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The Amazing Race returns to St. Charles

The reality television series “The Amazing Race” has been going for nearly 20 years. On a local level, the competition met the real world in St. Charles on Sunday.

The Amazing Race returned to St. Charles, and so did the anticipation of many residents drawn to the popular reality series. The competition, organized by the St. Charles Park District, is designed to lure competitors of all ages to try their hand at winning it all.

“This is the third year,” said Joshua Williams, community center supervisor. “We hold the race because we do special events throughout the year. With the spring season, the Amazing Race is our fitness event.”

Participants tackled a number of different challenges, including ones that require physical strength, mental toughness and teamwork.

“We marked it as a family event,” Williams said. “It’s marketed to everybody.”

Julia Cooper, of St. Charles, was competing in the race with members of her parish.

“It has us out together having fun,” she said.

Cooper said for her team, the Fearless Four, the event was challenging, but they were doing better than they imagined.

The teams are divided into two divisions—recreational, facing 10 challenges and competitive, facing 14 challenges. The difference is about one mile of additional ground to cover during the race.

Participants are required to follow a set of rules, some of which include obeying traffic laws, being safe when crossing streets, completing the challenge on foot, and trying not to leave teammates behind.

The goal, according to Williams, is that participants will have fun.

“It seems people enjoy it,” he said. “We had 10 teams in our first year. In the second year, 13 teams. This year, there are 20 teams. There’s a waitlist of 8 teams. We’re planning to increase the amount of teams allowed in the future.”

Williams offered a few tips to making the most of the Amazing Race.

“The secret would be to work as a team and have fun and be ready for anything,” Williams said. “[The race] changes all the time. They have to be ready for anything. They have to come ready to work.”

Trophies were awarded to the first place finishers in both divisions and prizes were issued to second and third place. Additionally, the most spirited team takes home a prize.

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