Lets say, just for a moment, that last years Boston marathon bombing went down exactly as it looked like it happened on TV. Two men, IN THE CROWD, detonated bombs that caused mayhem and terror across the city. Okay, you with me so far? Good.
So, you could understand new regulations for crowd control, for bags and luggage and all that right? Right?
The Boston Athletic Association has changed the rules for runners. You would expect a little tightening of things if you accept the official version of the bombing, but a little tightening is not what’s happened.
The Boston Athletic Association would make the TSA proud with their list of new rules and regulations for this year’s marathon. They stop short of full body searches, but just barely.
Information on Baggage and Allowable Items on Race Day
TO 2014 BOSTON MARATHON PARTICIPANTS
As your training continues, we want to make you aware of several changes for the 2014 Boston Marathon in the areas of baggage, gear check, and allowable and prohibited items. The Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.) is working in partnership with public safety officials from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the eight cities and towns along the Boston Marathon course to make your race day experience safe and enjoyable.
New for this year, there will be a “no bags” policy for the 2014 Boston Marathon. We want to make you aware – with appropriate time so you can plan – of several adjustments. Please arrive early for the event and be prepared for security screening.
Please continue reading for more information on the following items:
- Baggage Policy, Gear Check, and Bus Loading for Official Participants
- Bib Number and Bib Pick-up Information
- Allowable and Prohibited Items for Official Participants
- Finish Area Information
- Rules for Unauthorized Participants
For the 2014 Boston Marathon, with an increased field size and for everyone’s safety, we will work with public safety officials to ensure that we preserve the exceptional race day experience that makes the Boston Marathon an icon in the world of sport while making race day safe and enjoyable for all.
We greatly appreciate your cooperation, patience, and understanding as we work with public safety officials to enforce these policies. Please visit www.baa.org for more race day information. We will post updated information as it becomes available.
We wish you the best of luck as your training continues.
BAGGAGE POLICY, GEAR CHECK, AND BUS LOADING FOR OFFICIAL PARTICIPANTS
The B.A.A. asks official participants to comply with a new policy for 2014. No bags will be allowed on buses from Boston to Hopkinton, and bags will not be transported from Hopkinton back to Boston. Bags will not be allowed in certain areas at or near the start in Hopkinton, at or near the finish in Boston, or along the course. At the conclusion of the race and new for 2014, the B.A.A. will provide you with a Heatsheet® Warmth Retention Cape for warmth. SEE IMAGE BELOW
A gear check opportunity on Boston Common will be available on the morning of the Boston Marathon, allowing official participants to have a change of clothing (shoes, pants, shirt, jacket) at the conclusion of the race. The bag to be used for this purpose will be provided at Number Pick-up by the B.A.A. Only this B.A.A.-provided, clear, plastic bag can be used for this purpose. No other bags will be accepted. Any items that you would like to have with you at the conclusion of the race must be placed inside the clear, plastic bag that the B.A.A. will provide for you. You must leave this clear, plastic bag at the gear check area on Boston Common prior to boarding the B.A.A. shuttle bus to the start in Hopkinton. Please be aware that the gear check area on Boston Common is approximately one half mile from the exit of the finish area at Arlington Street.
Bus loading on race day will take place the on Tremont Street side of Boston Common, between Boylston and Park streets. In order to effectively transport all participants from Boston to Hopkinton, official participants will load buses by waves. More information on the timing of bus loading will be forthcoming.
BIB NUMBER AND BIB PICK-UP INFORMATION
New for the 2014 Boston Marathon, we are requiring that all participants claim their own bib number at the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo during normal expo hours. Friends or family will not be allowed to claim your bib number for you. We want to communicate this change to you early so that you may plan accordingly. The official bib that is assigned to you by the B.A.A. for the 2014 Boston Marathon must be visible at all times while on/in B.A.A. buses and other B.A.A. vehicles; entering, and in, the Athletes’ Village in Hopkinton; in the start area corrals and start area; on the race course; and in the finish area in Boston. Your bib number may not be altered or copied in any way and may not be transferred to another participant or another B.A.A. event.
ALLOWABLE AND PROHIBITED ITEMS FOR OFFICIAL PARTICIPANTS
Allowable items for official participants: You may carry the following items with you on race day. Any such items are subject to inspection at any time.
