The Crescent Connection Bridge Run could in many ways be classified as a quintessential New Orleans event: a bit unorthodox, absolutely dripping in ambience, and rooted in bringing people together. 2022’s Crescent Connection Bridge Run saw just under 1000 runners and walkers as people of all ages and backgrounds gathered on the westbank shortly before sundown on Saturday, June 4th. Spanning 5000 meters, the race’s course follows a simple formula, heading up the slow, steady climb of the aptly named Crescent City Connection bridge, crossing the Mississippi river, and quickly winding down into the streets of New Orleans for the finish. This puts runners and walkers facing the sunset as it dips below the New Orleans skyline, bathing the scenery in classic orange and pink hues. The hill-heavy route isn’t likely to draw professional level runners or produce world class times, but with that kind of view, this may be one race that’s worth slowing down for.
That’s not to say that there weren’t some seriously impressive performances out on the course this year. The overall event winner for the men, Ivan Appelton, posted an impressive finishing time of 17:18, coasting to his victory and beating the next competitor by over a minute. The women’s side wasn’t to be outdone though, as Victoria Brignac ran a time of 20:05 to claim the spot as the event winner for the women’s race. She had the next female competitor beat by over two minutes, showcasing some seriously fast running. There were amazing feats taking place left and right at the Bridge Run, almost too many to cover, but we’ll hit some of the highlights here. For females under 19, first and second place were separated by less than a second, with Riley Imbornone and Emma Meneses finishing one and two respectively with matching times of 24:56. The male division saw four race finishers over the age of 80, being Glenn Ruiz, Walter Block, George Mayo, and Dickie Longo who led his age division with a time of 42:02. Not to be outdone was Clare Giesen on the women’s side who won the 75-79 age group with a time of 54:31. If you’ve been looking for a sign to get into running, no matter what your age, I’d say this is it. There were stellar performances across all age groups so if you’re interested we highly encourage you to check out the event results and give these runners and walkers the praise they deserve!
Looking at the race from a less competitive lens, it still had much to offer. When people of the New Orleans area are given a chance to have some fun and showcase their local pride, they always deliver. Fun outfits, good vibes, and camaraderie in spades all collided at this event, even drawing pedestrians into the energy. The Crescent Connection Bridge run is a great reminder of the way that walking and running can bring people together and showcase us at our best. You’d be hard pressed to find another event so positive that even the Louisiana weather decides to join in and manufacture a night that’s pretty much immaculate.
Regardless of your skill level, it’s events like this that show you running is something that everyone can enjoy. If this got you feeling inspired or wanting to spring out your door for a summer run, please take the time to connect with your local running community. It’s not a decision you’ll regret.
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