Overall Rating
Overall Rating (6 Reviews)
3.8
(6 Ratings)(6 Reviews)
DIFFICULTY
1.8
SCENERY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SWAG
3.8
The Dream Mile is the flagship event in Vibha’s continued efforts to increase awareness about the plight of underprivileged children. It has come a long way since its inception in 1998. It has grown from being a small event attended primarily by volunteers and friends to a permanent fixture on … MORE
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Recent reviews

    PeteSinCA REPEAT RUNNER '18

    Event & Course Description: Vibha is an Indian charity based both in India and the US that supports education in India. The Dream Mile is a fund raising race held … MORE

    Event & Course Description: Vibha is an Indian charity based both in India and the US that supports education in India. The Dream Mile is a fund raising race held in cities in the US, plus Bangalore, India. I did the Dream Mile half marathon in 2014 and 2017.
    The San Francisco Bay Area Dream Mile is run in South San Jose, along the Coyote Creek Trail. The course description in my 2017 Rave is what was done in 2018. I did the 10K, which went north and turned around near the southern end of Hellyer Park (just under US 101 freeway).

    Organization & Production: The Dream Mile is Register ‘n’ Run: complete info, easy check-in (two 4-hour days of pre-race day check-in), well managed course, nice finish area. Runners of the marathon and the half marathon started an hour before those running the 5K and 10K. TriValley Running Club provided pacers for the half and full marathon distances. Friendly volunteers were everywhere, especially at the aid stations (water and Gatorade).

    The one thing I wish had been better was that parking was about half a mile from the start-finish area, with access by walking along the course. Because of the lay-out of the course and timing, this put people who would be doing the 10K and 5K on the course when marathon and half marathon runners would be passing through that part of the course. The trail is fairly wide, so interference could be avoided by alertness on the part of those walking from their cars to the start-finish area. Avoiding the possible interference would have been better if other nearby parking was available (like in 2017).

    Swag & Goodies:

    Bib: The bibs are color coded, yellow for marathon, gray for half marathon, and green for 5K. The 10K bib has a broad blue strip at the top with the logos for Vibha and the race in yellow and white. The middle is a broad white stripe with the bib number. At the bottom is a narrow blue stripe with the distance. It’s simple and pleasant.

    T-Shirt: The men’s race T-shirt is tech type Tee with an orange body, front and back, and yellow insets at the side. The inset for the women’s Tee was wider, with three sections, yellow-orange-yellow. The front has the logos for Vibha and the race in yellow, black, and white. The left sleeve has a sun in yellow, with “20 Years Strong” in the sun in black. 2018 was the 20th year in which Dream Mile races have been run. The back has the logos of the sponsors. I don’t know if it’ll be a favorite, but it’s very striking and nice.

    Finisher’s Medal: The medallion is square, in a brushed pewter color. At the top is the Vibha logo. Under that is the number “20”, for the 20 years Dream Mile races have been run. Below the “20” is the Dream mile logo, and across the bottom, “2018”. Medal ribbons were also color-coded, blue for the 10K, with the Vibha logo, race name, and year along the ribbon.

    Since the bibs, race T-shirt, and finisher’s medal did not identify a race location it is likely that the same bibs, shirts, and medals were used in all Dream Mile races in the US.

    Finish & Recovery Area: The finish area is a cul de sac street, which provided plenty of room for a chiropractor tent, sponsors’ tents, and food. I wasn’t feeling great, so I just grabbed a chilled water bottle from near the finish line and flopped down on nearby grass. There was Indian food from a caterer/restaurant sponsor, so it was a bit frustrating being sore and unsure whether I could keep down spicy food. But for people who could, wow!

    My Results & Opinion of the Race: On the whole this was a well run race. All the cheery volunteers at the aid stations made for a great race experience. This was my third time doing the Dream Mile and all three times was a great race experience. I’ll definitely consider doing it again.

    One of the great experiences for me was meeting RaceRaves’ “own” Jen_L. She’s a really nice lady and was doing pacing for the marathon.

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    4
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    5

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    trainwithv FIRST-TIMER '17

    I guess they don't care if runners come back, badly organized, ran an extra 1/2 mile , stupid 1 mins adjustment, why bother? Age groups also made no sense 35-50? MORE

    I guess they don’t care if runners come back, badly organized, ran an extra 1/2 mile , stupid 1 mins adjustment, why bother? Age groups also made no sense 35-50? Wtf?

