April 25, 2012 / Issue #3

Let’s Race

Interested in checking off one of your annual resolutions early this year? Run a 10k! And if you are going to run a 10k, The James Joyce Ramble is a great one. And if you’d rather walk, they have that covered too. And there’s loads of stuff for your kids. And music. And actors reciting James Joyce’s greatest hits. And beer. And if you really don’t want to go, have a fun race with the aid of the nearby playground.

Stay Close To Home With Obstacle Course Fun

Photo Credit: Chris Crandall

Photo Credit: Chris Crandall

We’re not going to tell you how awesome obstacle courses are for kids of all ages.  We’re just going to tell you to enjoy Howard Cosell’s obstacle course play-by-play from the 1980 version of Battle of the Network Stars. So many great Cosell moments.  Including his energetic “AND LOOK AT BAIO GET OVER THAT WALL!” call at the 0:40 mark. Then the post race interview with Scott Baio, “You handled the tires well…the monkey bars” (1:35).  Howard, you were one of a kind.

Photo Credit: Chris Crandall

Photo Credit: Chris Crandall

We’re also not going to suggest you build an obstacle course in your backyard (saving it for its own dedicated issue) to use in your Ninja Warrior audition video. Instead we suggest you head to your neighborhood playground and map out a few courses using the various slides, climbing walls, and, of course, the monkey bars.


  • If you have them, bring some cones, hula hoops, balls and anything else you can incorporate without too much trouble.
  • Bring some chalk to record course times on the playground black top
  • It’s highly likely that the smartphone in your pocket has a stopwatch, and if you bring chalk, you can record course times on the playground black top.
  • For a quality lasting memory you can play over and over again, chase behind your kids (or better yet, grandpa) and shoot some first person video.

James Joyce Ramble


The Ramble is an extremely well planned family friendly event. The course is not too hilly and rain or shine there will be lots of people out to cheer you along. There are always some elite runners from the Boston Marathon still in town and running the Ramble to show us all what running really looks like (and because there’s a prize purse). After the race, you can show them what partying really looks like. There is always live music and with Harpoon and Whole Foods anchoring the beer and snack food departments, it’s a sure thing.

If you don’t feel like running or want something your family can participate in together, opt for the Dana Farber Fitness Walk instead. It leaves from the same starting line 10 minutes after the race begins and if you are so inclined, you can strollerize your kids and bring them along.

Speaking of kids, if you have them, be sure to arrive early (around 8:45AM) so they can take part in the Children’s Ramble. Ages 6-12 can participate in 50 to 500 yard dashes. Everyone gets a prize (includes a book) and there are lots of other fun activities for all ages including an art contest for runners and non-runners alike. The Children’s Ramble is organized by Peter Reynolds, children’s book author and owner of The Blue Bunny, a must visit the next time you are in the area.

If everyone is hungry after the race, Legacy Place is right around the corner. Stop in if you’re in need of a sit down meal before you hit the road, with our without the ice cream!

The Details

General Info:
What: The Ramble
Where: 656 East St, Dedham, MA
When: Sunday, April 29, 2012 at 11 AM
Bathrooms: Just porta potties
Parking: Free and available at the Endicott Estate (start and finish line) if you get there before it fills up. Once it fills you’ll be parking on street in the surrounding neighborhood.
Tip: Bring a change of clothes for everyone.  At a minimum, it will make the ride home more comfortable.

10k Details:
Cost: $35/pp
Register Online
You can register on-site from 8:30AM – 10:30AM on the day of the event.
Strollers not allowed on the course
Start Time: 11:00AM

Dana Farber Fitness Walk:
Cost: Minimum $5 registration (free if you raise $20 or more in pledges (must bring them to the registration before the race)
Registration Form
You can register on-site between 10:00AM – 11:10AM
Strollers allowed on the course
Start Time: 11:10AM

Children’s Ramble:
Cost: Free!
Registration Form
8:45AM: Registration starts
9:45AM: Ages 6 and under race – 50 yd dash
9:55AM: Ages 7 & 8 – 100 yd dash
10:05AM: Ages 9 & 10
10:20AM: Ages 11 & 12