A few weeks ago, six pals and I participated in one of our favourite events of the year: The Osoyoos-Oliver Half Corked Marathon in British Columbia’s beautiful Okanagan Valley. We pride ourselves on coming up with clever and current wine-related costumes for the 18 km walk/run through the vineyards. Some readers may remember us as The Real House Wines of Vancouver and The Walking Red. This year our good neighbours to the south provided the inspiration. We thank you. And, in Canadian fashion, offer up apologies if our mockathon antics cause any offence.
Marathon is a bit of a misnomer. The thousand or so participants are encouraged to take their time walking or jogging the 18 km through gorgeous vineyards between Osoyoos and Oliver. The term “aid station” also takes on a whole new meaning at the Half Corked Marathon. Along the route there are about a dozen wineries where “runners” can sample many different wines and lots of tasty treats. All the wineries do an amazing job, but Silver Sage takes it to a new level. It’s really tough to get going again after feasting on cheese, sausages, baked goodies and several generous wine samplings (not that I’m complaining).
Dress-up is encouraged at the Half Corked Marathon. While Team Make America Grape Again was undoubtably the most outrageous, there were many many fabulous costumes. Check out some of our favourites:
We thought we were a shoo-in for best prize costume. We had come in first as the Real House Wines and second as the Walking Red, but alas, we were knocked off the podium this year. We suspect the theme might have been a tad too controversial for the wine association with the Canada/U.S. border just a few miles down the road. Nonetheless, we were the crowd favourite. We got a million laughs and posed for countless photos and videos. We even had people wanting to buy our caps.
Undoubtedly, the highlight of the “marathon” for Team Make America Grape Again was when a trio of gentlemen working in the fields insisted we take photos with them. One of them was sporting a Mexico cap. Hmm, they all wanted to stand by the “Grape Wall Estates” sign. As we set off, they serenaded us with La Bamba.
It was another awesome weekend in the Okanagan at the Half Corked Marathon, and we’re already scheming about next year’s costume. Suggestions are welcome.
If you’re interested in learning more about the Half Corked, go to the Oliver Osoyoos Winery Association website. The event has become so popular, entry is now done through a lottery system.
I’ll leave you with our team photos from this year and previous years.
Back to more serious stuff for my next posts…West Coast Trail and Cambodia (not necessarily in that order).