Be Heeled!

Crowds turn out for 17th Street's annual Halloween celebration


20th Annual 17th Street High Heel Race

Dorothy is not in Kansas anymore. She’s busy fighting for her title as Washington, D.C.’s fastest high-heel runner, for the third consecutive year.

”I’m a runner,” says Ray Brown, winner of this year’s 20th annual 17th Street High Heel Race, who competed this year dressed as Oz’s heroine. ”There’s no training, it’s all natural.”

An overwhelmingly large crowd of gatherers watched as racers garbed in all manner of colors, costumes and coiffures, ran from JR.’s at Church Street three blocks to R Street.

Brown has run the race for the past eight years, but he isn’t too sure if Dorothy will join in next year. ”I’ll be 40, so I might have to retire,” Brown says. ”I’ll be clicking my heels all the way home, honey.”

The race included a wide range of costumes, from candy bars to politicians, including one who dressed up as a devil version of President George W. Bush (”As long as there is acts of perversion like this, and axes of evil, I will be there to take action,” he joked).

There were, however, no politicians in the way of whip-snapping Dee Dee, who came as a dominatrix. ”I don’t really care about winning — it’s more about dressing up and coming out here to have a good time,” she said.

Two friends, dressed as bananas, shared that sentiment, as they were only there to show off their costumes and didn’t participate in the race. Why bananas? ”Everybody loves fruit.”

2006 Race photos
by Todd Franson
2006 Race photos
by Michael Wichita
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