- Associated Press - Monday, June 30, 2014

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Beer and running are a natural combination, according to avid runners and maybe a few avid beer drinkers.

“The more beer you drink, the more you have to run. The more you run, the more beer you deserve,” according to runner and beer drinker Nate Herrington.

This is why Herrington and his friend and business partner Morgan Jappe have started something called the MN Brewery Running Series.

The concept is simple. Set up a 5-kilometer course that begins and ends at a Twin Cities brewpub or craft brewery.

Your $30 entry fee doesn’t include a T-shirt, a medal or a finishing time.

But you do get a collector’s pint glass, a craft beer, maybe some live music, a sample of offerings from a food truck and a chance to receive a brewery tour.

“We kind of joke that it’s an un-race. You don’t get timed. You don’t get medals. There’s no motivation to finish fast except colder beer,” Jappe said.

Actually, the beer is cold even if you want to walk the 5K. And there’s a soda run option that costs only $15.

Herrington and Jappe, who live in Minneapolis, started a company called Apple Adventure Racing and held one brew run in 2012 and seven of the social runs last summer.

This year, they’ve nearly doubled the options with runs at 13 breweries and pubs throughout the summer.

Jappe said she and Herrington both have day jobs. They share the proceeds from the running series with Bolder Options, a Minneapolis youth mentoring program.

The beer runs are part of a new crop of noncompetitive, 5-kilometer runs that emphasize entertainment over athleticism.

But runners at the brewery series can probably expect a lower-key atmosphere and less enforced merriment than recently popular runs in which you get doused with colored cornstarch or dazzled by a laser show.

“That’s part of our model. We want it to be a very comfortable, casual environment,” Jappe told the St. Paul Pioneer Press (https://bit.ly/1wC5iRN). “It’s definitely not a serious race environment.”

Instead of shuttling in thousands of participants to a closed venue, the runs cap entries at 60 to 325 runners per location, depending on the capacity of the breweries.

The runners mainly run on sidewalks in neighborhoods around the breweries.

“We want to showcase the brewery itself and the neighborhood surrounding it,” said Jappe.

At a recent run at the Fulton Brewery in Minneapolis, some runners prepared for the event by having a beer.

“It’s like a carbo load,” said Jenifer Froemming, 31, of Edina.

“I like it that you don’t have to be timed. You can go at the pace you want to go, and you get a beer at the end. Perfect,” said Tim Bednar, 32, of Maplewood, who was doing his second brewery run.

Dan Royer, 35, of Eagan and his wife, Audrey, 34, also were repeat customers at the brewery run series.

And they’re part of a new Twin Cities beer and running social group called Run Beer Repeat (runbeerrepeat.com).

“I don’t know why beer and running go together. They just do,” Dan Royer said.

Jason Quarford, 28, of Eden Prairie, a competitive runner who is capable of a sub-16 minute 5K, said he came to the Fulton event for beer, not competition.

But he was the first runner to get back to the brewery after running a brisk 3.1 miles through the Minneapolis warehouse district and riverfront. He was awarded with the “Golden Growler,” a free jug of beer.

“I would love to do it again,” he said. He said the brewery runs are for “anybody who likes to run, anybody who likes beer, anyone who wants to get out and see the city.”

“Runners drink beer. They love beer,” Jappe said. “A lot of beer drinkers, they’re learning they love running.”



The MN Brewery Running series runs through Oct. 11. For more info, go to https://www.appleadventureracing.com .


Information from: St. Paul Pioneer Press, https://www.twincities.com

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