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Another big year expected for the Blue Nose

Youth numbers the only question mark in final week

By Andrew Wagstaff
Maritime Runner
May 16, 2017

HALIFAX – The labour dispute between the Nova Scotia government and its teachers during the past year has even had an impact on the Blue Nose Marathon.
A significant number of youth have registered for the event in recent years because of the Doctors Nova Scotia running program in the school, an extra-curricular activity that did not happen this year because of the labour action, according to Rod McCulloch, chairman of the event’s board of directors.
“Our numbers are pretty close to last year, however in the past there have always been a lot of youth register this week because it’s been their teachers collecting money, collecting and collecting and finally putting everybody’s name in,” said McCulloch. “We just don’t know how that’s going to work out.”

The 2017 Blue Nose Marathon is only days away, as events will kick off with the youth run and 5K on Saturday. Sunday’s events will include the full marathon, half marathon, 10K and marathon team relay.

Photo courtesy of Blue Nose Marathon

Youth registration was around 2,800 on Monday, compared to 4,200 at the same tine last year
Other than that question mark, he said the event is pretty much in line with last year’s numbers, and is expecting 11,500-12,000 people for the busy slate of events this weekend, kicking off with the 5K on Saturday afternoon, and following with the bulk of the races on Sunday, May 21.
Events like the charity challenge and marathon team relay have once again received strong support this year, as have events like the full marathon and 10K, which will once again be run on their alternate routes this year due to the continuing construction work on the MacDonald Bridge.
While the alternate routes have worked out well and been popular with some, McCulloch said they are expecting to have Dartmouth included again in 2018, assuming the bridge will be ready.
“We understand they are on track for that, so we fully expect to have the bridge back next year,” he said. “We think it’s important because we truly believe it’s a community event, and as a community event that includes Dartmouth.”
But this year, the Blue Nose will take place entirely on the Halifax peninsula, where organizers are once again expecting the electrifying atmosphere the event has become known for.
The event was started in 2004 by a handful of runners who had taken part in destination marathons like New York, Chicago, Washington and Paris, and wanted to take the same approach with a Halifax event, but with its own unique touch.
“We were much more concerned about the experience than about winning,” said McCulloch. “So, all the years we have focused on that. We work very hard to make sure everyone is treated as if they are an elite runner.”
For more information on the Blue Nose Marathon, visit the official website here .