What is this event all about?
This incredible experience consists of teams of two to six people that will solve clues, travel to local points of interest, and complete fun challenges while discovering Mesa in a whole new way on bicycles. The course is around 3-5 miles long and will take 1.5-2.5 hours to complete. Teams may use BICYCLES only! All participants are encouraged to stick around for the fun party atmosphere and camaraderie after the event. So, if you like fun, adventure and making great memories, this is the event for you!
The Mesa Adventure Challenge is sponsored by the City of Mesa Transportation Department's Bike & Pedestrian Program, with Sierra Adventure Sports coordinating the details such as the route, clues, etc. They are the pros at adventure races!
How much does it cost to register?
Registration is $30 per person. You will receive a super-cool race t-shirt and dog tag for participating, plus you may win an award for best costume or being one of the first teams to finish.
Check out the City of Mesa Facebook page and Groupon for discount codes for up to 50% off the registration fee. How awesome is that?
How do I register?
To register, go to our EventBrite page, which is the registration portal we are using for this event. Don't worry, it is safe and secure. Here you will enter your name, etc. and make payment with your credit card.
Also, please complete either an adult waiver form (age 18 or older) or a minor waiver form (under 18.) Please have your signed waiver with you when you check-in to help speed up the process.
Where do I go?
The race begins and ends at Mesa Convention Center's Rendezvous Park in downtown Mesa.
What time is check-in and when does the race start?
Check-in begins at 9:30 a.m. at Rendezvous Park. There is a mandatory pre-event meeting at 10:15am that all participants must attend, so please plan on arriving for check-in no later than 9:45am. Event begins at 10:30am and is officially over at 1:00pm.
And don't forget to bring your signed waiver. Age 18 and over, please bring the adult waiver form; if you are under 18, bring the minor waiver form.
What should I bring?
Your bike and helmet, of course! You will also want to bring a digital camera or smartphone with good batteries, $10 in singles, pen/highlighter, water/Gatorade - and a willingness to have a great time! The following items are not required, but they can certainly be useful: a backpack, map, something to snack on, cell phone charger, and gallon Ziploc bag to keep your clues dry in case of rain.
What do I get for participating?
A super-cool t-shirt and dog tag
One of the most fun days you've ever had
A great workout
A year's worth of ridiculous stories
How many people can be on a team?
A minimum of two and a maximum of six. You'll sign up as individuals but complete the event together. Upon finishing the race, we'll verify you have completed all the challenges and then we'll group you together by team name.
Is there an age requirement to participate?
Participants must be 12 years old or older. Each team must have at least one adult (18 years or older). Everyone, regardless of age, must complete either an adult waiver form (age 18 or older) or a minor waiver form (under 18.) Please have your signed waiver with you when you check-in to help speed up the process.
What's the most important resource for our success?
You have many ways to solve clues: Your smartphone, asking strangers, the library, you can even carry a laptop if you don't mind hauling it around. But maybe the most important thing you can do is have a great "Pit Crew" as your phone-a-friend. Calling someone at home who has web access can make a huge difference in solving clues and getting directions to your destination.
What should I wear?
You are free to wear whatever you'd like, but a bike helmet is recommended. A lot of teams wear costumes and we will award a prize or two to the teams with the best costumes.
If I or one of my teammates can't make it, can I get a refund?
No refunds will be given for any reason, however you can switch teammates at any time. Just email us the following information:
Your team name
Name of the event - "Mesa Adventure Challenge"
Name of the teammate being replaced
-Emergency contact name/phone #
Do I need to be a hard-core racer to finish this event?
If you can walk about 5 miles, you will be able to complete the event - no problem. Teams are ranked first by number of checkpoints attained, then by the time it took them to finish. You may skip one of the 12 checkpoints, but getting all 12 will NOT place you above a team getting 11 checkpoints. Sometimes it's just a good insurance policy against mistakes such as your picture didn't take, you ran out of time or you went to the wrong place. If you make it to just one checkpoint, you're still considered an official finisher, though most teams will complete all of the required points.
Do I have to be an expert on Mesa?
No. Many of our participants will be from out of town. Being familiar has its advantages, but a good pit crew as your phone-a-friend is even more valuable.
Should I bring maps?
Maps are a good idea, and you'll want to bring any you think might help you - or have the ability to pull up maps on your smartphone.
Do we have to complete the checkpoints in any particular order?
You'll want to pick the route you think is fastest. The route is entirely up to you. There may be a set timeframe in which you must visit a checkpoint. For instance, Checkpoint 7 may only be open from 1pm-2pm, but that's part of the strategy.
Will I have to eat bugs?
You may have to eat something, but nothing too creepy. We'll keep it tolerable.
How long is the race?
Time - We may have winners in 60-90 minutes, but you've got three hours to finish. Plan to stick around for a fun party atmosphere after the event.
Distance - you'll probably put in 5-7 miles, give or take.
When (and what) is race check-in?
In order to speed things up, please print and fill out this adult waiver form ahead of time - or if you are a minor, complete the minor waiver form.
Do you cancel the event if it rains?
Heck no! Many of our participants think the rainy day events end up being the most fun! We only make changes based on safety.
Can we see the results after the race?
Yes, your team name, participant's names, and time - along with any photos we may have - will be posted. Please email us your photos for inclusion on the website.
Will there be any awards?
Yes. Just after 12:30 pm we will have an awards ceremony. We'll have awards for our top three teams, an award for best costume, as well as a raffle for a number of sponsor provided prizes. At least one teammate MUST be present to win.
How will the clues work?
At the beginning of the race, each team will be given a sheet of paper with twelve clues. Solve those clues then make your way to the checkpoints indicated by your answers and follow the instructions as to what to do at each one.
At some points you'll complete a challenge, at others take a picture, or you might need to figure out where to scavenge a certain item. All challenges can be completed by nearly anyone and you have the option of skipping one of the twelve clues. Strategy will play a big role in which to skip. Keep in mind, however, that getting all 12 checkpoints correct will not place you above a team getting only 11. Sometimes doing all 12 is a good insurance policy against mistakes. You may also have mandatory clues, which will be indicated on your clue sheet.
To be considered an official finisher, you must complete at least one checkpoint, though you will likely complete all or most over the course of the day.
Races may contain one or more Detours, which is a choice between two challenges. Choose the one you think will be fastest or most fun.
Once you cross the finish line, you are done. You are highly encouraged to check your photos prior to crossing the line... once you are in, there's no going back out!
Rankings are determined by who completes eleven or more checkpoints in the shortest amount of time.
Can you tell me a little bit more about what I can expect?
As a team you may have to work through an obstacle, ride a big wheel, build a human pyramid with strangers, blow a bubble larger than a softball, etc. You may be asked to return to the finish line at the end of the race with a specific item. You might have to solve puzzles like you might see in the newspaper (Where's Waldo, search a word, anagrams, Morse code, etc.) You might have to answer some questions about Mesa and what makes it unique. You might have to find a statue or other landmark and take a picture with by it. It's all fun stuff!
What is "Phone-a-Friend"?
The best help you can have is a person (we like to think of them as a Pit Crew) seated in front of an internet connection at home that you can call as necessary. You may need to figure out some unique local trivia, get directions, figure out song lyrics, etc. You can also use smartphones, library internet connections, GPS devices to get the answers to questions.