Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Running every town in Rhode Island

Rhode Island is a really small state. It only has 39 towns. So, I've decided to run in all of them while I live here. So far, I have run in 21 of them. I am keeping track of my progress on this page.

This past weekend I ran in two new towns -- Middletown and Tiverton. I thought I would be running in Newport for the NewportFED Pie Run, but it turns out that the race is in Middletown. (Similarly, the previous weekend I did a race sponsored by the Westerly Track Club, which was in Charlestown rather than Westerly.) On Sunday, I was going to Little Compton anyway, so on the way we did a long run in the wonderfully-named Weetamoo Woods in Tiverton, RI.

Rhode Island has a lot of localities that aren't officially-recognized towns. For instance, the University of Rhode Island claims to be in Kingston, RI as its official university address. However, there is no Kingston -- there is a South Kingstown and a North Kingstown (note the addition of a "w"). Officially, URI is in South Kingstown.

Luckily, we just got a Rhode Island atlas with the town boundaries clearly delineated, so we can tell exactly which town a certain race route or run was in. For instance, the Red Rooster Ramble, which I ran 16 times in 2010, is generally known to be in Warren, RI. However, only the first and last mile of the course is actually in Warren; the middle three miles are in Barrington. And when I did my warm-up run, I ran to Bristol. Who knew?

One reasonable question might be, "what qualifies as running?" For instance, I visited Newport and I probably jogged a few steps across a road or something while I was there: does that count? No. For this definition, I'm inclined to adopt Dave Dunham's rule, which he used when he ran in every town in Massachusetts: It has to be part of a run of at least three miles. I have also decided that it's acceptable if it is part of a race warm-up or cool-down even if that part of the run is less than three miles.

1 comment:

Carl said...

For clarification Kingston refers to the historic village of Kingston, part of the over one dozen villages that make up South Kingstown including Wakefield, Peace Dale, Usquepagh, Tuckertown, Perryville, Matunuck, Green Hill, East Matunuck and others. Just a thought.