Bix 7: ‘This race brings people together’

Michelle Juehring is a busy woman.

The director of the Quad-City Times Bix 7 race is busy doing dozens of big and small jobs associated with the 48th annual race, which is Saturday, July 30.

“I’m exhausted, but I feel great. We’re very excited about this,” she said with a laugh during a recent interview with the QCBJ.

Ms. Juehring jokes that she is in her “third first year” as race director.

The joke has a serious quality to it because her three years at the race helm have been three years of incredible challenges because of COVID-19. The first year, 2020, was hit by the global pandemic and the race went all virtual with still more than 3,000 runners participating. The second year also had its challenges with the race returning to in-person, but still offering a virtual running option. And this year’s race is approaching a more normal model, but still offering a virtual option.

The 2022 race also is offering a first-time event – a team racing option called the Caesar’s Sportsbook Team Challenge. The inaugural competition will put 40 teams (each made up of five members) racing against each other in the seven-mile course.

The race director hopes this new event will offer a new level of excitement to Bix 7.

Another task creating a lot of excitement these days is keeping up with the many participants registering for the Bix 7. As of mid-July, the race had 98% of the number of registrants it had as compared to this time last year. That number will very likely climb. She adds that the last few days before the race is often a hectic time because of the many additional runners who sign up at the last minute.

Ms. Juehring does not give specific race registration numbers. However, the Bix 7 did have 13,111 people registered to run on race day in 2019 – the last year before the pandemic.

“This race is great because it brings people together,” she added.

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Bix weekend will include music and more

The Quad-City Times Bix 7 weekend will include its namesake road race as well as music, food and drinks across Davenport.

Here is a schedule of many of those events:

  • The Heights of the Era music festival; 3-10:30 p.m., Friday, July 29; at Lindsay Park, Village of East Davenport. 
  • Several Bix Block parties will be Friday and Saturday, July 29-30, and will include live music, food and drink specials. They include: The Bix Mix, which will be on Third Street between Ripley and Harrison streets. It begins at 3 p.m. Friday and 5:30 p.m. Saturday. The Finish-Line Fest will be at 218 Iowa St. and begin at 10 a.m. Saturday. The Best Dam Bix Party will be at 420 E. Second St. and begin at 8 p.m. Saturday. The River Music Experience @ 5 will be from 5 -7 p.m., Saturday, at the RME Courtyard, 129 Main St.
  • The road races will include the Bix 7 starting at 8 a.m. Saturday. Other racing events will include: The Genesis Sports Medicine Brady Street Sprints at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 28; the Arconic Jr. Bix at 6 p.m. Friday; and the Prairie Farms Quick Bix beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday. This year’s Bix 7 will also have the Break the Tape event. In this event, two runners will be given a head start in the race. If they beat the elite runners to the finish line, they will each get $2,500. Those Break the Tape runners will be Olivia Moore and Sam Russell. This event was once known as the Beat the Elite competition.

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