Bay to Breakers Kicks Off With Fun, and a Bit More Security
Tens of thousands ran, or stumbled, down the streets this morning as the 100th Bay to Breakers began. Ridouane Harroufi of Morocco crossed the finish line first at Ocean Beach 34 minutes and 26 seconds later, winning the race. Lineth Chepkurui of Kenya won the women’s division for the third time, finishing in 39 minutes, 12 seconds.
Then the revels began as runners in tutus, those in the nude, and folks decked out in just about anything began their run though 7.2 miles of San Francisco.
This year local residents were concerned about the growing problems of public urination, drunkenness, and nudity. But racers were penned in by many more gates than last year, which also led directly to the 1,200 port-a-potties strewn about the race instead of local lawns. “Sobering tents” were also set-up throughout the event, where nurses and EMTs could tend to the injured or those who had drank perhaps too much, reporter Caitlin Esch noted.
Zazzle, who organized the race this year, provided private security guards who patrolled the streets in popular stopping areas such as the panhandle. While the guards were supposed to stop people from drinking, many just tried to keep things calm.
“Honestly, we walked around and just asked people to chug their beers,” said private security guard Garnales Torres of Redwood City.
There were about 14 private guards in the eight block area, with dozens of police officers. Early in the morning they held the crowd back so that the runners could get through, and then let costumed revelers, even if they were unregistered, roam free as long as they didn’t block others.
While Zazzle had promised that the party would be over by noon, people were still milling around far past two o’clock. Street sweepers with cleaning trucks and a police escort did manage to clean up Fell Street and surrounding environs by about 1:30 p.m., pushing people out of the street.
It took almost an hour to clear just two blocks. Street sweepers from the Department of Public Works began shoveling and pushing trash into piles. From there street cleaning machines would circle around the blocks several times pushing the garbage into a giant mound in the middle, where it was shoveled into trucks. Even as people dressed as penguins, Giants players and Black Swans wandered through the cleaning, the trucks simply drove around them. Workers took down the fences keeping people out, and swept what little was left in the gutters. Finishing up the procession were police officers on bikes, RVs, and that most-hated San Francisco vehicle, the parking patrol.
Check out what people around the Bay are saying about this year’s race.Related