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Featured Review: Wason Pond Pounder 2018

Wason Pond Pounder has been a part of Race Local since the beginning. It’s a small race located at a beautiful park in Chester, NH. It’s not the race with the biggest attendance, toughest obstacles, or steepest hills, but it’s a great 5K and features 24 obstacles. The best part, in my opinion, is that 100% of profits are donated to local charities.

Like most races, parking is not allowed on site. The parking lot is about 2 miles away, with shuttle buses running fairly regularly. The check-in process was smooth and fast, with volunteers who were polite and smiling. Bib numbers were posted at the entrance, a table was provided for signing waivers, bibs and timing chips were obtained at the next table, and t-shirts and swag bags were at the last table. Multilapping is allowed for $10 per lap, and even has its own table to make it a very easy process. Bag check is free and there are several vendor tables. The local fire station sells burgers, which smell great even at 8:30 am. There is no medal at this event. However, you’ll find water, several types of fruit, and cheese sticks at the finish line. There are plenty of porta-potties and there is a large changing tent. The swag bag was actually really impressive. Now, I usually peek into a swag bag, see that it’s mostly flyers and maybe a sticker, and throw the whole thing in the recycling bin. This bag has a few flyers and stickers, but it also has a cooling towel, 3 pens, a pad of paper, one of those sticks that has the anti-itch stuff that you can use on a bug bite, and a set of ear buds. Seriously, this is the first swag bag I was happy to open for a long time!

Although it is a very small race, the first wave is competitive and offers a cash prize to the winners. After that, waves go off every 20 minutes, including the final 3 waves which are considered family waves. Bring your kids as young as 8 years old! The waves were on time all day and the course was rarely crowded. In fact, the only time a crowd tends to form on this course is when a large group is trying to stay together. I’ve found that these groups tend to be very happy to let smaller groups pass by.

While the obstacles aren’t generally as tough as at some of the bigger races, there are some challenges on course. There is a set of monkey bars, an overhead pipe traverse, a sandbag carry, and an inverted wall.

They have an option of climbing a rope or a cargo net, with the rope climb being made a bit more difficult by being just after a water crossing. They have an obstacle called “wobbly docks”, which is four or five small docks roped together across a shallow bit of water. They look quite tricky, and people do fall in, but they are completely doable as long as you keep moving. While there is no real mud on the course, there is a water crossing where you’ll get wet above your knees, and there is a slide into the water where you’ll get completely wet. There is a crawl through the sand earlier in the race, though, so you’ll be happy to wash some of the sand off in the pond. Every obstacle was well built and sturdy, and there was at least one volunteer stationed at every obstacle. There is one water station placed strategically so that racers will pass by twice. The course does zig-zag a lot, so it’s easy to spot friends on the course even if you’re not racing together. Altogether, the gently rolling hills through the beautiful woods and the fun obstacles make this quite an enjoyable race.

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Episode 9 – Wason Pond Pounder

This episode, I talk to two of the *nine* committee members who put on the very popular Wason Pond Pounder – pulling in ~1,000 attendees, raising $40,000 for local charities, this family friendly, super fun event has been doing their thing since 2011 and is very popular with the local community.

Registration for their next event closes in just a few days – don’t miss out.

Audio only:

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Featured Review: Wason Pond Pounder 2014

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Wason Pond Pounder is a very special race – held last weekend, alongside the titans of OCR – Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash and the tri-state Spartan Race, it did something they won’t.

It lets kids run, and treats them well.

How well? Check out our very special Featured Review.

About the Wason Pond Pounder
Callan Grant, age 6 and ¾

I’m a person who likes climbing, running, and exercising and stuff. The Spartan Kids race was awesome. I also did Extreme Field Day for Kids and Ruckus, which was the best kid’s race so far. And actually, the Wason Pond Pounder was not a kid’s race. It was a full adult race. This is the first time I ever ran any adult race. Here’s my list of pros and cons:


• The Pond, which I loved because I was so hot when I got in there
• The big and little A-Frames were awesome because the wood things were like rock climbing
• I was really good at the Over, Under, Through obstacles because I was faster than my dad on the Under and Through
• Running is one of my FAVORITE sports, and I ran all 3.3 miles, except a couple hills that I walked up
• It was a good place because they had yummy, yummy, yummy caramel yogurt and I got to watch my mom and dad race
• The shuttle bus was awesome because it was a short ride and they had our race numbers. I was 290. And also, we had the same bus driver to the race and back!
• They changed my race time so I could run with the New England Spahtens instead of the family wave. That was nice of them.
• I also loved the music because I recognized them from the radio.
• Being with my dad and mom at the race and running with Dad and Sandy (I beat both of them.)


• I hated jumping over the wet mud to get to the dry mud.
• I didn’t like that I didn’t get a medal after finishing the whole adult race.
• No kids t-shirts! But they had grown-up ones, and that was not fair.
• There were too many bugs, rocks, sticks, and thorns.

10306734_10203383928775615_8917927328621092317_nThe race was really fun, and I mean it. Good thing there wasn’t any way for me to get lost because there were ropes and dirt paths and signs and people to help you. The bucket carry was really fun and the tire carry was kind of fun. I carried one tire and my daddy carried five.

I LOVED the ones where I could crawl under the ropes because I was really good at that. And I liked the tall walls that had the wooden things on them to help you get up. I did these ones by myself!

I also really loved the monkey bars. The monkey bars are ALWAYS my favorite obstacle. The hay bail at the end was awesome. I tried to get up there and I couldn’t so my daddy got on the ground like a turtle and I climbed his back to get on top. Then I fell down right on my butt when I jumped off. Then I ran as fast as I could across the finish line.

Thank you for letting me write my pros and cons letter, and I hope you have a good rest of the day!

Grade for the race: A+