My New Best Friends

It’s coming just like the Sun rising in the east we will hit the cap of 13,000 for the Boilermaker 15k (or the 4,000 cap for the 5k) and I’ll have a group of new best friends! Some will be people I know quite well, some passing acquaintances, some I’ve never met!
The stories my new best friends tell me will vary widely but will all eventually come to the same punch line ‘I want to run the Boilermaker and I missed the registration cap.’
One thing we decided after the establishment of the caps was communication through the media was key. The race was born and sustained through the sweat and tears; hopefully no blood, of the local runners; it was why they had first crack at registration this year when it opened.
The surge in registration was immediate and sustained. Days in February that might have seen a handful of applications were consistently tracking over a hundred a day. Tell someone there is the possibility they can’t have something and they will desire it more.
When it’s all said and done the statistics of on line vs. paper registrations, new runners vs. veterans, locals vs. out of towners will be interesting to study. Clearly we are in a new place with registration closed nearly two months earlier than last year, and I wonder what it portends for next years race; the 35th running. Numbers that end in 0’s and 5’s, anniversary years, tend to have even greater demand than normal years.
Here’s the deal; as good a job as the media and we via social media have done blaring out the latest and greatest numbers I have concerns. Too often I run into people who know me or might have seen me wearing a Boilermaker pin and I hear the dreaded words; ‘Oh yeah, I gotta get signed up for the race.’ Will this be the 13,001st person who wants to sign up?
I have two sons in college that have yet to sign up (I keep reminding the lads); how ironic if they want to be the first of my new best friends!

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