything set up this weekend!

As always you guys can reach me at any of these email addresses.

Monday, October 3, 2011


Hello everyone. Fall is finally here and it is now time to get back on the RD horse and give you guys an update. After we paid all of our expenses this past spring (shirts, medals, food etc) we were able to donate $2,000 towards the scholarship fund. This is amazing to me. Around two weeks before the race I wasn’t sure that we would break even. What put us over the top were the 14 people that showed up on race day and signed up. This was a real blessing for sure.

I filled out the paperwork for the race permit, and turned in all the appropriate insurance info last month. I am expecting to get all the paperwork back any day now. TENATIVE DATE: APRIL 28TH, 2012 8:00 AM.

The course will be very similar to last year. It will have a few minor tweaks in order to make it less confusing, and have better flow. One change that was suggested was to run the hiking trails first due to them being much wider and easier to pass for the first 6.1 miles. Second, I will be moving the one aid station from the old orange road (the middle of nowhere) to closer to the cemetery where the A/S will have road access and the availability of bathrooms on the back loop of the course. Over the next few weeks I am intending to get out there with GPS to map it out exactly.

Check back here often as the race picks up new sponsors and I continue to post up more pictures. We will also be adding a FB page in the near future.

Good luck to all the runners at the Chicago marathon this coming weekend!

As always, you guys can reach me at any of these email addresses if you have questions, suggestions or want to gripe about something race related.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Photo's are here!

There is a quite a few. So have a looky at them; and remember you probably felt worse than what you actually looked. Copy and paste this address into a new window; For whatever reason my new laptop is not allowing me to use a link.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Photo's coming soon!

I've been trying to contact the people who were there taking pictures. I think they are posted on photo bucket or something similar. I was told that one of them took 1600 pictures at the race. I will get you a link on the blog asap.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Results for 2011 and the "guess the gap" contest winner.

Thank you everyone for a great first year. Here is the link to T&H timing web page results T&H Timing

Looks like we had some superfast times!

The winner of the TIMEX IRONMAN Global trainer is...

DOUG MORRIS.(4:48.48) Please everyone check my math. The fist overall 1/2 runner was 99:20 and the first overall ultra runner was 392:32. By my estimation that is 4.88 and per the conversion it comes to 4:52:47. This is bad news for Eric Schumacher of Columbus Ohio who guessed 4:53. The second closest is Rachel Kaser with 4:44.44( first female in the half ). Doug please email me so I can set up a time to get you the GPS watch.
OK...I just got off the phone with a fellow runner explaining where I went wrong with the math. In fact, Eric Schumacher is the winner. Apologies to Doug. I will be sending out a email to correct this. Thank you Larry for your timly phone call.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

This years Potato Creek is in the books.

I'd love to sit here with a smug grin on my face saying we nailed it this weekend; but, I know there are many areas where we can improve. Please keep the emails coming with suggestions complaints, or compliments. Next years race will have more GPS info like mileage listed throughout the trail system, and mileage listed at each aid station. I was out this morning taking down the course markings and realized there was a two mile stretch with no pink blazes at all. I think on a conservative estimate, we lost somewhere between 20-25% of the course markings.
I had no idea what could have happened to the pink blazes until I found these two walking sticks.
Each of these sticks ( for mushroom hunting? ) had around 10-20 pink blazes on them.
Next year, I will use the old standby method; accuracy by volume. I also intend to put out less complicated signs...things like arrows seem to work better.
If you got lost, or were instructed to run in the wrong direction PLEASE EMAIL ME!!! I am very sorry your day was ruined. Speaking from experience it is no fun being lost.

I am working on getting our results posted online. It's a bit complicated as the contractor for the event used a sub-contractor from different part of the state. I have emails into both of them.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Prizes, give aways, and bragging rights

OK folks lets talk about prizes for a moment. As you have seen in the previous post Metro Run and Walk has donated a TIMEX Global Trainer. This will be given to the person who can correctly estimate the amount of time elapsed from the first over all finisher of the half marathon to the first overall ULTRA finisher without going over. NEED NOT BE PRESENT TO WIN. Its a free contest to every runner; so make sure you get in on your chance to win.

Trophies: Here is the deal, you finish first in your distance you get a little running guy trophy.

Comp'd entries and discounts:
1st- free entry next year at any distance
2nd- half price entry next year at any distance
3rd- $20 off entry next year for any distance

For the half marathon, there will be male and female comp'd entries and discounts. Marathon and Ultra ladies I am sorry but there isn't enough of you to make this possible. It is because of this we will just have to do 1st, 2nd, 3rd. for those distances.
As the race continues to grow each year hopefully we can branch out and do male/female and age brackets. Right now, we just don't have the numbers to accommodate everyone.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Registration deadlines.

