Experience the Broad Street Run

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For one day, runners hoped for the best weather and it was a beautiful day for a marathon. Yes, the temperatures was just right as the 38th annual Blue Cross Broad Street Run got underway in Northeast Philadelphia. It was at Broad and Olney Streets where it all began around 8:00 a.m. Sunday morning.

PHILA: Sorry, no walkers allowed! Well, they are, but if you fall too far behind the runners you will be escorted to the sidewalks, where hundreds of spectators are cheering on more than 44,000 runners. This is a primarily run only race, with lots of awesome perks including prize money and a chance to have your name placed on a trophy.

For one day, runners hoped for the best weather and it was a beautiful day for a marathon. Yes, the temperatures was just right, as the 38th annual Blue Cross Broad Street Run got underway in Northeast Philadelphia. It was at Broad and Olney Streets where it all began around 8:00 a.m. Sunday morning.

Organized by the Blue Cross to raise funds to fight cancer, the Broad Street run is an annual marathon race that’s been happening every year since 1980. So, how big is the race anyway? In 1980, the race made its first debut with only 1,454 male runners and 122 female runners. In 1989 it had 7,000 runners, in 2013 it had over 32,000, and today, participation is over 44,000. The Borad Street Run – big deal huh? It’s been dubbed the biggest 10K race in the U.S., bringing runners, families, and their friends from all around the country.

It has grown so big that since 2013, registration of single runners (though not teams) has been handled by lottery just weeks prior to the start of the race. Only 86% are accepted on average to run down Broad Street. This year, that brings more than 44,000 runners who lined up at the start line to begin the 10 mile trek to the Philadelphia Naval Yard in S. Philadelphia.

BCBSR Race Course sign 2017 24x48

I don’t think a lot of people realize how large and how big of a deal this race really is to not only those who run in it but also to the city of Philadelphia. Major roadways and sidewalks are shut down including the I95 on and off ramps to Broad Street. Hundreds of extra police and city workers are needed to shut down the roads and hundreds of police officers are needed to be stationed along the route in the event of incidents and medical emergencies. We can’t help but mention the volunteers, all of whom make this event possible by setting up tents, manning gates, cheering runners, giving out food packets, water, information, and handling on-site registrations, etc.

For the runners, they have the best perks but for the travelers – well that’s another story. The best perks about those traveling to the event was that you could go to the finish line area which was at the Phila Navy Yard and park for free at Lincoln Financial field, where the trek to the Navy Yard was only a short distance away. The only real down side to the free parking at Lincoln Financial Field was if you wanted to get to the start line. To do that, you had to jump on SEPTA to get there and you had to make sure you got on SEPTA by 6:30 a.m., because if you didn’t then you would have missed the start of the race.”

Delaware Newsline covered the finish line, where thousands were about to come into the finish line. Mayor Jim Keeney (Phil) helped hold the finish line banner, and the Phillie Phanatic was keeping everyone entertained. There were lots of foods and drinks for spectators, but limited seating, but I don’t think anyone was sitting when the runners started to come through anyway.

So do you think you have what it takes to run the Broad Street Run – for ten miles? It is unknown if there were any injuries or incidents, but I can tell you that the first male finisher, Dominic Korrir, from White Plains, Md grabbed one of our photographers arms as he collapsed after coming through the finish line. Luckily, medics were standing behind the photographer and came around to his aide. They had to wheel him off in a wheelchair, but they say he is going to be okay.

Some of the first finishers were:

Wheel Chair:
Tony Nogueira from Glen Ridge, NJ. With a finish time of 38:50:30
Askale Merachi from Bronx, NY. With a finish time of 53:48:19

Runners:
Dominic Korrir from White Plains, NJ. with a finish time of 47:37:53
Askale Merachi from Bronx, NY. With a finish time of 53:48:19

Were you in the Broad Street Run? Why did you join the run? Some ran to try to break the previous year’s time, some ran for the challenge, others for personal reasons, but whatever your reason for joining the Broad Street Run, there’s one thing for sure, the Broad street Run sure is an experience like no other!

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