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Thoughts on Boilermaker 37

Well the 37th running of the Boilermaker Road Race is over, albeit with a touch of drama. While the spotlight shines brightly on Boilermaker Sunday, there are so many other success stories from the weekend of events. The 3 Mile Walk, Kid’s Run, Youth Olympics, Expo, Volunteer Party, Induction Ceremony and the Robert Channing/Classified Show. This year’s Expo, held at Mohawk Valley Community College, fielded the most vendors we have ever seen.
Disappointments, a few, the Community Mile Run was cancelled due to lack of public interest and the Shadow Run taking place in Kuwait not run because of extreme temperatures.
And then of course there are the events leading up to the Sunday 5:00 AM announcing that the races were a go that were well chronicled. Pulling the plug on this year’s Boilermaker would have stood as the hardest decision I have ever had to make. Clearly if I had to I would have received far fewer Christmas cards this year. I owe a special thanks to those who met with me on Saturday afternoon pre-race who offered some very wise council.
This year I was in the Unified Command Center, established last year after the Boston Marathon Bombings. While it was clearly not as much fun as being at the Start and Finish Lines (would you rather watch the game in person or on TV) I learned an incredible amount about the race. High-def cameras provided a unique perspective, while a real time Doppler radar with two hour forecasting capabilities was projected on a wall. In one room we had federal, state and local organizations working together for a common purpose of protecting our community and our runners. Sometimes out of great tragedy comes benefits we could not have imagined.
While I’d love to kick my feet up on the desk there is still much to do. I must write up areas where we struggled this year prior to it floating out of my brain only to come back and haunt us again next year. Also, thank you notes-in our hyper-fast, digital world a simple handwritten note has become more scarce, and so, more powerful.
Speaking of saying thank you, I send a very special one to all the volunteers who showed up in spite of the potential adverse weather. I knew the runners were coming and, God bless ya, you did too!
Post-race events include a series of awards ceremonies (School Challenge, Corporate Cup, Police/Fire Competition, Charity Bib Finale and various check presentations). Planning will begin for the 2nd annual Boolermaker Kid’s Run that will take place in October at Masonic Care Community.
Finally, we need to start getting our moving boxes packed up for our office move at the end of August.
West Utica, here we come!

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