Ok Guys. The deadline for ONLINE registration will be NOON this coming Wednesday( April 27th), and mail in registration will be Tuesday ( April 26) at 5PM. If I do not recieve it in the mail by end of the day Tuesday you can still run it; but your finishers award will NOT have your name engraved onto it. Reminder, you can sign up the morning of the race but you will recieve a nameless finishers medal. NO ULTRA race day sign up.

Here is a race day prize that Metro Run and Walk has donated. (574-257-7867)
Its is a Timex IRONMAN Global Trainer. Its is a GPS enabled, heart rate monitor wrist watch. Also included is access to online software,USB cable, AC adaptor, handlebar bike mount and a quick start guide. This is a bad little monkey valued at $360.00.
You can sign up to win it by guessing your finishing time. The closest finishing time with out going over will win. There will be clip board at the start finish area where you will have to write out your time prediction.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Race Day info: Please take note!

The Park will be open from 7 AM to 11 PM.

Camping is available; please make reservations online or call ahead.

If you do not have a state park pass it will cost you $5.00 to get into the park.

Packet pick up will be available on Friday from 4-7 PM at Orchard Shores Picnic area.

Race day registration and packet pick up will take place from 7 AM to 7:30 AM.

No race day registration for the ultra event.

No whining.

The ultra runners will have a drop bag area near the Nature Center; bags can be dropped at the start finish and will be taken by race staff to the drop bag area.

The race starts at 8:00 AM EST whether you are ready or not.

Aid stations will be spaced from 3.8 miles to 2.8 miles apart.

Dress appropriately; normally that means multiple layers. Its spring in the upper Midwest expect anything.

The course will remain open until all Ultra runners have finished, dropped or it is 6 PM. Which ever comes first. There will be course cutoffs posted.

Times that the Aid Station will be open and closed will be clearly posted at each station ( for ultra runners only).

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

60k ultra awards

OK so here is a picture of the Ultra awards. These compasses are solid brass and the back will be engraved with date, distance and name similar to that of the half and full marathon runners. They will have a orange lanyard as well.

You VS Them

As the last few days before the run fly by I thought I'd post my favorite youtube clip here. I hope you all like it.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Thank you!

A big thank you to everyone that showed up to run in the rain this past Saturday. Despite the light drizzle and cooler temps it was a great day to be out trail running and meeting new people. I made mention on Saturday that I have finally found a bag piper to come out and play at the start of the race! So that is good news. I have sent off the first installment of the race spreadsheet to Hoosier Trophies so that the awards can be engraved with your names. I hope to get 90 % engraved before the race. Those signing up for the race later than noon on the 27th will receive a nameless award; with the opportunity to take the medal into Lou at Hoosier after the event should they choose to do so.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Shirts are in...

Ok so here is the back of the shirts. I hope you guys like Orange. I figure with this bright color you guys will be easy to spot from the air by search and rescue. :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Shirts are IN!

I just got a email from Dave at Metro Run and Walk (574-257-7867 for all your running needs! ) to let me know that the shirts are in and that they look awesome. Truth is I'd be happy if they looked terrible, people would remember them then. Just kidding. I hope you guys like orange, because that is the color we went with. I'll swing by Metro and post up a picture of the shirts as soon as possible. Also, I'll put up a picture of the ULTRA awards. I have them sitting on my kitchen counter, so I figure I should get them on the web. REMINDER: We are having a training run this coming Saturday at Noon. We will be starting at the Orchard Shores Picnic area and running approx. 6.7 miles of single track mountain bike trail. This will be a excellent way for you to see 1/2 of the course and eliminate any surprises on race day. Call or email if you have questions Senator Brett 574-596-3860

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Looking for a bag piper

Yep, ladies and gentlemen I am in need of a bag piper. I want to have a bag piper play at the start of the race and all my leads have gotten me nowhere. Please give me a call with any possible leads. 596-3860. Thank You!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Next weekend ( Saturday April 16th) we will have another training run out at the park. We will meet at the Orchard Shores Picnic area at noon and run the mountain bike course in reverse in similar fashion to that of race day. This 6.7 mile loop will give you insight into what to expect come race day. If you have questions about the race, or this training date please give me call on my cell phone 574-596-3860 or email here at the race's email address. If you can not be with out water for 1 hour please arrange to bring some with you. A small hand held will be fine. For those of you who have friends that are on the fence about this race; this would be a excellent opportunity for them to come out and run the front half of the course with you and a fun group of people. All done in a low- pressure type environment. Also, I would like to start a pool with a $1.00 buy in on guessing what color tights Bill K will be wearing on race day. 8-)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Where to stay?