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    1
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    2

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    PeteSinCA Jun 08, 2017 at 6:54pm

    When I got to the turn around all distances were supposed to use (if I understand correctly) there was a manned time check station an additional volunteer, and chalk marking.… MORE

    When I got to the turn around all distances were supposed to use (if I understand correctly) there was a manned time check station an additional volunteer, and chalk marking. Did the "rabbit" ignore all that? LESS

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    trainwithv Jun 09, 2017 at 3:53am

    no this was at the first 1/2 mile from the start, the bikes led the first corral down the street an extra 1/2 mile and then told us to turn… MORE

    no this was at the first 1/2 mile from the start, the bikes led the first corral down the street an extra 1/2 mile and then told us to turn around, come on, I am not a stupid rabbit!! LESS

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    PeteSinCA Jun 10, 2017 at 6:17am

    Ah, I understand what happened. The rabbit missed that first turn at Fontanoso. Not good prep by the rabbit (the course map is clear), and a course marshal would have… MORE

    Ah, I understand what happened. The rabbit missed that first turn at Fontanoso. Not good prep by the rabbit (the course map is clear), and a course marshal would have made that mistake difficult to make. I think the half didn't have that happen, though being at the tail of the pack and familiar with the course (Race to the End of Summer is the same at that point) I probably wouldn't have noticed such a mistake. BTW, I agree that the age groups were weird (51-100? Really?). I think it's being unfamiliar with common race practices. I know their Dream Team people participate in other races (they had a group at Brazen's Western Pacific), so I think the familiarity will improve. LESS

     
    PeteSinCA REPEAT RUNNER '17

    Event & Course Description: Vibha is an Indian charity based both in India and the US that supports education in India. The Dream Mile is a fund raising race held … MORE

    Event & Course Description: Vibha is an Indian charity based both in India and the US that supports education in India. The Dream Mile is a fund raising race held some 9 cities in the US, plus Bangalore, India. I did the Dream Mile half marathon in 2014.

    The San Francisco Bay Area Dream Mile is run in South San Jose, along the Coyote Creek Trail. Unlike in 2014, the start/finish area is on Embedded Way, a short cul de sac street by the Silver Creek Sportsplex, with marathon, half marathon, 10K, and 5K distances. The half marathon course, which I did, was a double out-and-back. All distances ran about a mile on streets to a trail entry point at Silver Creek Valley Road. The first out-and-back leg ran north along Coyote Creek Trail, turning around at the south end of Hellyer Park. When the trail entry point was reached, runners then went south along the trail for about 3 1/2 miles to a turn-around just past Metcalf Park. Runners then returned to the trail entry and retraced their steps on streets back to the start/finish area. Marathon runners did the half marathon course, except their second out-and-back leg was longer. They then repeated that long second leg. 10K runners only did the northward out-and-back. 5K runners had a turn-around about a half mile into the northward out-and-back.

    The course was fairly flat – with some 5-20 foot dips and rises – paved trail and city streets. The street section was through a modern light industrial area. The trail went between the creek, which is somewhat wooded, and light industrial and residential areas; sometimes both sides were wooded, though a nearby freeway reminded runners where they were. As a whole, the trail is not stunning, but definitely very pleasant. Winter 2016-2017 was very wet, and Coyote Creek flooded parts of the trail, Hellyer Park, and a neighborhood in San Jose. Brazen had to re-route the half marathon course for their Hellyer race. Vibha had to re-route their marathon course, due to damage to the trail. Now (June!) there are just a few yards where sandbags keep the creek off the trail. Piles of brush can be seen at many points in the creek. Visually it’s a very different experience from fall 2015, when I did the Race to the End of Summer on more or less the same course and it was quite dry.

    Organization & Production: Vibha’s website has very complete information, and registration is easy. Both course maps (in a couple of data formats) and elevation profiles were available. I did packet pick-up 2 days before the race, at a local sports goods store – very efficient. The start time for the marathon and the half was 7 AM, and 8 AM for the 10K and 5K runners. The early start was very welcome on a somewhat warm day. The 1 hour separation also minimized the two groups passing by each other in opposite directions. Being slow, I did experience that for a few hundred yards, but most runners of the full and half would have missed them entirely or almost so.

