In our sixth year of hosting AMR Run + Refresh Retreats, it's time to put a bird on it, and bring the Retreat to AMR's HQ city, Portland, Oregon!
Join a bevy of BAMRs for the amazing 4-day, 3-night Another Mother Runner Run + Refresh Retreat in Portland, October 22-25, 2021.
Whether you want to learn more about running from Train Like a Mother Club coaches (including Dimity); participate in a stunningly beautiful race (26.2, 13.1, or 13.1 relay) in the Columbia River Gorge; do Pilates tailored for runners; be part of the audience at a podcast recording; run with Sarah + her BRF, Molly; drink craft beer, croon karaoke; or befriend other BAMRs, you will be delighted by the extended-weekend offerings.
Portland, Oregon, the quirky, bastion-of-hipness you've probably heard all about--and laughed about on the spoof comedy show "Portlandia." (Or on "Shrill," "Stumptown," "Grimm," and other TV shows set in Portland.)
Our host hotel, Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland, is, you guessed it, in downtown Portland, a literal stone's throw from Voodoo Donuts and a short walk to numerous boutiques, Pioneer Courthouse Square, coffeeshops, and world-famous Powell's City of Books. And, get this: The restaurant/bar adjoining the hotel is called Mother's Bistro & Bar. Kismet!
Our Portland home base is the Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland, a grand, historic property that's been beautifully restored. Every room is a spacious suite, allowing attendees to easily share the space, if they want.
The Embassy Suites is located a literal stone's throw from countless Portland hotspots, coffeeshops and boutiques. It's also a few short blocks from the Willamette River and the paved trail that runs alongside the river down the middle of city. Lovely!
The stars (+ the fall foliage!) have aligned: We will be taking part in the Columbia Gorge Marathon/Half Marathon/Half Marathon Relay on the Sunday of the Retreat! This always-sells-out race takes place on paved trails and small town backroads about 45 minutes east of Portland. Sweeping vistas of the mighty Columbia River and lush fall foliage provide an unforgettably beautiful scenic backdrop in this race, which dubs itself, "the most scenic marathon in the country." (We would agree...)
If you choose, the race can be the culmination of a Train Like a Mother Club program allowing us to celebrate the finish line together, in person, after getting to know each other through a private Facebook page for Retreat participants.
Not interested in running or walking the race? Be part of Dimity's epic cheer squads! At previous Retreats, numerous attendees cited Dim's cheerleading posse as the highpoint of the weekend.
Our traditional final-night, post-race celebratory dinner will be held at a lovely downtown restaurant/event space. We'll celebrate our accomplishments - and new friendships - with tasty food, adult beverages, and special desserts, then sing like mothers as we karaoke the night away. No pressure to sing - karaoke always needs an audience to clap (and laugh along!).
Given that Portland is Another Mother Runner HQ, many folks you're familiar with will be part of the action. For instance, Sarah's husband, Jack, and her beloved French bulldog, Auggie, will stop by the welcome reception on Friday. Alex Ward of Sounds Like Pictures will be present to produce the podcast we record on Friday evening.
On Sunday afternoon, Sarah and her BRF, Molly, will lead an optional visit to the acclaimed Portland Art Museum.
Opportunities will abound to share a craft beer or drink fair-trade coffee with new friends. There will also be at least one group yoga session, which, like all Retreat activities, is do-it-or-not: your choice!
So much to do: group runs, strength training, yoga, expert-led sessions, podcast recording party, karaoke, race, and many more ways to experience all that an AMR Retreat has to offer.
Here's the tentative schedule for Portland to give you a sense of the range of activities and how the weekend flows. Please know all activities are optional: As with all AMR Retreats, each participant chooses whether to emphasize the "Run" or "Refresh" aspects of the Retreat.
When is the Retreat?
Retreat is October 22-25, 2021.
Where is it?
Portland, Oregon, the quirky, bastion-of-hipness you've probably heard all about--and laughed about on the spoof comedy show "Portlandia." (Or on "Shrill," "Stumptown," "Grimm," and other TV shows set in Portland.) Our host hotel, Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland, is, you guessed it, in downtown Portland, a literal stone's throw from Voodoo Donuts and a short walk to numerous boutiques, Pioneer Courthouse Square, coffeeshops, and world-famous Powell's City of Books. And, get this: The restaurant/bar adjoining the hotel is called Mother's Bistro & Bar. Kismet!
What are the room rates at the hotel?
Lodging is not included, so you need to make your own hotel reservations. Our host hotel is the lovely Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland. We negotiated a great room rate of $189/suite--and the price remains the same whether there are 1, 2, 3, or 4 women in a room. (Attend the Retreat with friends, or find roomies on the Retreat's private Facebook page.)
With every room being a suite with a pullout sofa bed, you can share a room and still have a door for privacy.
Room rates apply Thursday, Oct. 22-Tuesday, Oct. 27, in case you want to extend your time in Portland. All the educational sessions, all breakfasts, Friday evening welcome reception + podcast party and Saturday lunch will take place at Embassy Suites by Hilton.
What level runner do I have to be to attend?
Newbies to ultra-marathoners are all welcome. In order to get the most out of the Retreat, it will be helpful if you can cover 3 miles in run/walk intervals, regardless of pace. There are several race options, including half marathon, 10K, and 5K. Or join members of Team AMR as part of a boisterous cheer squad! The race is completely optional.
What does the schedule look like?
