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St. Luke's FitOne to provide in-person, virtual race options for 2021

Race organizers say the in-person option is initially limited to 6,350 participants to support safety during COVID-19.

BOISE, Idaho — St. Luke's FitOne announced that is offering two race options for 2021. Runners and walkers can choose either to participate in-person or virtually. Registration for both versions kicks off June 30. 

St. Luke's FitOne offers three race choices - a 5k, 10k and Half Marathon - that takes place in Boise every September. It is the largest one-day fitness event in Idaho and draws more than 12,000 participants every year. It also serves as an important fundraiser for St. Luke's Children's Hospital.

"The community's health and safety remain a top priority during COVID-19, and we recognize that people are eager to get back to some of the fun events they love, St. Luke's FitOne designed two options to match participants' comfort levels," said St. Luke's Director Eric Stride.

The in-person celebration will take place on Saturday, Sept. 25 in downtown Boise and will be a scaled-down version of past events. Organizers say the number of race day participants will be limited to 6,350 people to ensure proper health and safety protocols can remain in place to protect racers, volunteers, staff and sponsors. 

The registration totals are capped per distance: 5K at 3,400, 10K at 1,750 and half marathon at 1,200. Rolling start times and spaced-out waves will ensure people can maintain a safe physical distance.

If COVID-19 positivity rates and daily positive case numbers drop further by early September, FitOne will consider allowing additional in-person registrations. In the event the coronavirus begins to spread again in Idaho, race organizers may switch the race back to an all-virtual race, like in 2020.

The virtual version will allow runners and walkers to spread out across the community and run a course when it's convenient for them. Virtual participants can download the RaceJoy app, select the course they would like to walk or run, or make their own course. They need to complete their race sometime between Sept. 19 and 25.

All participants, volunteers, sponsors and staff will be required to wear a face covering at the start and finish lines. 

Each start wave will begin at separate times to allow the full use of the start line area and ensure participants can spread out. In addition, more buses and shuttles will be added to ensure physical distancing on the rides into downtown Boise. Other safety measures include prepacked race swag at the finish line, no finish festival and spectators will not be allowed to congregate along the racecourse. Instead, they're encouraged to download the RaceJoy app and virtually cheer on friends and loved ones.

"St. Luke's mission is to improve the health of people in the communities we serve. As Idaho's leading health care organization, we must do everything we can to model good prevention practices and at the same time demonstrate how we can still have fun, safely.  That's why we've worked in layers of protection," Stride said. "While the event will still look a little different this year, we're excited to bring back parts of race day that we all love, and hope people will want to celebrate together the work our community has done to reduce COVID-19 infections."

The St. Luke's FitOne Healthy Living Expo, which typically takes place the two days prior to race day, will not take place this year. Instead, race packets will be picked up at Ann Morrison Park. More information on packet pick-up and the race itself will be provided closer to the event.

Race registration will launch on June 30 with a special one-day only reduced price of $30 for any distance, including the half marathon. Kids 12 and under are free with a paid adult. Registration will be available online at FitOneBoise.org and prices will increase on July 1.

Money raised from entry fees supports St. Luke's Children's along with community health initiatives aimed at children and families. In the first eight years, more than $750,000 has been raised.