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Running Wild

With a whole year to evaluate last year's foibles, a cleaner, prettier, more convenient Colfax Marathon race course — which sidesteps much of the 26-mile street the event was named for — awaits today's 6,000 runners. Marathon co-founder Jean Townsend says she and the rest of the event staff listened carefully to runner responses in order to plan for this year. What they heard sounds a lot like what my relay team would have told them if we hadn't bolted for brunch and Bloody Marys instead of filling out the survey after the race.

The porta-potty situation was out of control. As I waited in Aurora to start my 10K jaunt down Colfax, I was treated to the sights and smells of the only potty in the vicinity, plus the long line of pissed-off runners losing precious minutes on their time; that should be ancient history this year. The hills have been cut out completely, and instead of a straight line up Colfax, the marathon is a circle that begins and ends at City Park — nice for people who want to drive to the race and end up back at their cars, assuming they can find parking. There will be more variety in the landscape — and shade, Townsend says. But only the half-marathoners will be treated to the Colfax stretch I enjoyed last year, from the park east to Aurora and back — though they'll miss the Bluebird District.

New this year is a Charity Partner program, allowing runners to raise funds for one of 41 specific charities. Find details at Runners take their marks at 6 a.m.
Sun., May 18, 6 a.m., 2008


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