Get To Know Your Running Clubs: RunTOBeer
In this edition of Get to Know Your Running Clubs we chatted with Dan Grant (one of the club’s omnipitent co-founders) about RunTOBeer, a Toronto based run crew and event series with a focus on running, and being super awesome, and beer.
Want to learn more about them? Read on!
Tell us a bit about your club history and membership
We started in March, 2014. Originally I put out a tweet to the beer community (I'm a beer writer) seeing if anyone wanted to join me for a 5k run to Mill Street Brew Pub. That's how I met Tej -- it was one of those Polar Vortex days we experienced two years ago and he was the only one crazy enough to show up. From there, we started planning more events and broadening our reach beyond just beer circles.
Part of our mandate is to help cast craft beer as part of a healthy lifestyle. For our efforts we received a 2015 Golden Tap Award for our contribution to Ontario Craft Beer.
We now have 1,100 members (about 1,000 more than this time last year) of all abilities. Our pacers at the front are usually going about 5 min / km, while "sweepers" (the pacers who stay at the back) will slow to a walk if necessary, so no one gets left behind.
One thing that sets us apart from other run crews is that we go out of our way to welcome other run crews. At our recent, year-end run, we had participation from Pace & Mind, Parkdale RR, Night Terrors, Longboat, East York, TRIBE Fitness, Black Toe, Beaches and others.
Of course, what really sets us apart is that we ensure our runners enjoy a free beer at the end of each run. The more we've grown, the more we've been able to offer.
Where/when do you usually meet?
We run every two weeks (at least) but always from-and-to different locations. Check the Facebook group for details of our next run(s).
Any cost to be a member/join?
Are you affiliated with any events?
We have a year-long series of events planned with Canada Running Series. The 2016 calendar is still being finalized but last year we hosted three CRS tune-up runs to different breweries, as well as the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon official afterparty (at Amsterdam BrewHouse) and the Flame Ceremony / Torch Relay official afterparty (at Louis Cifer Brew Works). This year will be even busier with CRS.
Right now we're also finalizing details for two Ottawa Marathon tune-up runs (in Toronto) with Beau's Brewery.
Later in the year we expect, again, to be working with the Canada Beer Run to help promote their Toronto event.
Where are your favourite spots to run in/around the city?
I love getting onto the path along the Don River. It's a beautiful, largely unimpeded route from north of Bloor all the way down to the Martin Goodman Trail. From there you can head west on a road into downtown or east toward the Beaches with very little traffic to contend with.
Do you have any favourite races? Outside of anything that you’re affiliated with of course :)
The Toronto Beer Mile. It's so much fun.
Anything else that we should know?
RunTOBeer prides itself on being simple, inclusive and unpretentious. There's no membership or other commitment required.
To stress the non-competitive aspect of our crew, we also structure our runs differently. This means the 10k runners start 30 minutes before the 5k runners... who start about 15 minutes before the 3k runners. Our focus is on finishing together and celebrating everyone's achievements (with beer, of course).
Want to learn more?
Want to connect with RunTOBeer, or just learn a bit more about them? Check out their information below:
Looking for runs in and around Toronto? Have a look at the RunGuides list of Toronto runs and running races for a list of all upcoming runs in the area