Thursday, April 18, 2013
The Spring Prairie Fire Half-Marathon is just 16 days away and thousands of people are expected to fill downtown Wichita on the big day.
In light of the Boston bombings, race officials are taking a close look at the security plans for what is expected to be a huge event.
This is the first year there has been a Prairie Fire Spring Half-Marathon. It will start near the Hyatt Regency and so far about 2,000 runners are expected to run the half marathon alone. That doesn't include the 5k runners and all the spectators.
The half marathon will be held on May 5th, just 19 days after the Boston bombings.
"It changed the way we think about it obviously, I mean without question,” Prairie Fire Race Director Bob Hanson said.
Race Director Bob Hanson's first order of business was to meet with law enforcement to go over the security plan already in place.
"We have security down there the night before as we set up and we have security all night long. Obviously those things are expensive but they're necessary,” Hanson said.
Hanson says they also scrapped their plans to start the race with fireworks.
They made one other last minute change, a small addition to the official race T-shirt.
"We wanted to make a tribute to the runners and the people of Boston and we have that on the back of the shirt here,” Hanson said.
In addition to adding the date of the Boston bombings to the t-shirt, a group of local runners will be doing a preview run of the course this Saturday at 7 A.M. They will be taking donations for the Boston “One Fund” to help those most affected by the bombings.