General Questions

First of all, YES, our race is very affordable and that is one of our goals, so NO there are no additional or hidden processing fees that will be added to our registration fee.  
How do we do it? We are a completely for-charity organization – we are not a for-profit entity.

We have a whole slew of AMAZING volunteers who donate their time and talents to the cause, which enables us to

  • hold an amazingly fun and well-organized event
  • keep the cost as low as it is, and
  • give 100% of proceeds to charity

Sign up to volunteer here >

This is absolutely true.  And this makes the Berbee Derby very different from other Thanksgiving Day races out there. The reality is that today, most races are run by for-profit companies for the benefit of the owner. But NOT the Berbee Derby. We focus on our community, and 100% of Berbee Derby proceeds go to an amazing organization, the Technology Education Foundation. (In case you were wondering, yes, we do love profit, but we just happen to give all ours to a very meaningful charity.)

Registration Questions

Yes, but be aware that your team will NOT be eligible to compete for the team awards unless there are at least five people running in the same category/distance. To be eligible for team awards, at least five members must be registered under the same race category. Teams are eligible to win under both race categories (10K and 5K) only if at least five members are registered under both race categories. If your team does not wish to compete for awards you still must have five team members but you are free to have these members in any or all race categories.

Yes, as long as you make this request is made by team close on October 29th. After that date, this will NOT be allowed.

You may not make a change to a team registration after team close which is usually in late October.  You can make a change to the distance if you are running as an individual.  You can do this via email or at packet pick-up.

You are free to run either race with the bib you obtain at packet pick-up — but if you decide to change to the other distance, note that your timing will not be correct.

100 percent of the proceeds from the race go to the TEF’s grant program to benefit technology education in schools and non-profit organizations in the Madison area. Learn more about the Technology Education Foundation (TEF).

Yes, you may choose “Non-Binary” under Gender at registration. Starting in 2022, Berbee Derby race results will display three gender categories (male, female, and non-binary) for both in-person and virtual race results. One medal will be awarded in the non-binary category. 

If you have already registered and would like to change your gender selection, please contact us directly and we will assist you.

*Only results from 2022 onward will display an updated gender. Gender associated with previous years can not be updated.

Race Day Questions

We encourage you to get there around 7:00am for the best parking, or earlier if you want to join us at the pre-race activities. There is plenty to do at the Derby Village on race morning. Grab a hot cup of coffee/cocoa, visit the heated Gobbler Pavilion for custom Berbee Derby tattoos, photo opportunities at our painted stand-ins and a fun kids’ warm-up with our turkey mascot. You can even get photos taken pre-race.  Check the Village Map for locations. 

These are a few of many nearby hotels:

Staybridge Suites Madison – Fitchburg
2916 Hardrock Road
Fitchburg, WI 53719
Phone: 608.616.5664

Wyndham Garden Madison Fitchburg
2969 Cahill Main
Fitchburg, WI 53711
Phone: 608.274.7200

Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham Madison Fitchburg
5421 Caddis Bend
Fitchburg, WI 53711
Phone: 608.514.1329

We are sorry, but we are unable to give refunds. You may still pick up your race number and get your shirt and goody bag if you go to packet pickup at Berbee Derby headquarters.

Awards may be picked up at the awards table in the pavilion after the race. Check the posted QR code for results to see if you qualify. Awards will not be mailed.

Yes, you can, but runners with strollers must line up in in the Stroller Wave and are only allowed in the 5k.

We absolutely LOVE our dogs. But… NO, dogs are NOT allowed at the race. Sorry, Fido!

Some lots (those closest to the starting/ finish lines) are closed until a half-hour after the race is completed. If you must leave right after the race, park farther away from the finish line. Consult the on-line parking map.

The Lost & Found is located at the Registration tent near the 5k start. See the village map. Any lost kids should report there as well. NOTE: All children under age 10 should be accompanied by a guardian during the race. 

There will be porta potties at Derby Village race start/finish, and along the course. Please review the Berbee Derby Village Map for the location of porta potties.

Awards may be picked up at the awards table in the pavilion. Check the posted QR code for results to see if you qualify. Awards will not be mailed. Results will be posted on berbeederby.com by 6 p.m. on race day.

We will be awarding the top finishers with custom medals. Not only in our traditional categories, but we are adding a few new ones too! Start training and maybe you will get one of these custom commemorative medals.

• Top male and female finisher per age group (5K/10K)
• Top non-binary finisher (5K/10K)
• Top male and female wheelchair finishers (5K/10K)
• Oldest overall male (5k/10k)
• Oldest overall female (5k/10k)

• Top three teams (average time of first five finishers)  (5k/10k)
• Largest corporate team
• Largest family/friend team 

Age groups: 14 or under, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74, 75+

Stop by the Registration tent and we will supply you with a new bib. These replacement bibs do not include a chip for race timing. 

We discourage the use of these items in case you will need to hear any announcements by police or rescue personnel.

Packet Pickup Questions

Registering as a team member guarantees you a shirt and a goody bag.

We have a great pricing policy for infants and children under the age of 6.

