Spring has sprung in Chicago. A terribly cold winter followed by a week of heat gave DMC the itch for a joyride at K1 Speed Go Karting in Addison, IL. K1 hosts high-speed electric go karting events in their large indoor facility. The idea for the event was tossed around a few months prior but had not been planned by anyone.
While talking with some of my colleagues, the topic of an April Activity Fund event came up, and I took the initiative of getting an event planned. The ability for any DMC employee to plan an event for their office has always been something I thought was interesting – and somewhat scary – but after the fact, it makes me want to host more events in the future.
Go karting was an easy choice primarily for the desire for acceleration, the need for speed if you will. The main selling point of these go-karts was that they have a max speed of 45 MPH and they don’t make you smell like gasoline. After planning with K1, we had a date, time, and general schedule for the event with about 20 people attending (including +1’s). With the closeness of the DMC community, everyone was able to make the trip by carpooling despite the long distance.
Once everyone had arrived and signed their safety waivers, K1 served food and drinks. As we ate, excitement grew. When everyone finished eating, K1 employees gave us a safety debrief on how to drive the karts and what to look out for and avoid when racing.
People began to size up their helmet liners/facemasks and their competition; in the end, it was still a race to be the best.
Everyone got their helmets, and half of the group was ready for their first race. Each racer was entitled to two races. The first race was the 12-lap qualifier: the goal was speed. Racers were given their ranking by fastest laps around the track. After both groups finished their first set of laps, their stats were used to make their race order for race two, the finals.
The finals were different from race one; this was position based. Racers now had to worry about taking over other racers and holding their position from other racers, all while driving around a track at high speeds. Each racer got their race stats via email for viewing – which showed metrics like individual lap speed, fastest lap, and data of the other racers as well to compare for bragging rights.
After many bumps, drifts, spinouts, and acceleration that puts a smile on your face, everyone involved had a blast.
For a potential return to K1, DMC has considered going to a drift night that focuses more on the precision of the driver as opposed to their ability to maneuver at high speeds. Some other potential activities at K1 included a Whirly Ball clone, an arcade, and various other mode on the go-kart track.
I think the positivity of this event will bring in those that came the first time and many more in the future. I loved being able to plan the event and bring something to DMC that everyone enjoyed. With this experience of planning, I’d like to put it towards the planning of another event that, hopefully, everyone enjoys even more.
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