    When I Raved the 2014 running of the Dream Mile, I commented that it seemed like volunteers were everywhere. Volunteers wear distinctive T-shirts, so they are easily noticed. And Dream Mile 2017 was similarly supported by many, very friendly, volunteers. The course is not complicated, but there were chalk markings and/or course marshals wherever there was a turn or chance for confusion. There were mile markers every mile, and aid stations were spaced 1-2 miles apart (3 were within a half mile of each other, where runners left the street and near the junction of the 2 out-and-back legs). The aid stations for the first out-and-back leg had water and electrolyte drink only. The stations for the second out-and-back leg – used only by runners doing the half and full marathons – also had bananas, GU gel packets, and fruit bars.

    All the volunteers I encountered were very very friendly and encouraging. Tri-Valley Running Club provided pacers for both the half marathon and the marathon, with various pace times. I tried to thank as many volunteers and pacers as I could. Volunteers are a really large part of a race experience, and they made this experience really pleasant.

    Swag & Goodies:
    I mentioned in my Rave for the 2014 Dream Mile that there was Indian food in the finish area. That was true again this year, and as late as I finished, there was still plenty. I was able to sample it, but was very disappointed that it wasn’t going to work for me. It was delicious, but if I had tried to force myself to do more than sample it …

    Bib: The half marathon bib had a gray background, with a white stripe where the bib number is printed in gray. The background and number color were color-coded for the distances. At the top, in white and yellow are the logos for Vibha and the Cream Mile. At the bottom, in white, is the distance the participant did. The 10K bib was very attractive, a red background and bib number color.

    T-Shirt: The race T-shirt is very bright lime green tech type, with bright blue inserts at the sides. The front is very similar to the top of the bib, featuring the logos for Vibha and the Dream Mile. Just below the slogan for the race is the year. According to the Bay Area Dream Mile website, 2017 was the first year the race Tees were tech type; my Tee from 2014 is cotton. The back features the logos of race sponsors, in fairly large print, very nice for the sponsors, and interesting and readable for people who chance to see the shirts. I don’t think it will be a favorite, but it’s a nice Tee, and I won’t hesitate to wear it for workouts like I do other race Tees.

    Finisher’s Medal: The finisher’s medal is substantial, a white background, with about 1/8“ brushed metal outer rim. Across the top are the logos for Vibha and the race. Below that are a silhouette of a student reading and the year, 2017. There were different colored ribbons for the half marathon and the marathon. The ribbon for the half is gray, with the logos for Vibha and the race, the year, and the distance. It is likely, since the location and date are not on the T-shirt, the medallion, or the ribbon, that the same shirts and medals are being used at all 9 Dream Mile events in the US. Vibha is a charity, so works for me!

    My Results & Opinion of the Race: My results … well, I finished. I don’t love my time, but it was what I could do. It may have been affected by my having a cold, it might have been affected by my having done a half 8 days previous. Whatever. It was an honest effort, and if I’m less than thrilled, well, I can work on improving.

    If it isn’t incredibly obvious, I think the Bay Area Dream Mile was a really excellent race experience. My sole regret was not being able to enjoy the excellent Indian food as much as I would have wished. But that’s on me, too. I would definitely consider doing the Dream Mile again (would my system handle the food better if I did the 10K? Hmmmmmm …).

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    5

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    Jen_L FIRST-TIMER '16

    I ran this race as the 2:20 pacer, so I did not have to pay the entry fee. This race is usually held in May/June, but due to permit issues, … MORE

    I ran this race as the 2:20 pacer, so I did not have to pay the entry fee.

    This race is usually held in May/June, but due to permit issues, they moved it to November this year. Perhaps as a result, the half marathon field was very small – only 150 finishers. The race benefits an organization that helps poor children in India and also in the U.S.
    The course was all paved, and started and ended in an office park in San Jose. 11 miles of the race were along the Coyote Creek Trail, which seems mostly flat but actually has a long, very gradual incline from mile 3-9. Total elevation gain/loss: 111 feet (Garmin).
    There was plenty of free parking at an office lot up the hill from the start/finish area.
    Aid stations were about 2 miles apart. They had Gatorade and water (and fruit?) at all AS and one of the later ones (mile 8? 9?) they had Gu.
    There were about 14 porta potties at the start, no lines before the half because the field was so small. I think there was one or two bathrooms along the course.
    As for swag, runners got a nice die-cast medal, which was larger for the half marathon finishers than for the 5k/10k folks and a purple cotton race shirt (which I skipped). The post-race food was AMAZING. I loved the catered Indian food, probably the best post-race food I’ve ever had.
    What I liked about this race: Race logistics were super easy. Scenic course and decent weather. The community vibe was strong and it felt good to know that the race proceeds were going to a charity. The organizers seemed to really care and implement feedback from previous years. And the food, of course!
    What I didn’t like: While I usually like smaller races, this one was a bit too small – especially since I wasn’t running with anyone for 75% of the race and didn’t have headphones. Apparently, previous iterations of this event had attracted more runners. I think they are moving this race back to May/June, so maybe the number of runners will go back up.
    PR-ability: this is a pretty PR-friendly course and the weather was optimal (though it would be hotter in May/June). The one downside is number of runners and spectators – if you’re someone who is motivated by chasing down people or cheering crowds, this race isn’t for you.

