It's over a century old and as outlandish as ever: The Bay to Breakers 12K sets out in San Francisco on Sunday, May 18. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
IT'S ALONG ABOUT SEPTEMBER... when a lot of people who lean outlandish start to think about their Halloween party costumes. Will their be a full head mask? Will I wear tights? Should I go topical or timeless? In short, the usual questions are asked. But when does a person begin to consider their Bay to Breakers costume? Given that the famous San Francisco 12K happens around the third week in May, we'll say that the pondering starts, oh... around Thanksgiving. Maybe earlier, even, because consider these three facts.
ONE? Participants who choose to dress up for this costume-y run, which heads from The Embarcadero on the San Francisco Bay to the Pacific Ocean across town, bring it. We mean, bring. It. With full on italics and periods for emphasis. The outfits are outlandish or thought-provoking or a little shocking or plenty playful or all of the above. Two? Many, many cameras are trained on the runners, far more than you're usual Halloween bash. So there's that. You'll want to look great. And three? It almost goes without saying, but you'll need to run twelve kilometers, or walk, or move from start to finish, while bedecked in something wild. So, yeah, your costume can't be a hundred pounds probably, or impede you in any way. Hence why the planning starts early, early, early.
DATE AND DETAILS: The Sunday, May 18 race, which is 102 -- no typo there, it recently marked its centennial -- is "the oldest consecutively run footrace in the world." But here's the true headline this year: "For the first time, 10% of your Bay to Breakers registration fee goes to support people in need." Knowing how many people join in, this is most excellent news. To find out how you can play a part, and to get your gear and get-up together, jog this way, hill lover (you love hills right? Because San Francisco has a few...).