Sorry my Memorial Day post is so delayed. I actually sat down last Tuesday and typed the most amazing entry about sitting on the sidelines of the 34th Bolder Boulder and watching over 50,000 wheelers, runners and walkers come together in one of the largest Memorial Day gatherings in the world. The post was complete with fabulous photos, hysterical captions, snark about Boulder, tears of pride, images of anguish, patriotism (with matching photo of the American Flag being carried by a group of Marines) and of course the best creative writing of my life but unfortunately I added one too many photos and the entire entry was deleted off the blog. Two hours of my best work wadded up and thrown into the virtual garbage can that holds all of WordPresses randomly deleted files.
So here’s a second attempt to recreate Memorial Day Part 1. PS, Part 2 involves me, Zippy the cat and a snake jumping around the backyard in the world’s most aggressive game of hot-snake…get it? Hot-potato but with a snake? Any hoo.
The Bolder Boulder 10K road race claims to be the largest road race in North America where all participants are timed, and potentially the largest road race in the world. Of course Atlanta’s Peachtree Road Race has over 70,000 timed runners, and, since the 70’s, has held the title for being the largest road race in the world so I’m not sure what to think of these Bolder Boulder FYIs but what I can confirm is that the 2012 Bolder Boulder was the largest 10K I saw on Memorial Day and there is no arguing that it is, without a doubt, the largest 10K in the Country of Boulder.
Fortunately (for me) the race runs through my neighborhood so I was able to load my cruiser bike with a camp chair and a bag of pastries and roll a couple hundred yards down the road for all the excitement to come to me. Unlike the Peachtree, The Bolder Boulder encourages costumes and crazy antics from its runners and supporters. And because the race is directed through the downtown neighborhoods, those who aren’t running get to participate from their own front yards… by handing out bacon, and beer, and offering street performances like garage bands, belly dancing, spiritual chanting, pole dancing on street signs (yes, pole dancing), water slides for the runners to cool off, spray hoses, and of course tons of heckling. It really is a great time to be in Boulder.
In my 6+ years in Boulder I’ve run the Bolder Boulder three times. I was going to run this year but decided against purchasing a number because I’ve had to waste too many entry fees due to being out of town. As much as I loved the sideline show I was sorry to miss the fun at the end of the race where everyone gathers in Folsom Stadium to wait for the professional runners to arrive…the pros start in the last wave so everyone gets a chance to cheer as they come by. Even though Boulder is a bit of an anti-government / anti-military/ anti-anything in uniform kind of community (funny considering it hosts one of the largest Memorial Day gatherings in the US) the crowd ERUPTS when the Marines bring the American Flag into the stadium and do their pushups before crossing the finish line. Of course by this time all of the amateur racers have been replenishing nutrition with free beer and energy bars so emotions are definitely amped by the time the real celebration kicks off.
I’ll wrap up with heartfelt gratitude for everyone who participates in the Bolder Boulder, for the service men and women we celebrate on Memorial Day, and for The Denver Post for its sense of humor and fabulous photos!
Happy Summer Kickoff!!!