    DIFFICULTY
    1
    PRODUCTION
    4
    My Report
    SCENERY
    3
    SWAG
    4

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    PeteSinCA Nov 24, 2016 at 2:27pm

    For what it's worth, there were 283 half marathon finishers in the 2014 Dream Mile. I hope Vibha can get their numbers up, for the sake of the charity. But… MORE

    For what it's worth, there were 283 half marathon finishers in the 2014 Dream Mile. I hope Vibha can get their numbers up, for the sake of the charity. But for budget constraints (doing 3 turkey trots) I would like to have done the Dream Mile this year. LESS

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    sfgal78 FIRST-TIMER '15

    a couple of my running buddies had participated in this event in previous years and said great things about it, so i decided to give it a try. in addition … MORE

    a couple of my running buddies had participated in this event in previous years and said great things about it, so i decided to give it a try. in addition to the usual foot races, there was also a carnival for kids at the finish line and all proceeds would benefit education for underprivileged children. i’m definitely a fan of an event that focuses on kids!

    for this particular event, there was a choice of 3 distances:
    1. half marathon (13.1 miles)
    2. 10k (6.2 miles)
    3. 5k (3.1 miles)

    i signed up for the half marathon since i had a good experience running a half at hellyer park/coyote creek trail last year.

    the pros:
    -VERY REASONABLE race fees, $30 for the 5k, $35 for the 10k, $60 for the half if you register during the regular registration period. add $5 for late registration and $10 for day of the event (if not sold out).
    -FREE and EASY PARKING at hellyer county park. the organizers were kind enough to include the usual $6 parking fee with registration so we didn’t have to queue up and pay at the main gate. just tell the ranger you’re there for the vibha race and they give you a dashboard ticket for the day.
    -CLEAR MILE MARKERS for each race distance, in both miles and kilometres. seeing kilometres was definitely a first for me since i’ve only ever raced in the u.s. and all markers are done in miles.
    -ACCURATELY MEASURED DISTANCE, as my garmin read 13.09 miles upon crossing the finish line which is pretty much spot on with the official half marathon race distance of 13.1 miles. yes, i ran the tangents which is probably why i came up slightly under, shaving seconds off my finish time!
    -FRIENDLY VOLUNTEERS directing runners in the parking area, manning aid stations along the course, and keeping the refreshments’ tables well stocked after the race. i especially appreciated one of the aid station volunteers who told me to just throw my cup on the ground and go on with the race and that she’d pick it up after me! that was helpful as i saved some time!
    -LOTS of PORTA-POTTIES near the parking and start/finish areas. there wasn’t even a line just before the start of the half marathon and i don’t think i saw anyone else using these after i finished.

    what you get:
    *choice of PACKET PICKUP for bib, tshirt and goody bag at sunnyvale sports basement 2 days before the race or road runner sports in campbell the day before the race. for those who couldn’t attend either, they could arrive to the race early and pick up their packets on site.
    *white, cotton, FINISHER’S SHIRT with a colourful vibha dream mile logo
    *navy blue, drawstring GOODY BAG filled with discounts to local retailers
    *several AID STATIONS with volunteers handing out cups of water, there were at least 7 aid stations that i counted for the half marathon which was more than sufficient and very much appreciated on this very warm day.
    *customised VIBHA DREAM MILE MEDAL for each half marathon finisher – nice perk considering we paid almost twice as much as those who ran the shorter distances.
    *TONS of POST-RACE FOOD & DRINKS, including assorted bagels, peanut butter, fruit preserves, cream cheese, sliced bread, bananas, water, coffee, and tea. there was also a line for a full plate of indian food! i skipped this line since it was quite long by the time i got there.
    *SPONSORS including sweet tomatoes and ginny bakes passing out muffins, cookies, and granola bars at the finish area.
    *AUTOMATED EMAILS with your starting time, split at the turnaround point, and official finish time. gotta love technology!

