Missouri runners join race for Boston, in 'Boston Strong Como' event
Runners, walkers, volunteers and supporters gathered in the rain at Stephens Lake Park Saturday morning for the 118th Boston Strong 5K run. The race began at 9:30 a.m. with a moment of silence, where participants raised their hands in a number-one sign to signify their support for Boston.
Casey Millburg organized the race with her friend Andrea Anderson as part of pavementrunner.com's global effort to raise awareness and support for Boston. Millburg said despite the weather, the event had a very successful turnout. "We would have been happy if we had five people out here but it looks like we have maybe thirty to thirty-five people out here," she said. "Yeah its raining, it's cold but everybody is really excited to be out here, and I think that speaks volumes about every participant we have here today."
Anderson said she loves organizing volunteer events like Boston Strong because she thinks they strengthen the community. "It's so neat to me, all these kinds of grassroots events," she said. "For a moment we come together as one community, and to do that to honor Boston, it really is a privilege."
The Boston Strong 5K race required no registration or fees to participate. Millburg said the number one priority in organizing the race was to make it as easy to participate in as possible. "Whether that's going to Wal-mart at 10:00 p.m. to buy orange cones or rolling out of bed early on an cold, rainy Saturday morning to go hang signs along the course, it's all about making it easy for the community to come out."
But, for veteran racers like Nancy Fritsch, turning out to the event was a sure thing. "This is my 267th race, I began running when I seventeen." she said. "Coming out to participate in Boston Strong meant a lot to me because I think it represents America coming together as one nation again." The race attracted local runners and walkers of all levels and ages, and even marathoners who have competed in Boston.
Supporters cheered "Boston Strong!" as runners crossed the finish line and collected their stickers for the event." Millburg and Anderson's live tweets on the event can be found at #bostonstrongcomo and find event photos on the facebook event page, Boston Strong CoMo5K.