On Friday night we leave snowy cold Calgary. The plane is delayed then de-iced but we’re just happy to take off. We arrive at new Terminal 3, it's huge and there's more than a few empty spaces. We check into The Venetian, after we tell the desk guy we are running on Sunday dressed as Elvis he upgrades us to a Strip view.
Saturday is Expo Day. I am up early and watch the rising sun shining on Red Rock Canyon across the valley. It doesn’t last long as grey clouds come in, some sitting low on the mountains. Elvis suits await, we are going FULL ELVI! The schedule today involves 2 events; a 10:30 gathering at the entrance then a 12:30 Team Running Elvi Rally on the stage. It is fairly quiet as we leave the elevator in our pink leis and big tinted sunglasses. We walk to the Sands which is not far and join a large line up at 9:50. A couple of people take pictures and we are commended on our line marking ability from a guy returning to his friends with coffee.
The line moves fast at 10:00 and we easily pick up our bibs, T-shirts then swag bags. It is organized impeccably with tons of souvenirs, clothes, product booths and out of town races. There is a lack of Elvi for our first engagement so the 3 of us (including Jailhouse Rock Elvis) disperse for further Expo shopping. It is quite tiring trailing about in the Elvis suit. At 11:10 we are ready for a break and pick up water near a seating area in the middle.
Unfortunately moments after sitting down I spot a booth with a Scott Jurek sign out in front and immediately after this I spot Scott Jurek. Mild hysteria ensues as we pelt across, all of our shit in tow, to get in the line up. Scott is incredibly nice. He signs both our bibs. When I ask about his book he mentions a raffle so we put one name in for a drawing at 11:30. Read more about Scott here.
Finally we have a seat and de-lei. We have accumulated a considerable amount of crap in our swag bags. I am trying not to squash the race bibs which are now rather valuable. Draw time approaches so we head back over. To my amazement my name is drawn from the hat and I win Scott’s book. He signs it for me and we get another picture. It is the highlight of the day. When I mention possibly running a marathon next year, Scott suggests just to go for a 50k.
The Elvi Rally time is almost upon us so we go over to the stage to sit down and await others. John Bingham is discussing issues with someone but we are distracted by the sheer number of people walking by who are not Elvi. It is 12:30 and by now there are 10 Elvi. The MC includes the wedding couples in the rally thank goodness and we are introduced to the ‘Elvis Mobile’. Essentially a baby buggy wired up to play Elvis tunes and fronted with a big Elvis poster surrounded by party lights - perfect for a night race. Later on we are to learn its capacity for beer storage. This portion of the day concludes quickly and we enjoy John Bingham’s talk at 1:00 including 'Eggs – the other white meat'. John also endorses smoking and explains that race time doesn’t matter. We depart to a very well earned lunch at Grand Lux.