If your infant or toddler (0-3 years old) will be in a stroller or pulled in a wagon, no big deal, they ‘run’ for free. You don’t even have to register them. Please note though they won’t get a t-shirt or goody bag.

If your child is 4-6 years old, you pay only $6. Once registered they would be receiving the standard t-shirt and goody bag that other participants receive.

NOTE: All children under age 10 should be accompanied by a guardian during the race. Any lost kids should report to the Registration tent.

You may pick up your bib on race morning, however…goody bags and event shirts are guaranteed ONLY for those who pick up at Headquarters, November 21-22, 8am – 5pm.

Yes you can, no ID required! We trust people.

You may not exchange shirt sizes until after the race is over and only if inventory is available.

Goody bags and shirts are guaranteed only for those who pick up your packet at Berbee Derby headquarters. Goody bags and event shirts are guaranteed ONLY for those who pick up at BD Headquarters November 21-22, 8am-5pm. We will do everything we can to get you the correct shirt size but please note the later you pick up, shirt sizes can be come limited.  
It is definitely to your advantage to pick-up your packet and shirt at Berbee Derby Headquarters in the days before the race!

Berbee Derby reserves the right to substitute items in the goody bag.

Volunteering Questions

Team Processing and Pre-Race Packet Pickup volunteers are needed prior to race day. Race day volunteers are needed in all areas: AmFam Food Tent, AmFam Photo Stations, Cleanup, Coffee & Hot Cocoa, Course Marshal, Packet Pickup, Parking & Traffic, Singlewire Gobbler Pavilion and Start/Finish Line. VOLUNTEER NOW if you want to join our volunteer team!

All volunteers will receive a special race volunteer shirt and will be entered in our volunteer prize raffle. Check out the Volunteer Information page for list of duties assigned to each area and register to volunteer. Sign up for Parking & Traffic or Cleanup and double your chances to win. We LOVE our volunteers!

The Coaches' Corner Questions

This is a very common question among new runners and there isn’t one answer that fits everyone since beginner runners sometimes struggle for different reasons. Many new runners might feel that the turning point is when they can run continuously for 30 minutes. At that point, they start to feel more comfortable and confident. So, it takes a little bit of patience to build up your fitness and get to a point where running feels easier. Just keep working on increasing your distance little by little – it does get easier.

It’s not a good idea to run immediately after eating because it may lead to cramping or side stitches. Your best bet is to eat a snack or light meal about 1 1/2 to 2 hours before you start running.

Pick something high in carbohydrates and lower in fat, fiber, and protein. Some examples of good pre-workout fuel include: a bagel with peanut butter; turkey and cheese on whole wheat bread; a banana and an energy bar; or a bowl of cold cereal with a cup of milk. Stay away from rich, very fatty, or high-fiber foods, as they may cause gastrointestinal distress.

As a new runner, it’s better for you to start with trying to increase the distance (or time, if you prefer to measure by time) of your runs. As you build up your endurance, your speed will also improve.

Don’t rush into formal speed training, such as interval workouts, just yet. Doing too much running at too high an intensity is an easy way to get injured. After you’ve been running for about two months and have a nice base, you can start by adding strides into one of your weekly runs. You can also try picking up the pace towards the end of one of your runs. Wait until you’ve been running for 3-4 months before you start to add tempo runs, fartlek runs, or interval workouts.

Most runners need at least one, even two, days off a week from running. Research has shown that taking at least one day off a week reduces the frequency of overuse injuries. If you take at least one day off, your body will have a chance to recover and repair itself. You’ll find that you’ll actually feel better during your runs.

The best days for rest will depend on what type of runner you are and if you’re training for a specific event. If you tend to run a lot of miles on the weekends, then Monday might be a good rest day for you. If you’re training for a marathon and you do your long runs on Saturday, you may want to rest on Friday, so you have fresh legs for your long run.

A side stitch, or a sharp pain on the lower edge of the ribcage, can be a huge annoyance for runners. To get rid of one, try gently pushing your fingers into the area where you’re feeling the stitch — that should help relieve some of the pain. Then, to get rid of the side stitch, try altering your breathing pattern. Take a deep breath in as quickly as you can, to force your diaphragm down. Hold your breath for a couple of seconds and then forcibly exhale through pursed lips.

If you get a cramp in the middle of a run, you might want to try changing your breathing/striding pattern. If you always exhale when your right foot strikes the ground, try exhaling with the left foot strike.

If all else fails, you may have to stop and walk briskly for a few seconds while concentrating on deep breathing. Continue running after the stitch goes away.

Of course, you can walk during your runs!  Some people who are just getting started with running assume that walking is “giving up” or cheating.  But taking walk breaks is actually a smart strategy for building your endurance and improving your running.  Even after they’ve been running for a while, some runners still use a run/walk strategy, especially for long runs or races.  There’s no shame in walking!

Feeding Local Minds

Did you know that 100% of proceeds from the Berbee Derby go to the Madison-based Technology Education Fund (TEF)? TEF benefits area children, teen and adults who do not have access to computers, software, and many other technology resources.