First American Odyssey Relay Race To Bring Teams in Touch with History

First American Odyssey Relay Race
To Bring Teams in Touch with History

Washington, DC: Running and history will cross picturesque paths across three states, several Civil War battlefields and some of our nation's capital's most famous memorials as part of the inaugural American Odyssey Relay Run Adventure, a unique team relay event to be held April 24-25, 2009.
Spanning over 200 miles, the race will start in historic Gettysburg, where some of the most famous battles of the War Between the States were waged. Runners will encounter several covered bridges and streams in the early going before crossing the famous Mason-Dixon line into Maryland. It is in the town of Boonsboro that runners will then experience a different kind of history-making event--the first-ever Odyssey Oasis, a mid-race festival offering runners some much needed food & drink and showers, feature music and massage and, perhaps most importantly the unique opportunity to interact with both their teammates and other race participants.
The course continues directly through the celebrated Antietam Battlefield and then onto the C & O Canal, the Appalachian Trail and through Harper's Ferry in West Virginia before passing Riley's Lock and entering Great Falls Park in Potomac, Md. Runners will then head toward the historic home stretch, pointing to the finish of a lifetime amidst many of the landmarks that manifest the magnificence of our nation's capital. Teams will wrap up their multi-state adventure against the beautiful backdrop of the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials and the Kennedy Center, with the finish line located adjacent to the FDR Memorial in the shadows of the Washington Monument.
This inaugural American Odyssey Relay race is limited to 150 teams (each consisting of 12 runners). If you would like to participate, you'll need to register right away (deadline is April 10). Each participant will run three separate legs of the 36-segment course, and each team will be equipped with two vans to transport teammates throughout the race. It is expected the winning team, and most of the participating groups, will finish in 24 hours or less.
"We've spent close to a year constructing a course that will be incredibly scenic, safe and simple to follow," said AOR Race Director Bob Fleshner. "Whether you've done other relays or this will be your first, you'll absolutely love running where the locals run."
Teams will not only experience a remarkable run-down of American history, but they will be doing their part to help others in need. Part of the proceeds from the event will go to The Wellness Community-DC, a charity devoted to helping people affected by cancer.
Prizes will be awarded to the top finishers as well as to those with the best team name, best costumes and best van decorations. The course was designed from starting point to finish line with the help of experienced area runners, thus creating the opportunity to "run where the locals run."
Teams are encouraged to sign up immediately to ensure they secure one of the 150 spots. For further info, please contact AOR Race Director Bob Fleshner (

Odyssey Oasis Facts:
1)Some of the participants will actually be there for a couple of hours since Leg 15 will end at BHS and then the teams will run legs 16, 17 and 18 in a cloverleaf fashion, such that each one starts and ends at BHS. According to AOR Race Director Bob Fleshner, no other team relay race in the country has this kind of "bonding" event.
2) Boonsboro High School Girls Cross County/Track Coach Rebecca (Becky) Walter has played such an integral role in helping Fleshner design Leg 16 of the course that the leg is being called "Coach Becky's Kick Butt Workout!" In addition, Becky also facilitated Fleshner's meeting with the school's principal and athletic director, both of whom have been instrumental in helping him set up the Odyssey Oasis.