The Delmar Dash is preparing to cross the finish line on its 20th race this year with some changes to help ease the registration process.
For the first time, participants can preregister instead of signing up the morning of the race. Day-of-race registration is still available but will cost $25 instead of $18 for non-Hudson Mohawk Road Racers Club members. The preregistration fees for HMRRC members is $15, and $18 for non-HMRRC members.
The kids' race, for children 12 and younger, costs $3 for registration.
We tried to think of something that would help relieve the congestion in the gym on race morning, said Tom Adams, the co-race director.
His wife and fellow co-director, Marcia Adams, said the changes would make the race more fun and keep people coming to the annual meet.
The Adams took over as directors of the race two years ago when former director Paul Turner of Delmar stepped down.
"Part of the challenge of taking over an established race is to make it different and more fun and something you want to came back to every year," Marcia said. "Fortunately for us, the Delmar Dash is something people want to come to anyway including the casual runner."
The Delmar Dash will be held April 6, beginning at 9 a.m.
Another first this year is the introduction of the One-Step-At-A-Time marathon, which is being sponsored by Spotlight Newspapers. The marathon can be done in conjunction with the children's race, which has been renamed the Delmar Dash Spotlight on Youth, in honor of the sponsorship.
The One-Step-At-A-Time marathon can be coupled with the children's quarter-mile or half-mile races, but is not mandatory.
The way it works, according to Marcia, is that participating children are asked to run 25.2 miles prior to April 6 race. Children are encouraged to run at least one mile a day, but no more than two. Parents or physical education teachers then initial the child's accomplishments in a daily log.