    the cons:
    -since the aid stations were not listed on the website, nor were they marked on the course maps, i had to ask 4 or 5 volunteers before someone could tell me where exactly the water & aid stations were. even though the 5th volunteer (after doing some digging herself) told me that the stations were at miles 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12, she was wrong as this is not where they were. based on my garmin, the stations were located at approximately 1.6, 2.9, 4.4, 6, 7.9, 9.5, 11, 12.3 miles, respectively. it was a bit challenging to time my water and electrolyte intake since these did not match what the volunteer told me, and i also had to think/calculate the aid stations after the half marathon turnaround point. i think it would be helpful to list these aid stations on the map for future runnings of this event.
    -this course was also not very scenic. although we ran through hellyer county park/coyote creek trail, i basically saw one tree after another, after another.
    -around mile 11, the half marathon course merged with the 10k course, and around mile 12, all three courses merged together which created quite a bit of congestion especially on such a narrow trail.

    i was pleased with my strong finish, as i managed to pass quite a few runners in the second half, and wound up placing 4th in my age group (missing the podium by 25 seconds) and 8th female in the half marathon.

    thank you to vibha for putting on such a well organized event!

    DIFFICULTY
    2
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    2
    SWAG
    4

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    PeteSinCA FIRST-TIMER '14

    Course description: The Dream Mile course is an out-and-back, starting in San Jose's Hellyer Park, and following the Coyote Creek Trail southward toward Morgan Hill. The trail is alongside Coyote … MORE

    Course description:
    The Dream Mile course is an out-and-back, starting in San Jose’s Hellyer Park, and following the Coyote Creek Trail southward toward Morgan Hill. The trail is alongside Coyote Creek, and is generally fairly rural, though it occasionally skirts residential neighborhoods or business parks. The scenery along the trail is generally beautiful. Of the races I’ve done up to January, 2015 I’d rate this trail the third most beautiful (after the Rock ‘n’ Roll San Francisco Half Marathon, and Brazen’s “Almost New Year’s Eve”, which circles Lake Chabot). While not a straight incline, the half marathon climbs about 100 feet outbound, and, of course, loses that 100 feet in the return leg. The three distances for the Dream Mile utilize three different turn-around points on the one trail. The Dream Mile is run in early June, when warm weather is possible.

    Organization & Production:
    Vibha is an Indian education charity that has activities in the US, but whose focus is on providing education for children in India. The medium-sized Dream Mile race (~1200 in 2014, ~1400 in 2015) is a fund raiser, organized and staffed by Vibha and its volunteers. The race day registration and T-shirt pick-up tables were well staffed and seemed efficient. There was a warm-up time led by some fitness people for those who wanted to do so. Vibha’s aid stations were spaced every 1.5-2 miles, well stocked with drinks and snacks (including late in the half marathon), the course was well marked with distance signs, and they had plenty of course monitors. It felt like Vibha’s volunteers were everywhere, very helpful and very friendly, working to provide a good race experience.

    Swag & Goodies:
    The finish area had activities for children and plenty of food and drinks. There was a carnival for children, and lots of Indian food, catered by one of the race sponsors. I was VERY disappointed that I was not feeling well after finishing and had to decide that eating spicy food was not a good idea! The atmosphere in the finish area was very friendly and family-like! The presence of so many families made for a very friendly family-like atmosphere!

    The 2014 T-shirt for all distances is bright yellow cotton (the 2015 T-shirt is VERY nice, white, with a runner in the forefront, and a silhouette of an Indian city in the background), with the Dream Mile logo on the front, and race sponsors’ logos on the back. The common practice in races in which I’ve participated is tech T-shirts for half marathon runners, and cotton T-shirts 10K and 5K for racers. The 2014 finisher’s medal is a bit light-weight (see pix), features Vibha’s logo, and specifies the half marathon distance. Vibha is a charity, not a for-profit organizer. If cotton T-shirts for all distances and less fancy finisher’s medals are the best use of their money, I’m totally fine with that! The Vibha Dream Mile is a fund-raiser, not a race for its own sake. I see these two points as minor quibbles in the context of an excellent race experience.

    My Results & Opinion of the Race:
    Though I didn’t do the Dream Mile in 2015, I would definitely consider doing the Dream Mile again! This charity benefit is done right and well! Vibha’s people, their race organization, and their over-the-top finish area make the Dream Mile race experience wonderful!

    DIFFICULTY
    3
    PRODUCTION
    5
    SCENERY
    4
    SWAG
    3
    My Media

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