We’ll kick things off Friday afternoon with an educational session, then an evening welcome reception, complete with a get-acquainted icebreaker or two (Dim always organizes great ones!). Recording an episode of the Another Mother Runner Podcast is the highlight of the evening. (Sarah's husband, Jack, and their lovable French bulldog, Auggie, will join the festivities.)
Sunday morning is the half-marathon, 10K, and 5K, followed by lunch on your own, and a group yoga session. If you’re so inclined, there are numerous stores and coffeeshops to explore in downtown Portland, as well as the nearby Lan Su Chinese Garden, and Sarah and BRF Molly will lead an optional outing to the acclaimed Portland Art Museum.
A celebratory dinner and karaoke will cap off the evening.
I'm a new runner. Will I fit in?
Absolutely: All levels of runners (including injured ones) attend our Retreats. You'll leave with a bunch of BRFs from around the country (and possibly the globe) who will virtually cheer you on through your upcoming miles and races!
I've run countless races. What will I get out of the Retreat?
Along with the aforementioned BRFs (because you can never have too many!), you’ll learn from sessions on goal-setting, self-care, pelvic-floor health, and more. Plus, we know you've been hankering to see Portland for yourself--this is your chance!
Do I have to be a mother to be part of the Retreat?
Not at all (and thanks for asking!): All women runners are welcome. Nothing mother-specific about the Retreat (except for the name of our brand!). At all of our Retreats, we've had numerous attendees who aren't moms--plus moms of older children who attend with a grown daughter. We welcome all!
What's the "Refresh" part of the Retreat?
You mean other than being away from laundry-duties, having cooked food magically appear, and a bed all to yourself? All activities at the Retreat are optional--no judgment if you want to sleep until 9:00; sample coffee, craft beers, and CBD; get a tattoo or piercing (it's Portland, after all!); and read a book. We are also looking into having certified, vetted massage therapists on call so you can set up an hour-long unwind session. (Not included in price of Retreat.)
There will also be at least one group yoga class.
What if I like to mix in cross-training?
On Friday morning, when some Retreaters do a shake-out run, Dimity always offers a strength session bookended by a warm-up/cool-down walk. She often leads a similar session on Sunday morning. And there will be at least one group yoga class.
What's up with Train Like a Mother Club program being incorporated into the build-up of the Retreat?
I live near Portland. Can I attend?
Please do! We welcome locals and out-of-towners alike with open arms.
Should I attend solo?
The price of a suite at the Embassy Suites is the same whether you are solo or have up to three roommates. With every room being a suite with a pullout sofa bed, you can share a room and still have a door for privacy.
And if I attend with just me, myself, and I, can I get a roommate?
Yes: Hold off on booking a room. Within 48 hours of registering for Retreat, you'll get invited to private Facebook group for Retreat. You can then post that you are looking for a roomie; you should be able to find one pretty easily. Once you find a roomie, book a room at Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland.
Is there a limit on how many gals can attend?
Yes, we want to ensure everyone has a memorable, meaningful experience, so we are limiting the Retreat to 65 women.
What's included in the package?
Guided runs; all educational sessions; meals (hot buffet breakfast on Saturday + Sunday; farewell brunch on Monday; lunch on Saturday; evening reception on Friday; dinner on Saturday and Sunday); swag bags; and race registration for Sunday's race.
Travel to/from Portland is not included, neither is lodging: You will book your suite at Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland separately. Laughter, camaraderie, and sweat: limitless—and free-flowing all Retreat long.
Just so I'm clear: Once I register for the Retreat, I should book a hotel room at the host hotel?
If only our children were as good at following directions as you are! Yes, you are correct: Lodging is not included, so you need to make your own hotel reservations. Our host hotel is the lovely Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown Portland and we have negotiated great room rates. (Room rates apply Wednesday, Oct. 21-Monday, Oct. 26, in case you want to extend your time in Portland.) All the educational sessions, all breakfasts, Thursday welcome reception, and Friday lunch, will take place at Embassy Suites by Hilton.
Do I need a rental car?
If you fly to Portland, please use public transportation or a ride-hailing service (Lyft, Uber, etc.) to get to the hotel. If you drive to Portland and want to avoid the parking fee, ask us for alternatives on the group's Facebook page once you register.
And if you want to drive around the Pacific Northwest post-Retreat, there are several rental car agencies located a short walk from our host hotel so you can grab it on the day you depart. In Portland, you'll have no need for a car.
What time should I arrive in Portland, and then, sniff, sniff, depart on Monday?
We'll kick things off around 2:00 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 22. If you fly into PDX (Portland's international airport), opt for a flight that arrives in the morning or at noon, as PDX is less than a half-hour from downtown. The Retreat will wrap up around 10:00 on Monday, so best to book a flight home that leaves at 1:00 p.m. or later but know that if you have to take an early morning flight back East, you won't be missing much programming on Monday. (Just an optional group workout and our farewell breakfast.)
Will there be swag, great running gear, and other surprises along the way?
But what if "life" happens and I have to cancel?
200 days or more prior to the start of the Retreat, you receive: 100% full refund to original method of payment, minus $175 administrative fee.
150-199 days or more prior to the start of the Retreat, you receive: 75% full refund to original method of payment.
91-149 days prior to the start of the Retreat, you receive: 50% refund to original method of payment.
61-90 days prior to the start of the Retreat, you receive: 25% refund to original method of payment.
0-60 days prior to the start of the Retreat: No refund will be given.
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