Flash 12K-6K

February 15, 2020, San Marcos de Apalache Start Park, St. Marks

Date: February 15, 2020. Location: San Marcos de Apalache State Park, St. Marks.

An ecstatic Keith Rowe had finally reached a point on Saturday, February 16, where he could stop worrying about the details of the Flash 12K and 6K races and instead enjoy the setting for the post-race celebration at Cooter Stew Café in St. Marks.  The big smile on his face told everyone how he thought the morning had gone.  The turnout, just short of 300, was good. Keith’s second time at directing these races was, in fact, a resounding success.

Mark Priddy, Keith’s predecessor, was there to help assure continuity in an event that was first run in 1989.  Joe Dexter, the first race director and creator of the event says the idea of putting on a 12K race came to him while reading about two of the largest races in the United States – Bay to Breakers in San Francisco and the Bloomsday Run in Spokane. Shocked that a 12K could be such a large race, Joe decided to introduce Tallahassee to the idea.

Mark’s seven years as race director began in 2011 and ended in 2017 but he left a strong foundation for his successor. It was, in fact, Mark who moved the race from J Lewis Hall Park in Woodville to the confluence of the St. Marks and Wakulla Rivers near the San Marcos de Apalache State Park.  The courses run through a St. Marks neighborhood for about 2 miles before jumping on the St. Marks Rails to Trails path and heading north.  Each race turns around on the trail at their respective turn around points and retrace the same routes to return to the start (and finish) line.

The distances of 12K and 6K are unique as far as the local race scene goes. (Not entirely unique of course as the December race at the ARP, the Tannenbaum, is a 6K cross country race.)  Add to that the opportunity for a fun post-race social in the coastal town of St. Marks (Cooter Stew Café in 2019) and you have a fun event that continues growing.