Tuesday: Don Your Heels and Head to 17th Street

by Borderstan.com October 23, 2010 at 10:52 am 1,688 0

17th Street High Heel Race Luis Gomez Photos

The 2009 High Heel Race on 17th Street NW. (Luis Gomez Photos)

The only thing really wrong with this Tuesday’s annual 17th Street High Heel Race and accompanying festivities is that they won’t happen for another year. How about quarterly? Contestants would have the opportunity to show a full range of seasonal frocks, finery and high heels — and it would be good for local businesses.

This annual event has become one of D.C.’s must-attend Halloween events during the past decade with crowds hitting 17th Street hours before the race to get good viewing spots on the sidewalk and at outdoor cafes. The first High Heel Race was organized in 1986 by JR’s Bar & Grill and the event has grown tremendously in the past decade. Adding to the fun are the people who show up every year in a new costume or persona: Behind the High-Heeled Glamour: A Quick Chat with “Anna Wintour.”

Photos: Borderstan will have photos from the 2010 High Heel Race on Wednesday morning, Oct. 27.


The 25th Annual High Heel Race is Tuesday, Oct. 26, with the “parade” of costumes — runners and non-runners alike — starting at 7 pm. The race is at 9 pm. A stretch of 17th between P and S Streets NW will be closed to traffic for several hours. The event is sponsored by the Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets program and JR’s Bar and Grill.

A heads up for newcomers: If you are newcomer to the neighborhood and haven’t attended a race before… and are thinking of bringing small children and dogs… please know that the sidewalks get very congested for this event.

Marshals and Volunteers

This year’s race is again from north to south, starting at Cobalt (17th and R) and finish at JR’s (Church Street). Grand Marshals are Mayor Adrian Fenty and Lena Lett. If you want to be a race marshal, send an email to [email protected] — you will get a free T-shirt and a good view of the race.

Rules for Runners

If you would like to run in the event please register at Cobalt before the race; you will need to sign a waiver. And remember: You must wear heels to run: No flats! The course is 0.2 miles — 1/5 of a mile–in case you are thinking of donning a pair of heels and finding out just how fast you can run.

VIP Passes Help Cover Costs

A VIP tented standing area is being reserved for 50 ticket holders at the Church Street finish line. Get more details and tickets at Historic Dupont Circle Main Streets (HDCMS) website. HDCMS is a sponsor of the event, sharing costs and providing a clean up crew after the event. Your $40 ticket cost helps defray the cost associated with the High Heel Race.


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