Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The 2015 BolderBoulder

The big event here in Boulder for Memorial Day is the BoldBoulder, a 10K race through town that ends at the CU football stadium.  To say it is a popular event is an understatement.  It's in its 37th year, and in a city of about 103,000 the 2015 race attracted over 46,000 participants, from small children to senior citizens.

The race began at 6:55 Monday morning and a half hour later the first runner crossed the finish line.  From 7:30 to 11:30 "citizen racers" (non-professional runners)  streamed into the stadium for several hours to cross the finish line.  At 11:30 the course was cleared so that about 100 professional runners could complete the pro race.  By 12:15 all the runners were in and a Memorial Day ceremony began, watched by the crowd packed into the stadium

My friend, Inger, and I walked over to the stadium to watch the fun.  The racers come into the stadium on the right hand side, ran around the track, and crossed the finish line on the left, where the BolderBoulder banner was hanging.  The crowd watched and cheated them on as they finished their race.

What I loved about the event was how inclusive it was; everyone who wanted to could come and run or walk the course and have a great time doing it. Participants were divided into ninety different "waves," with each wave having a different start time.  The fastest runners began first, followed by waves of runners by speed, followed by "Joggers/walkers," followed by "Walkers."  Boulder is big running town, but the race is organized to encourage participation by all levels of runners.   Here's what the web site said:

"... the BolderBOULDER is the largest collection of elite runners outside of the Summer Games. But last year we welcomed over 55,000 runners of all shapes, sizes and speeds in more than 90 waves. That means whether you’re looking to walk, amble, trot, jog, or set a personal record, there’s a place for you."

There were runners/walkers of all shapes, sizes, ages, and speed.

I also loved how much fun everyone was having.  Again, from the web site:

"Boulder knows how to party like we know how to run. We understand that sometimes running is about suffering, but BolderBOULDER is about having a great time. The experience includes an incredible pre-race expo (with great sponsors and samples), live bands every quarter mile, food, cheering, craziness, costumes, more cheering, the world’s largest Memorial Day celebration and a post event Expo the likes of which any “normal” 10K can’t compete."

People came in fun costumes, especially tutus and capes...

...although there seemed to be no limit to the type of outfits people wore.  (How about these flamingo heads???)  

Some of them skipped for joy as they finished the race.  

Some of them held hands...

....and some walked arm in arm.

There were young kids helped by their moms, and older people helped by their friend. 

A few were pushed in their wheelchairs...


... and a few wheeled themselves into the stadium.

First responders were represented....

 were the Chick-fil-a cows.

I had such a great time watching all the "citizen runers" come in.   I was so inspired by the spirit of the day that I began dreaming of participating in the race myself next year.

At 11:30 the pro race began.  We watched on the big screen as the women's teams and then the men's team made their way through the city, and held our breath when the winners burst into the stadium.  That was fun to watch, also.

Then came the Memorial Day ceremony, really quite wonderful with its tribute to four honorees who served during WWII, the induction of new military recruits, the playing of the national anthem by an eighty year old veteran, and a military flyover.   But best of all was the sky diving, when seven divers entered the stadium carrying flags of the five branches of the armed services, the POW flag, and the flag of the United States.  Now that was cool!

1 comment:

  1. A wonderful event. Pictures are great, especially the last one!


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