HILLS, COSTUMES, SIGHTS: If you run enough 5Ks and halfers and marathons courses and routes can begin to meld a little, in your mind. Absolutely, you remember the fabulous medals distinctly, and who you ran with, and your time, and that your hamstring was acting up, or it rained, but, after a few months or years, trying to recall where you ran past that one vineyard or old barn or interesting fire station could take a minute or two of you scratching your chin in thought. There is, however, no chin-scratching or memory-reaching with the famous race that takes to the streets of San Francisco each May. It's Zappos.com Bay to Breakers, and whether it is the hills that stick in your mind (spoiler alert, San Francisco=ups and downs) or the beautiful idiosyncratic buildings that dot the beautiful idiosyncratic city or the costumes, so many costumes, of your co-participants, well... you remember, pretty clearly, how it all went down. And up, as stated: Hayes Street Hill is called by the Bay to Breakers organizers "one of the most notorious hills in all of racing." But that's no deterrent to the thousands who turn out for the 12K, which hoofs it, happily and with much dash and splash, on Sunday, May 17.
IT'S REALLY IN SAN FRANCISCO... as you likely know -- really very much -- so count on starting near the bay and ending at Ocean Beach (hence the name). Costumes are not, we repeat not, mandatory, but they're around. Expect get-ups from "I found this wig on the floor of my closet this morning" to "my group of friends and I have been planning our themed outfits for months." If you do gussy up, you obviously want to look your very darn best, because this race has been around for over a century. Make that a century and three years, so we do doff our hat, or our terrycloth headband, rather, to one of the great races of the West. A twist for 2015? Organizers are looking to break some records. One example given: "Most People to Take a Selfie with a Port-o-Potty." Have an idea for a creative record that could be achieved during the 12K? You can message the Bay-to-Breaker body here, and wait on the week-of announcement as to what the record shall be.