On Sunday, November 27, 2016, I ran the Space Coast Half Marathon in Cocoa Village, Florida for the fourth time in as many years. This was the fourth of five years running this race for the Big Bang Series. The Big Bang Series, is a five year plan, in which they will offer a finisher medal of one of the space shuttles each year, with a three year Milky Way Challenge medal, and a five year Intergalactic Challenge medal if you complete all five years.
This year, the medal recognized the Space Shuttle Endeavour. Endeavour was NASA’s fifth shuttle orbiter was built to replace Challenger, and had its first launch on May 7, 1992 as STS-49. It flew 25 missions.
On Sunday, November 29, 2015, I ran the Space Coast Half Marathon in Cocoa Village, Florida for the third time in as many years. This was my third of five years running this race for the Big Bang Series. The Big Bang Series, is a five year plan, in which they will offer a finisher medal of one of the space shuttles each year, with a three year Milky Way Challenge medal, and a five year Intergalactic Challenge medal if you complete all five years.
The previous two year medals were for Space Shuttles Columbia & Challenger.
This year, the medal recognized the Space Shuttle Discovery. Discovery was NASA’s third shuttle orbiter to launch in August 30, 1984. It flew 39 missions, and is best known for carrying the Hubble Space Telescope into orbit on STS-31 in April 1990. Discovery made 5,830 Earth Orbits, 148 million miles, and spent a total of 365 days in space (1 year).
On Sunday, November 29th I will run the Space Coast Half Marathon near Kennedy Space Center in Cocoa Beach, Florida. This will be the third of five races in their Big Bang Series.
The series started in 2013 and they are offering a different medal each year celebrating each of the five space shuttles. In 2013, we got the Columbia medal and last year we got the Challenger medal. This year is special in that we are able to get two medals. We will get the Discovery medal above, but we will also get a Milky Way Challenge medal for completing the first three legs of the race.
2013 Medal – Columbia
2014 Medal – Challenger
Here are all the medals if you finish all five years.
Finally, here are the race recaps from the previous two year: 2013 Space Coast Half Marathon & 2014 Space Coast Half Marathon.
It’s time for Lift Off!!!! Besides Disney races, this is the ultimate start to a race!
On Sunday, November 30, 2014, I participated in the Space Coast Half Marathon in Cocoa Village, Florida. This was my second of five years running this race for the Big Bang Series. The Big Bang Series, is a five year plan, in which they will offer a finisher medal of one of the space shuttles each year, with a three year Milky Way Challenge medal, and a five year intergalactic medal if you complete all five years.
Last year the medal was for the Space Shuttle Columbia.
This year, the medal recognized the Space Shuttle Challenger. The medal was very meaningful to me, because as a kid, I grew watching the shuttle program, and was watching the day Challenger exploded shortly after liftoff. The medal has 7 stars on it to represent the lives of the astronauts we lost on that day.
The 2014 Space Coast Half Guide is now available for the 2014 Space Coast Half & Full Marathon on November 30, 2014. I cannot wait to run this for the 2nd year in the Big Bang Series, and get my Space Shuttle Challenger medal!
Registration opens for the 2014 Space Coast half/marathon on Friday, February 14th for anyone that qualifies for the Big Bang Series qualifying participants. It opens to the general public on Saturday, February 15th. In order to register early, you must use a provided code AND your name must match that in the database of 2013 participants.
Here are some notes my running buddy Stephanie posted.
1) The have moved the expo to the Radisson conference center. Hopefully this will alleviate the congestion problems that occurred at the Kennedy Space Center last year – that was crowded!!
2) Registration fees went up quite a bit from last year. Last year it was $70/80 for the half/full. This year it starts at $85/$95.
3) They expanded the full marathon field to 3400. The half field will remain at 3400, which is about what they had last year.
4) They are not allowing ANY switching between events this year – what you sign up for is what you must complete. There are also no transfers or deferrals (with the exception of deferrals allowed for deployed military with a copy of their orders – very happy to see that they are taking care of our military).
5) They are also switching to gender-specific shirts!!!
This year’s medal will represent the Challenger Shuttle.
The 2014 Space Coast Marathon & Half Marathon registration will open on 2/15/2014 at 9:00am EST. If you are interest in running this race, check it out at Space Coast Marathon & Half Marathon. Next year we will honor the Challenger Space Shuttle and all those involved.
Race Day (Sunday)
On Dec. 1, 2013 I ran in the Space Coast Half Marathon. This is the first race of five in The Big Bang Series. The series will award a commemorative shuttle medal each year for the retired Space Shuttles. This year’s medal celebrated the first shuttle, Columbia STS-1.
The morning started early. We stayed at the Hampton Inn, one of the host resorts. We were up and out the room by 4:45 to get to the start. I rode with fellow Running of the Ears friends (ROTErs) Greg & Stephanie Jackson. They were doing the full marathon. The half marathon started at 6:00 AM and the full started at 6:30 AM in the opposite direction. They started a half hour later and in the opposite direction so most of the half marathoners would be off the course when they got there. I met up with longtime friends Michael & Tara Bell at the start. They were also doing the half marathon, so we all started together.
The start was fantastic! They had a jumbo-tron screen at the starting line. When it was one minute to start, they put up an actual shuttle launch on the screen. It went through the normal logistics of a shuttle launch, and when it was 3,2,1 lift off they fired us off in smoke billowing like a launch. It was almost too think to see going through the chute, but no issues.
The run was on. The first few miles were really dark because the sun had yet risen and the street lights weren’t strong enough (one weakness that needs to be addressed). We all activated our GPS watch & phone lights to get through this part. When the sun did rise, what a beautiful sight. We were running along the waterfront the entire race. It was an awesome 13 miles of scenery. The race was through a neighborhood, so many came out into their driveways to cheer us on. Some had special treats to offer like Smores, eggs & grits, candy, and one home was a bartender making bloody Mary’s. I’m interested to see how many runners actually took him up on this!
Next Sunday, December 01, 2013, I will be doing the Space Coast Half Marathon near Kennedy Space Center. Starting this year, for the next five years, there will be a medal honoring each of the five space shuttles as a part of the Big Bang Series. Stay tuned the week after for a race recap.
This year the shuttle being honored is “Columbia”. Here is the finisher medal for this year.
Here is a link to the 2013 Space Coast Half Participant Guide.