- Fanny pack (no larger than 5 inches x 15 inches x 5 inches) to carry food, nutritional products, medicine, identification, cell phone, home/hotel key or other similar and necessary small items
- Standard manufactured “fuel belt” (bottles must be one liter or smaller)
- The use of headphones is discouraged, but permitted
Please note: Additional layers of clothing may be worn on B.A.A. shuttle buses and in Hopkinton for warmth before the race. Clothing that will not be worn during the race must be discarded in Hopkinton and will be donated to a local charitable organization.
Food, beverages, and portable toilets will be available at Athletes’ Village before the start of the race.
Prohibited items for official participants: The following items are prohibited from entering any Marathon venue, including the course, Athletes’ Village near the start in Hopkinton, start or finish area, and all officially-sanctioned Marathon events:
- Backpacks, any similar item carried over the shoulder, or handbags of any size
- Glass containers
- Any container capable of carrying more than 1 liter of liquid
- Strollers, including baby strollers
- Suitcases & rolling bags
- Personal hydration system products (such as CamelBak®, Thor®, etc)
- Weight vests or any sort of vest with pockets (Note: lightweight running vests are allowable)
- Costumes covering the face or any non-form fitting, bulky outfits extending beyond the perimeter of the body
- Props (including sporting equipment and military and fire/gear and signs or flags larger than 11 inches x 17 inches)
- Any item larger than 5 inches x 15 inches x 5 inches
Please note: security at each location will have the authority to disallow other products or materials that it deems inappropriate.
Additional rules for official participants:
Official B.A.A.-assigned bib numbers for the 2014 Boston Marathon must be visible at all times while on official B.A.A. shuttle buses and other vehicles, entering and within the Athletes’ Village in Hopkinton, in the start corrals and start area, and on the race course. Officially issued bib numbers may not be altered or copied in any way, and individuals who do alter or manipulate their bib number will not be allowed to participate.
FINISH AREA INFORMATION
There will be a few changes to the finish area for the Boston Marathon. The B.A.A. will offer the opportunity to exit the secure finish area at three locations prior to Arlington Street. More information on these exit areas will be forthcoming. Participants who choose NOT to check gear at Boston Common will have the option of leaving the secure finish area early to meet with family and friends.
The order of our finish area services has been modified. Finishers will receive:
- Heatsheet® Warmth Retention Cape
- Fluid replacement (Poland Spring Water and Gatorade)
If you decide to take advantage of the gear check opportunity on Boston Common, you will need to walk approximately one half mile to the gear check area to retrieve your bag.
Next week, you will receive another email from the B.A.A., requesting from you whether or not you intend to take advantage of the gear check opportunity on Boston Common on the morning of the race. We wanted to provide you with this information prior to receiving this email next week.
RULES FOR UNAUTHORIZED PARTICIPANTS
For the safety of our participants, spectators, and partners, public safety officials and the B.A.A. strictly prohibit unofficial participation, and those in violation will be subject to interdiction. Those who are not officially registered in the Boston Marathon will not be allowed to participate. We ask official participants to discourage family and friends who are not officially registered participants from entering the course in any manner.
We are aware that many people want to participate in some way in this year’s Boston Marathon as a display of support, but we ask that those who are not official participants to refrain from entering the course for the safety of the runners and themselves. There are several other opportunities which enable a show of support for the Boston Marathon, including the B.A.A. 5K on April 19, the Boston Marathon World Run, attending the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo, volunteering, or spectating.
Anyone on the course for any distance who has not been assigned, or is not displaying, an officially issued bib number from the B.A.A. is subject to interdiction. The B.A.A. reserves the right to remove any person from the course who is not displaying an official bib that has been assigned by the B.A.A. Similarly, units or groups such as military ruck-marchers and cyclists, which have sometimes joined on course, will not be allowed to participate. (source)
So, no wheeling the toddlers in strollers, no dressing as a giant fish or any other odd creature to raise money for charitable causes, no banners or decent sized flags…
If this is what’s happening to the runners, I can’t wait to see what law enforcement comes up with for the spectators. Maybe make everyone turn up naked and then have them full body X-rayed to be on the safe side?
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Contributed by Chris Carrington of The Daily Sheeple.
Chris Carrington is a writer, researcher and lecturer with a background in science, technology and environmental studies. Chris is an editor for The Daily Sheeple. Wake the flock up!