[Review] Pokémon Run Carnival 2018

Touted as Southeast Asia’s first ever Pokémon themed fun run, the Pokemon Run Carnival 2018 was back for its 2nd run at Marina Bay area on the 27th of January. Participants were able to relish in the glorious sights of the Supertree Grove, Flower Dome and Marina Barrage whilst brisk walking along the 5km route with photo cut outs and inflatable obstacles. With 4 different flag off timings, I started my run during the first wave at 4pm. The merciless sun shone down ceaselessly and it did not help that there was only a single water point in the entire course of the run.

Themed in Pokémon’s 4 different superpower types, the route landscape was decorated with inflatable obstacles at the Fire and Electric zones, coupled with experiential activities at the Water and Grass Zones. Runners were shot at with water guns, simulating the Pokémon water attacks at the Water Zone. Nearing the finish line at the Grass Zone, participants could take pictures with different Pokémon cut out mascots at the photo zone.

Besides the run, there was a Pokemon Run carnival with hands-on activities including 5 Carnival Games, Tretta machines, Stamp Rally and a Pokémon Bead Making corner. Participants were able to use the exclusive coupons issued in their race pack to redeem candy floss, popcorn and play the carnival games. However, there were long queues and waiting times for most of the booths ranged from 30 minutes to almost 2 hours. It did not help that the carnival grounds was extremely muddy due to the rain from the night before, resulting in muddy shoes and legs for many.

While there were external vendors selling foods like coconut, churros, ice cream, takoyaki and Japanese bread, these had to be purchased using a separate set of food coupons purchased at the carnival. Perhaps a better way would be for participants to be able to use the existing coupons given in the race pack to purchase all food and games, instead of liming the option to just snacks only.

We were able to catch a mass Pikachu Parade, where Pikachu mascots came out for greetings, and groove along to the newly choreographed Pikachu Dance show. Some lucky participants were also able to capture pictures with the Pikachu mascots during the meet and greet.

by Kirstin Sow