No high resolution image exists...
All you need is a partner, a mobile phone and a means of transportation.
You can be on a bike, non-motorized scooter, roller skates, unicycle or you can be on foot, and you will be well on your way to possibly winning a diamond ring, among the many prizes, at this year’s Race for the Ring event.
The annual fundraiser event takes place May 21 at 10 a.m. in downtown and Midtown.
According to Calvin Curtin, 46, marketing director for Rogers Jewelry Co., the top 13 winners are eligible to win jewelry.
First place gets a Hearts on Fire diamond ring valued at $8,600, second place also receives a diamond ring valued at $5,700, third place gets a Heart on Fire pendant valued at $3,200, fourth place receives diamond ring by Artcarved valued at $1,750 and the least expensive jewelry item is a watch valued at $195, Curtin said.
Prizes also go for most creative team names, best costumes, and randomly selected individuals will also win prizes.
Among many things, they can win a bicycle, wine tasting, dinner gift certificates or even artwork.
There will be more than $35,000 worth of prizes, Kelly Siefkin, 32, Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services communication director said.
There are two people per team. An estimated 1,000 participants will race from location to location solving clues, riddles, challenges and giving answers via text messages, Siefkin said.
The distance of the race spreads as far as F Street to Q Street and Old Sacramento to McKinley Park, Curtin said.
At the beginning of the high-tech computerized race, everyone receives a text message clue at the same time but it will be directing them to different locations and asking them different questions, Siefkin said.
The first text will be sent by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, Siefkin noted.
“The team next to you, for example, could be going to Crocker Art Museum and you are heading to Raley Field – no team is following another,” Curtin added.
The clue includes two parts: location and challenge.
“The location will tell you go to a specific location and once you are there you have to verify it. For example it may say go to 16th and I Street and on the northeast corner there is a light bulb, text the number on it,” said Curtin.
Once the contestants verify they are there, by answering the verifying question, they receive a text response saying “correct” and then a challenge suggestion or question will come in next.
Questions will vary, ranging from questions about Sacramento to information about SFBFS, Siefkin noted.
The challenges range from physical activity to math problems. There are probably 50-75 clues and challenges this year, Curtin said.
You may text back the system words such as: help, skip or score to check your total points at anytime during the race, Curtin explained.
As the contestants complete each segment, they get directed to more locations and they get more challenges.
“It is all about being fast and accurate. You get more points for challenges than verifying location. There are three chances to answer and for every wrong the points become less,” Curtin said.
Most people opt for a bike. It puts you at an advantage, but it is not a requirement, Curtin noted.
The computerized system will tally the total points and inform who the winner is based on the highest number of correct answers and completed challenges and riddles.
The company that runs this part of the race is called Scvngr and they are based in Boston, Mass..
According to Curtin, last year there were about 136,000 text messages sent back and forth between players and the system.
The event raised $20,000, Siefkin said.
There will be individuals in uniform and regular attire posted near the various locations to deter cheating, Curtin noted.
Also the system will know if a contestant is cheating should they be answering too quickly because most of the answers can only be received by going to the location. It has a time map system that calculates when you should have the answer, Curtin said.
Contestants can call a friend or use the Internet on their cell for answers.
Participants are immediately disqualified if they have someone physically, going ahead of them, and aiding them in solving answers or if they are in a vehicle or motorcycle, Curtin explained.
“It involves local business, banks, hotels and such – it is like ‘The Amazing Race’ except everybody is not going to the same place at the same time,” Curtin said.
The race starts and ends at Raley Field. It will last about one to one and a half hours, Siefkin said.
The end of the race will be announced via text. Everyone will head to Raley Field for the after party at around noon to 12:30 p.m., Siefkin explained.
“The after party is a ball. It’s like a house party/carnival. There are restaurants giving samples, vendors, prizes,” Curtin said.
Chris Suter, 28, fire protection engineer with Sacramento Fire Department has done the race every year since its inception in 2009.
He competed with his friend, Chris Wallis, whom he has known since elementary school.
“I never heard of anything like it before. It sounded like a blast, and it is helping a great organization, so I figured, why not?” Suter said.
“I like going around, solving clues – I like the competition of it. (I like) trying to be clever and figure out all the puzzles and enjoying riding my bike around. The camaraderie also is great. Everybody is wearing the same T-shirt; everyone is having great time,” Suter said.
Hamburgers, hot dogs and a vegetarian option will be served along with baked beans, slices of watermelon, coleslaw, soda and bottled water. There is also beer for sale, Curtain said.
Goodie bags filled with gifts from sponsors and snacks, and water bottles will be supplied, and the winners will be announced at Raley Field around noun, Siefkin noted.
“It is truly the best way to celebrate a Saturday morning, and it is the most fun you can have for $20 (each),” Suter said.
Registration is $40 per team. This includes two race shirts, entrance into the after-party and lunch.