I am WAY behind on posts, but I've done two really cool races within the past month that you should know about. The first one was the TDOC 5k. Why was this 5k so special? Because TDOC stands for Tennessee Department of Corrections. And we ran at a prison. Just not just ANY prison, but the historic Tennessee State Prison that has been featured in many movies, including The Green Mile. This place has been closed for years because it wasn't fit for human habitation. So, it's not only a prison, but an abandoned prison. Kinda creepy, but cool.
There isn't a whole lot to report about the race, as it was only a 5k, but the experience as a whole was really neat. I picked up my packet the night before when it was rainy, which really gave the prison an ominous vibe. We couldn't go in - it is condemned after all. But I was able to take some photos. You can immediately see why so many movies and shows have used this site for their projects. The building is beautiful. Built in 1898, it was in use until 1992. It had cells for 800 prisoners, but had over 1,400 admitted the first day, so it was overcrowded from the start.
Anyway, getting back to the race, the next day we met up with some friends and ran the 5k. It was pretty flat. NBD. But afterwards, TDOC gave a walking tour of the grounds and told us a bit of the history of the prison. Our guide was a former guard who worked at the prison when it was functioning. Really interesting. He was a guard during the Pork Chop Riots of 1975 when prisoners got mad because they were served bologna instead of pork chops. Seriously - you can read about it here
. He also told us about Death Row and some of the infamous prisoners who were incarcerated there, including James Earl Ray.
If you live in Nashville, you need to do this race. You get to run in a crazy cool place, learn a bit about Tennessee history AND help raise money for Big Brothers Big Sisters. I'm absolutely doing it next year.
Next up: My recap of the Fargo Half Marathon!