I just had a interesting phone call asking me where to stay when coming out for the race. I realized that this needs to be addressed ASAP. So here is what I found; rated by what is the closest to the park, and not by price. If you are not down with the whole camping thing here are some places you can stay. Comfort Suites South 60971 US 31 South South Bend, IN 46614 (574) 291-3100‎ This hotel is 10-15 minutes north of the park. Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Plymouth 2619 N. Michigan Road Plymouth, IN 46563 (574) 936-2444 This hotel is around the 15-20 minute south from the entrance the park. As of right now, my race is so small and new that I have not worked out any sort of deal with the local hotels. I am sure you guys can find something on PRICELINE or HOTWIRE if you dig into it. Also, it should be noted that there are quite a few B&B's in the area if one wants to go that route. Please note that due to the time of year runners will not have to fight tooth and nail to get a good room. This would not be the case if it were a fall race and ND football season. As always, if you guys have questions I will be happy to help as much as I can. You can reach me here on my cell: 574-596-3860 of by email thru the race Also I am trying to post up info on FB as well at Potato Creek Trail Runs.

New flyer

A friend of mine just came up with this new flyer! Thanks Chello!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I'm the map,I'm the map, I'm the map I'm the map...I'M THE MAP!!!!

OK guys, here is my awesome fix to my GPS debacle. The start finish area is Orchard Shores. Runners will head east then north behind the playground on the #1 trail where they will pick up the mountain bike trail and run it in reverse. The first aid station will be 3.8 miles into the mountain bike trail; near the entrance to the property mangers house. After exiting the mountain bike trail near where you entered you will run to the second aid station near the nature center. This is also where Ultra Runners will have access to their drop bags. The runners will then head east then north on the #1 trail until they pick up the #2 trail and run up Vargo hill. The runners will be able to run the #2 trail until it gets back to Orange road. After running south on Orange road for 400M the third aid station will be located on the bridge between the #4 and the #2 trail. The runners will then run the #4 trail in a loop around the cemetary and along the south side of lake and back to this aid station. After running north on the old section of Orange RD the runners will pick up the #2 trail and run it west to where they will pick up the #1 trail and return to orchard shores picnic area. Marathoners will do this twice, and Ultra runners will do this three times.

Monday, March 28, 2011

A word about our sponsors....

Metro Run and Walk:  Metro is the premier running sports shop in the area.  The only other shops that can compete with Dave's prices, knowledge and service are located 2.5 hours away down in Indy.   If you are just starting out, or consider yourself a veteran, Metro has what you need, with the knowledge pool  to get you on the right track.   Dave has the new line of the New Balance  minimus shoes  in stock so stop by and check em out.

Cross Fit South Bend:  Cross Fit South Bend is much more that just a place to cross train.  Some of you may already know, I  am a huge fan of the CF methodology.  CF has helped me run and finish two 50 mile races, a 60k  and a few 50k's.   Those of you who chronically plagued with IT syndrome, PF, or shin splints need to realize that becoming stronger will move your running years ahead of any mileage plan alone.  Stop in, or give Brandon a call to set up a free work out.

Cross Fit Endurance: Is the online programming site where they allow you take your running to the next level.    Ever wonder why you constantly battle with injury?  Ever wonder why when in a training cycle you always feel tired?  If you are interested in looking into a different way to train that will REDUCE your miles ( and all the pounding on your body ) by at least 30%,, all the while  making strength gains, and gains in speed and recovery  then Cross Fit Endurance is for you.   Brain has stepped up to the plate and has offered a FREE  endurance certification class to the winner of this years 60k at Potato Creek.  This weekend long class will give you  insight on training methodology, nutrition, and running form.  This is over a $600 value, and very generous of Brain to offer that up.  Thanks Bro!

With out the help from these three businesses, and specifically Dave, Brandon, and Brian this race would not take place.  Please take a moment and surf on over to their sites and see what they have to offer.   I will not have a race sponsor that I have not had personal dealings with or that I can not stand behind.  Each of them has an "above and beyond"  approach to how they run they own businesses; which is hard to find these days.

Technology 1 Senator 0: GPS issues, and taking a dive

We once again had great weather for getting out and hitting the trails this past weekend.   I met Bill and Bob  to cruise the upcoming course ( Bill pictured left,  and Bob picture right).  I strapped on my borrowed Garmin 310 and hit the trails to map out the course and post it here.   Sadly, the Garmin has 6 buttons and somehow I messed it up while underway.  Apologies to all who are patiently waiting to see the course map.   It will have to wait until I get out again.  When I get home from work tonight I will scan in a map with a hand drawn course, with aid stations, and showing the drop bag area for the ultra runners.
In other news, I took a huge dive while out running with Bill and Bob.  First time this has happened too this degree in some time.  One moment I was running along in my own little happy world, next I was laying on my back wondering how I got there.  No worries tho, the ground was soft and muddy making the fall not quite so painful.    I did manage to make a muddy mess of myself, which was quite humorous to my wife and kids when I showed back up at home. :-)  Good times.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Updated Info:

I would like to say thank you to those of you who showed up for the training run last week Saturday. I hope you guys were able to get a feel for what the course will be like come race day. This next Saturday I will be out at the park around noon and I intend to map out the entire course with a Garmin 310. This GPS info will give me/us/ you collectively the ability to see where the course will be run exactly and where the aid stations will be located. I will not be running this entire time; but will have to stop from time to time to figure out where exactly the aid stations will be located. I will also have to work on keeping the flow of the course simple and easy to follow. The course on race day will be well marked with signage and yellow flags.

