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NYRR INSTITUTES NEW NO-BAGGAGE POLICY TO EASE CONGESTION AT ING NEW YORK CITY MARATHON FINISH
No longer transporting baggage from start to finish
Policy instituted to provide higher-quality experience and to respond to runner feedback
Clothing to be donated to charity
NEW YORK, August 23, 2012—Beginning with this year’s ING New York City Marathon, under a new policy designed to ease finish-line congestion, runners will no longer check baggage at the start of the race, it was announced today by New York Road Runners officials. The plan, developed in close consultation with the City, will provide a significantly better and safer post-race experience. The policy also takes into account overwhelming feedback from runners, who asked NYRR to address the crowding after the finish.
Runners will now exit Central Park much sooner after crossing the finish line, where in the past they converged in a narrow, crowded area and walked nearly a mile to retrieve their checked baggage. The streamlined exit plan is expected to cut up to 30 minutes from the time between when the runners cross the finish line and when they leave Central Park.
“Our primary objective is to provide runners with the best possible and safest experience,” said NYRR president and CEO Mary Wittenberg. “The post-race walk-off has been too long and too congested, and was overwhelmingly the number-one complaint of our runners for years. We worked in close partnership with the City to develop the best solution that balances our responsibilities to runners with the impact on the surrounding neighborhoods.”
In order to minimize the inconvenience to runners, NYRR has invested in a number of enhancements, including:
· The Marathon Finish Line Poncho—a water-repellent, hooded, and fleece-lined garment to be handed out to every finisher
· Establishing NYRR “Call Home” stations so runners can communicate with friends and family
· A new and dedicated Family Reunion area near the runner exit
· Increasing the number of wave starts from three to four, reducing runner density along the course and at the finish line
In a shared commitment to giving back to the local community, NYRR will enter into a new partnership and initiative with New York/New Jersey Goodwill Industries and UPS to work with Wearable Collections (our partner in 2011) to collect the discarded clothing, much of which will be distributed and sold at Goodwill stores throughout the greater New York area. The sale of goods in Goodwill retail stores supports the Goodwill mission—getting people ready for and connected to jobs—and the clothing collected at the Marathon will contribute to that effort.
More about the new policy and what it means to the race participants can be found at NYCMarathon.org.
New York Road Runners was founded in 1958 when a small group of passionate runners vowed to bring running to the people. Over the past 54 years, NYRR has grown from a local running club to the world’s premier community running organization. NYRR’s mission is to empower everyone, of all ages and abilities—beginners and competitive athletes, the young and the elderly, adult professionals and underserved schoolchildren—to improve their health and well-being through the power of running and fitness.
NYRR’s races, community events, instruction and training resources, and youth programs give hundreds of thousands of people each year the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to start running and keep running for life. NYRR’s premier event, the famed ING New York City Marathon, attracts the world’s top pro runners and committed amateurs alike while also raising millions of dollars annually for charity and driving economic impact for the City. But NYRR is equally committed to the runners of tomorrow, passionately providing youth fitness programs that educate and inspire more than 100,000 kids in underserved communities in New York City, all 50 states, and around the world.
Headquartered in New York City, NYRR implements a unique nonprofit model that teams contributed and earned income to make all its efforts possible. To learn more, please visit www.nyrr.org.