It was meant to be a merry marathon to celebrate all things kawaii in the Hello Kitty Run at Sentosa, celebrating the popular Sanrio character’s 40th birthday in a wholesome family outing.
Things turned sour however when things didn’t quite go to plan when the race started proper at 8am last Saturday.
Heavy rain poured all route, prompting the event organisers to put the race on hold till further notice — something that the participants saw as incompetent planning and lacking foresight. Runners complained about the lack of provided shelter, contingency planning and the fact that no raincoats or ponchos were included in their run pack, leaving everyone who paid $65 to take part in the race extremely cold, wet and probably downright miserable as well.
However, some runners actually enjoyed the experience of running the the heavy rain, if only to be awarded with a coveted race completion medal. But even that turned out badly.
It was total disorder at the medal and certificate collection area after the end of the race, according to various posts and complaints on the Hello Kitty Run Facebook page. Queues were clogged up and moved at a glacial pace due to lack of crowd control and small space. Allegedly, the event crew members and security personnel shouted, yelled at the participants — which shouldn’t come as a surprise given the nature of some overbearing Singaporeans when it comes to all things Hello Kitty.
Making things worse were probably the assholes who reportedly took more than one medal for themselves, creating a shortage of prizes for all. Some were spotted exacting “self-service” and grabbing as many medals as they can from boxes, and even non-registered participants receiving them without verification. Already, some of the medals are being sold online on shopping site Carousell at ridiculous prices.
The event organisers have made their apologies on Facebook and have announced that those who left without medals can still collect them some time soon. Participants are advised to hold on to their race bibs for verification and stay updated on the Hello Kitty Run Singapore Facebook page.