More Bloomsday Photos
Yesterday, I posted about the race itself and the amazing athletes that are there for the competition. Today, I’d like to share some of the fun.
This man (in photo to the right and below) was the first costumed runner that we saw in the pack of 50,000 people.
I have to admire him. Besides the fact that he rocks the grass skirt, he did not throw off all that could encumber him and slow him down. He knew there was no way he could beat out the 8 Kenyans at the front of the pack, so he dressed up and made it fun!
That was the first man in costume, so we started looking for other “firsts.”
It wasn’t long before we saw a woman dressed as a princess in a pink crown and running shoes.
[click on any pic to embiggen]
The writing on the street in sidewalk chalk was done before the racers arrived. This message reads, “Go Nana!” 🙂
This woman made sure we knew that she was the “Good Witch of the North!” She hollered that as she ran past us.
And the leggings below? They made me smile. 🙂
You will find all ages running Bloomsday. The fastest runners are generally in the 20-40 year age range, but this next runner was breaking that mold — he was our first official “geezer runner” sighting. Color me impressed!
The course itself is 7.46 miles (12km) in length. There are bands scattered along the race course to entertain and encourage the people, and when the race is on residential streets, it is a party atmosphere with folks drinking coffee (or something!), playing music, and cheering everyone along the way. There was a band on the median where the bridge meets the exit to turn up Doomsday Hill that was warming up when we arrived at 8:45am to wait for the first racers, and they continued to rock out for the next 3+ hours.
This man was sitting about 20 yards down the hill from us. He started drumming when the first racer in a wheelchair rounded the corner off the bridge and started up the hill, and he kept steadily drumming the rest of the morning. I regret not getting a photograph of his kindly face.
There were runaway brides, a group of young men in togas, a blue man (and also, if my memory serves me correctly, a red man), and a rather odd-looking man making a fish-face with a fish hat on his head. There were women in pink t-shirts and men in pink knee-high stockings. (I think they were compression hosiery, and if so, I want to get a pair for myself!) We saw a pair of middle-aged women wearing faerie costumes. I’m told that back with the walkers — about 90 minutes behind this crowd — was a guy in a gorilla suit.
But this guy has a special story of dedication. He has run every single Bloomsday, making this his 36th year. The front of his shirt reads “Bloomsday perennial” and the back proudly claims, “I’ve run ’em all!”
He wasn’t the only person I observed wearing a shirt like this but he was the only one I managed to photograph.
I find it especially impressive that he finished the race somewhere between 60 minutes and 90 minutes. By tomorrow, the official times will be posted and if I knew his course number or his name, I could look up his time. What I do know is that even at my best fitness level, back in 1994, I couldn’t achieve that sort of finish time. My hat is off to you, unknown perennial runner!
Mickey Mouse and the StayPuft Marshmallow Man cheer on 50,000 people.