Ultra distance people: You will be starting at the same time as the rest of the runners at 8 AM. You will have access to a drop bag area near the nature center. The ultra distance will be achieved by running the 1/2 marathon course three times. Aid stations will be located 3 miles from each other. At the conclusion of the final loop you will return to Orchard shores picnic area where the start finish line will be located. The course will remain open for 10 hours. I am currently working on time cut offs so I do not have volunteers sitting at an aid station for 10 hours straight.

After I upload the GPS info to the blog I hope the course, and how it is laid out will be clear and easily understandable.  As always you guys can email me or call me if you have questions.  

Senator Brett

Monday, March 14, 2011

Training run update for March 19th

A word about this coming weekend's training run. I will be at the Orchard Shores Picnic area at Noon this Saturday.

I will have marked the course prior to this, so anyone is welcome regardless of pace; also, I will have a photo copied map to hand out for those who wish to have one.

With the map, and the course marked I am confident that no one will get lost ( although I have been told to never underestimate stupidity). My pace for runs such as this is somewhere in the 10 minute per mile range.
If you are not accustomed to running a 10k with out water please make sure you have the ability to carry water with you. ie a hand held, or hydration pack. Water will be available to everyone at the nature center. Please dress accordingly.

Looking forward to seeing you guys out there!


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Training run! March 19th at Noon.

OK peeps.  Mark this date down.  March 19th, at noon, rain or shine.  I will be running the back half of the course leaving from the Orchard Shores picnic area.  This should be around 6.5 miles and should take a little more than a hour to run.  This would be a great way to get your feet wet ( literally ) with trail running, and a way to get a peek of how the back half of the 13 mile loop will be laid out.   If you can not be without water for more than a hour please carry some sort of hydration with you.   A small hand held should be fine.  We can get water at the nature center before we get too far out.   Hope to see  you there.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Finisher's medal on FB

OK so the medal's are in.  The above link takes you  to the events section on FB.

Every runner will get their own medal with name, distance, and date engraved onto it, with exception to those who sign up during the last few days prior to the event.     My engraver guy RAWKS!  

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Finishers Awards are in.

All I need to do now is clone myself so I have time to get over to Hoosier Trophies to pick them up.  :)

The 1/2 and full marathon peeps will have a nice brass medal with their name, distance, and date engraved into them.  I am trying like crazy to give you guys a more personal touch with the race.   I will post up pics later tonight of the medals.  Also, the shirts are probably in, I just have to check with Dave from Metro who was kind enough to order them for me.  ( Thank You Dave!)   

On my list of things to do by the end of the month is give you guys a GPS mapped course.  So there will be no surprises come race day.  I would also like to throw out there that I will be doing a training run on half of the course on Saturday March 19th at noon.  More info on this later.
 Here is photo taken from the course:

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Finishers awards

Ok guys I met with an awards company yesterday and it looks like I am going to order them today.  The half Marathon, and Marathon runners will get a nice finishers medal with their name, date, and distance run engraved on them.  I hope this personal touch helps make the run a quality event.  I will post up (hopefully) a sample medal later this week. can follow along on FaceBook now as well.  I finally broke down and went to FB.  8-D  So check it out in the "events" area. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

This is a charity event....

All proceeds above that of operation (and after taxes) will be donated to help support the scholarship fund at Community Baptist Schools.  Community is a small  independent school on the south side of South Bend operating as a ministry of Community Baptist Church that has had its doors open since 1976.   The school has a current teacher to student ratio of 1 teacher to every 13 students and offers classes from pre-K to 12 grade.   The proceeds from this race will be put into an already existing scholarship fund that helps families in offsetting the cost of tuition.   More information can be found at the schools web site.

Friday, January 21, 2011


Yes, I know I am horribly delinquent in getting new info up on this blog.  I have new video, more info, and shirts that will be posted up here shortly.  I have been working with Dave over at Metro Run and Walk to make sure you guys get good runner swag.   This weekend I'll be putting up video of the back half of the 13 mile loop.  I went out and ran it during a rain/sleet/snow storm that was moving thru the area.   If you have questions give me a call on my cell.  574-596-3860 or email me at  Thank You!