Rocky Run set to snake through old stomping grounds

Rebecca Schaefer plans to run in Rocky Balboa's footsteps. Charles Mostoller/METRO
Rebecca Schaefer plans to run in Rocky Balboa’s footsteps. Charles Mostoller/Metro

Understandably, Rebecca Schaefer is a little stressed about starting a 50K Rocky Run at 7 a.m. on a Saturday in South Philadelphia.

“I hope the neighbors don’t come out with pitchforks and start chasing us,” the Center City runner deadpanned. “But so far I’ve gotten nice messages from people in South Philly saying they are very excited for it.

“So I hope everyone feels that way.”

Ready or not, a few hundred runners dressed as Rocky Balboa are descending upon the fictional character’s old stomping grounds this weekend.

Since the idea was first conceived in September, Schaefer mapped out the 31-mile route, gathered a few hundred buddies and on Saturday, will retrace Rocky Balboa’s trek through the streets of Philadelphia in the famous “Rocky II” training montage.

But first, she had to make some changes both for length and for law.

“It’s definitely illegal to run on the train tracks in Kensington,” she said. “Other than that, it’s pretty close to the original route.”

The fun run will start at the corner of Wolf and South Lambert streets, which was the site of Rocky’s fictional South Philly home, at 7 a.m.

The group, expected to be dressed in the character’s likeness, will cross through the Italian Market, pass through Independence Mall and run along Columbus Boulevard before passing through the Kensington and Port Richmond areas.

After a stroll through Center City and Kelly Drive, the 50k ends on the steps of the Museum of Art.

Some recent weather reports are forecasting a rainy weekend morning. But, c’mon. If you’re gonna dress like the Stallion, you should be willing to run up a snow-covered mountain carrying a log between your shoulder blades.

“I’ll be there,” Schaefer said.

But she’ll be easy to miss.

“I’ll be in grey sweatpants.”

____________________

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