FUN RUNS AND SCOOTER RACING
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About Scooter Fun Runs
Attending a Fun Run
Fun Run Etiquette
What Supplies to Bring
How do you Organize a Fun Run
About Scooter Fun Run
The intent of Scooter Fun Runs is to have fun, get to know each other, and help new dogs learn. There will be casual stopping to rest and water dogs and chat with each other as well as fast runs and funny mishaps.
You are welcome to bring family and friends riding bicycles or carts. Bicyclists are faster than scooters so they can be very helpful. If you wish to run dogs with a tricycle, wheel chair, sulky, roller blades or skateboard, check with the organizer of the run. Some trails are too narrow or rough for anything but bikes and scooters; others are wide and graveled or paved and will accommodate an assortment of dog and people powered devices.
Please arrive before the scheduled starting time so we can hitch up the dogs and have a short trail meeting before starting at the scheduled start time. We schedule fun runs in the morning to run in the cooler part of the day. In summer we like trails near water for swimming and cooling the dogs.
If you plan to attend a Fun Run, please let the host know (RSVP). If you don't have a scooter, it is often possible to borrow a scooter or even dogs, but the organizer needs to know what is needed in order to help arrange it.
Sometimes a run is longer than is good for your dog. If you and your dog are new to scootering and/or the dog is not in shape for mileage or is too young or old, let your host know before heading out. The host may know an appropriate place to turn back.
Fun Run etiquette is that people keep an eye out for each other. If you decide to turn back before the rest of the group, let people know. If you decide to turn back and can't catch up with the group to tell them, leave a note on the host's car. Usually you can tell someone in person, because we stop and wait at intersections and watering holes and whenever tongues hang way out and whenever the urge to tell a story takes hold.
Supplies to bring
- a jug of water to keep in your car
- a backpack, fanny pack, or handlebar bag for carrying supplies
- water bottles to carry water for your dogs
- snacks for your dogs, either to bait water or just as a pick-me-up (small cans of vienna sausages, a few hotdogs, or a can of sardines all work well for trail snacks...if you get canned goods, make sure they are the "pop top" kind, and please pack all trash back out with you to the nearest trash receptacle)
- plastic bags to clean up after your dog, and a way to transport full bags to the nearest trash receptacle
- a small or collapsible water bowl
- a longline or flexi, if your dog is not reliable offleash, and you wish to let your dog swim in the creek.
- a small toolkit for making scooter repairs on the trail (optional, but a good idea..loose handlebars/brakes, and flat tires do happen occasionally)
- dress appropriately in layers for the weather (we'll go rain or shine...scootering is exercise for you, too, so you may get hot while moving, cold when you stop...gloves and a hat are always a good idea, as well as rain gear, just in case). Expect to get muddy.
- scooter, harness, tugline/neckline, dog(s) (well, it can't hurt to put that on the list, LOL)
- safety gear (helmet, wrist guards, etc.) if your dogs are fast
*check your tire pressure and all bolts/adjustments, brakes, etc. on your scooter before you leave home!
How do You Organize a Fun Run?
Most of us start out finding one or two other scooterers. You can email
and volunteer to be listed as a contact person on this web site. Be sure to check your State and see who is near you. It is best to have many rather than few contact people per State. Once you have found a person or several persond who scooters, arrange a time and place to meet. That is as organized as you need to be.
Later, there is a bit more organizing to do. Many people use the email talk group
to organize their fun runs. Announce on the list who you are and where you will be at what time. Again, it may be just one or two people who join you. Pretty soon, there will be more. Some people form their separate talk group to announce runs. fFor example there is a Texas list for organizing local runs and a Southern group for the same purpose and to discuse southern issues - such as heat and alligators.
In the Pacific Northwest we formed a scooter club in 2006: K9ScootersNW. We will announce our runs on that list, on DogsLovetoRun and on a local mailing list. Our host is familiar with the trail and posts a description of it. The information posted includes the name of the trail, date and time of run, whether there are bathrooms, host's email, phone number and how to get there. Any other information is included that the host thinks is useful. Parking fees, for example, or lack of water or restrooms along the trail. The Host chooses a starting location that has parking since scooterers must unload dogs, scooters/bikes safely.
Before each run hits the trail, there is a Drivers' Meeting. The host explains the route and sets out information and rules. Rules might be to wait at intersections for the person behind to catch up so they do not get lost. Our club tends to bring walkie talkies for the leader in front and the sweeper in back. Newbies need an experienced person at the back of the line for safety. Cell phones are a good idea. Exchange phone numbers before leaving the parking lot.
Common sense is what it takes to organize a fun run. Our club has a business meeting at lunch after the fun run. We don't have a rule about bicycle helmets but most of us wear them. Some also wear knee pads and elbow pads - especially those who have broken an elbow falling on pavement.