Sunday, September 10, 2017

2017 Dallas Heart Walk {and a little fun around Dallas}

This weekend was the 2017 Dallas Heart Walk by the American Heart Association.  Pepsico/Frito Lay were major sponsors for the walk so Stuart registered to participate.  He even got one of their cool Pepsico Dallas Heart Walk t-shirts.  The kids and I walked along with him.  It was fun.


The walk began at the grounds below Reunion Tower in Dallas.  I love the reflections of the blue sky in the windows of the ball.  


We had hoped to arrive earlier than we did so we could check out all of the sponsors tents and do some fun warm up exercises and Stuart was supposed to be in a Pepsico/Frito Lay group photo.  But we lost a lot of time due to a crazy long line at the parking lot so we ended up having just enough time to stop at the port-a-potty and get in line to start the walk.


I couldn't help but notice that LPB had a big truck on the grounds.  Kind of cool (and odd) that they would come here from Louisiana.  I had wanted to ask them why they were there but didn't have time.  The walk was about to start!


We each grabbed a bottled water - donated by Frito Lay.


This was the pack of people slowly moving along towards the big red starting bridge you see in the distance.  The race had actually started about 5 minutes before this picture was taken so this is more the tail end of the crowd.  There were a lot of people there!


I had plenty of time to take a picture of these people.

We are almost there!!


Lots of people were taking selfies at the starting line.  I don't do selfies but Rachel wanted to get a picture with me so I gave it a try.  It's still not my thing.


I loved listening to Stuart talk to the kids about random things while we walked.  He's such an awesome dad!



The course was divided up with two options: 1 mile or 3 mile.  We chose the 3 mile course.


I liked having the total strangers on the side of the road cheering for us.  They had signs that said, "You are Stronger than you Think!" and "The Body Achieves What the Mind Believes!".


Along the walk I found myself taking pictures of architecture and signs.  This was taken at the First Presbyterian Church of Dallas.


This was, of course, The Majestic Theater.  I've never been to this theater but I imagine it must be quite majestic.


More strangers with signs. "Sweat now, Shine later!"


For each mile there were these signs to let you know where you were along the course.  There were also stations all along the course where people were handing out bottled water.


The Heart Walk is not like any other 5K walks I've done.  Usually there are a lot of people walking but also many people jogging and trying to work their way to the front of the crowd.  The Heart Walk isn't like this.  You just mosey along the whole time without anyone running past you.  It was a pretty relaxing walk.


We made our way to Woodall Rogers at Klyde Warren Park where all of the food trucks were starting to get set up for the day.  I tried to stop for some pizza but my family just kept walking so I decided to stick with them instead.


I have walked by this building many times while on various field trips in Dallas but I don't think I've ever looked up.  What an unusual design.


Ok this t-shirt wins the day!


We made it back to Reunion Tower and the Finish Line.  We all did fine and had a good time.


There was a live band playing fun music even though most of the people on the grounds now were just the sponsors.


I looked at all the reasons why people participate in the Heart Walk and this one jumped out at me.  My kids are why.  Those little guys are counting on Stuart and me so we have to keep our hearts healthy and strong.


We didn't have time before the walk to go to the Pepsico/Frito Lay tent so we made our way over there afterwards.They were in a special fenced off area with these fancy balloons.


Apparently that was a VIP section for the Platform Sponsors like Pepsico/Frito Lay.



There were more fancy balloons at the Pepsico tent.  Of course, these were in Frito Lay colors!


There were a few people in the tent but you could tell the party was over.  There were some left over bagels, fruit, and some cold drinks.  It was nice to relax in the shade for a while.


By the time we finished our drinks, everyone else had gone and the grounds were practically empty.  We were about to leave but the kids didn't want the giant balloon bouquets going to waste.  Stuart found someone to ask permission and then cut the balloons down.  Look how big they are compared to little Rachel!


They were so proud of their balloons that I think they may have had a little strut to their walk.  Isn't it amazing how magical balloons can be for a kid?  And here these kids had 30 or more each!


On our way back to the car, we walked past the Dallas Morning News.  The front of the building is inscribed with words spoken by George Dealey in 1906 in an address to the employees.


The inscription reads,
BUILD THE NEWS UPON
THE ROCK OF TRUTH
AND RIGHTEOUSNESS
CONDUCT IT ALWAYS
UPON THE LINES OF
FAIRNESS AND INTEGRITY
ACKNOWLEDGE THE RIGHT
OF PEOPLE TO GET
FROM THE NEWSPAPER
BOTH SIDES OF EVERY
IMPORTANT QUESTION
We found a B&G which is a part of a #DallasBIG tourism campaign.  You find these B & G's scattered around town and you get to pose as the "I".  Rachel's balloons made quite a statement.


Dallas has many Pegasus statues and sculptures.  Here is one of the cool ones up close.


Nicholas posing as some kind of superhero dude with a giant balloon bouquet that I'm sure is supposed to be some kind of giant ray gun or other cool weapon of some kind. 


We had some extra bottled water so Stuart passed one out to this man that was walking along with us.


We couldn't help but pause at this cool Lexus.  There was much ooo-ing and ahh-ing over it.


We finally made it back to the car but realized that there was no way that we were going to fit all of those balloons in.  Stuart was struggling to just get one set in.  It was funny because when the kids ask his permission to do something, his default answer is always "NO".  But for some reason when the question involved taking 60+ balloons home with us, he says, "SURE" and then jumps up and helps them get the balloons down.


We ended up giving some of the balloons away to some little kids in the parking lot then we let the rest of them float away over Dallas while we watched.


So we had one complete string of balloons inside the car....


And one giant red balloon floating outside the car because they just couldn't bear the thought of getting rid of it.


We were hungry for lunch so we decided to head over to the Dallas Farmer's Market.  We got a few funny looks from people on the street as they watched out big red balloon zoom by.  I took a few pictures along the way.


I'm not sure why this giant dog is on the side of a building. Oddly, there is no advertisement to go with it. It's a little strange but he is a cute pup.


At the Farmer's Market we had lunch at Cajun Tailgators.  The food looked great and it had good Cajun spice but it was no Ralph and Kacoo's or The Chimes.


We spent some time just exploring the unique shops and businesses at the Market.  You could definitely stay for a while just shopping and eating.
Our favorite discovery was Chelles Macarons.  These are not the same as the coconut covered macaroons.  Those are a different yet also delicious treat.  These macarons are like little cakes filled with creamy icing.  They come in lots of different flavors and in a rainbow of colors.  This was the first time we've ever had macarons and they were definitely a hit with our whole family!


We had a great time together on the Heart Walk, exploring Dallas, eating lunch, and shopping at the Farmer's Market.  


On the way home, Nicholas tried to hold to big red balloon in close to the car but as we picked up speed on I-35 the poor balloon just popped from all the force put on it.


But don't worry.  There is no shortage of balloons around here.

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