Home » Blog » Archive

Archive for the ‘Mark Donovan’ Category

Thank You Utica!

July 19th, 2018

Thank you!


Here at the Boilermaker, we provide unique experiences to a very diverse audience. From our Fitness Mill Health & Wellness Expo to the various races like the Utica National Kid’s Run, the Carbone 5K, Sitrin Wheelchair Division and our crown jewel 15K presented by Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield to the Saranac Post-Race Party and our Boilermaker Urban Initiative sponsored by O’Brien & Gere and The Paige Group, to say that it “takes a village” would be an understatement.

On the heels of completing a successful 41st running of the Boilermaker, I would like to take this opportunity to thank that village.

The roles that our founding sponsors – the F.X. Matt Brewing Company and ECR International – play goes well beyond their historic nature. Throughout the year and certainly on race day, they both turn over their properties, their labor and in the brewery’s case, a huge amount of their product, to not only define our starting and finish lines, but to epitomize the spirit of Utica and the Mohawk Valley. We are forever grateful for their vision back in 1978 and their continuing support morfe than four decades later. Thank you!

Of course, the balance of our sponsors play a critical role as well. Our longtime and newer sponsors all recognize the importance of the Boilermaker for our region and are all eager to participate and keep the community spirit the Boilermaker radiates going. Thank you!

Mark Donovan 4-8-16 3

In terms of the planning and execution of Boilermaker Weekend, the Boilermaker staff, led by Race Director Jim Stasaitis, absolutely nailed it. Thank you!

Next would be the extensive volunteer organization led by strong committee directors who recruit, engage and direct thousands of “boots on the ground,” without whom we would not be able to deliver the experiences which our participants specifically come to Utica for. Thank you!

The collaborative efforts, seen and unseen, by the host of governmental agencies from the city, county, state and federal levels are essential and must be recognized. Whether it is the law enforcement aspects ensuring the safety and security of everyone in attendance or the public works entities preparing the infrastructure for a smooth course for our runners as well as traffic management and the sweeping up within a few short hours after events to give our growing city of Utica’s streets back to our citizens, they all do a fantastic job. Thank you!

Naturally, there are our participants, who this year hailed from 46 states and 17 countries. They are our raison d’être. For the past four decades, they have all continued to come back year in and year out, often times bringing new friends with them each time. Thank you!

Last, but in no way least, our community has to be acknowledged for the vital role it plays in Boilermaker Weekend. The people who come in from across the region and unite with the adjoining neighborhoods to line the course from Start to Finish are the “X” factor in this wonderful equation we call the Boilermaker. Your presence and the raw energy you impart to the runners help, in their own words, “carry them to the Finish”. This is your race. Thank you!

We have already begun the planning process for the 42nd running of the Boilermaker scheduled for July 14, 2019. Our collective goal is to work hard to enhance the Boilermaker experience for one and all. As you can see, we cannot and we do not, do it alone. Cheers and thanks to all who help us keep exceeding our participants’ expectations!


June 12th, 2018

Mark Donovan 4-8-16 3

On Tuesday, May 29th of this year, I walked into the Boilermaker HQ near the Finish Line here in Utica, NY to officially begin my new role as President of the Boilermaker organization. In the ensuing 10+ days, it has been a whirlwind of action as the calendar quickly turns toward “race day” which is only a scant 25 days away.

Taking a quick moment to reflect, I am obviously thankful for the support from the host of well wishers who have reached out to me. However, what has struck me the most is the passion I have witnessed and felt from everyone in and around the Boilermaker.

From the Boilermaker staff and volunteers who are in high gear making sure that all of the plans are in place for Boilermaker Weekend, to the perennial runner who took the time to come in and speak with me at length about his experiences and dedication to training new runners. Or the woman from Boston who, as a recent newlywed, asked her friends to consider donating to the Boilermaker as a wedding gift and stopped by to deliver those funds herself. I am very quickly getting my schooling on the magnitude of the passion that people bring to their unique Boilermaker experiences.

There is a saying that “you cannot teach passion“. As I shepherd the Boilermaker organization over the next phase of its journey, I am driven by the energy, generosity of spirit and the passion that our supporters have and selflessly share.

I look forward to seeing you at the Finish Line!