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Bay to Breakers 2013: Not Without Incident, Full of Color

| May 20, 2013
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For many participants, what didn’t happen at the Bay to Breakers this year mattered more than what did happen: no bombs went off.

Security staff kept a watchful eye over the racers. (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

Security staff kept a watchful eye over the racers. (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

The bombings at the Boston Marathon raised fears that copy-cat attackers would target San Francisco’s highest-profile footrace.

Race organizers and local authorities beefed up security. The measures included extra surveillance cameras, cops in civilian attire, and restrictions on backpacks. And no terrorists appeared.

That doesn’t mean nothing happened.

Ethiopa’s Tolossa Gedefa Fufi crossed the finish line first, and Burundi’s Diane Nukuri-Johnson won the women’s division.

Costumes varied wildly at the event. (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

Costumes varied wildly at the event. (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

One man died: David Hamzeh fell from a roof during a Bay to Breakers party Sunday afternoon, police and hospital officials  told Bay City News.

Also police arrested 21 people for  public intoxication, one for possession of a firearm and one for robbery,  police spokesman Officer Albie Esparza said.

Some racers looked downright alien. (Lauren Benichou)

Some racers looked downright alien. (Lauren Benichou)

But as usual, more of the participants seemed to be competing for zaniest costume.

“I am a failed super hero,” Shannon Waters told KQED’s Lauren Benichou. “My name is the visible woman. I am here with blind as a batman, the green flashlight and the inappropriate tickler.”

Runners dressed in lucha libre costumes (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

Runners dressed in lucha libre costumes (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

And some thought the extra security was not necessary.

“I think the best safety we have is if [we] are highly aware,” said Eric Peper. “I understand the paradox for public safety but I think at the same time that’s a risk we all live [with]… I [would] rather live in a world where I have more freedom than being constricted.

Tutus proved popular at this year's event. (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

Tutus proved popular at this year’s event, as usual. (Lauren Benichou/KQED)

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