CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46) – The 2021 Around The Crown race will take place in six days, and all volunteers will be wearing a mask, and gloves at checkpoints according to the race director. There will also be concessions in place for people who don’t want to stand in the crowd at the start line due to COVID.
“Our race starts at 8,” says Brian Mister, race director for Around The Crown. “But we will have the start line open until 8:15. So, if you don’t want to be in that first corral, hold off to the side, wear a mask if you would like to.”
It’s been a long year for the racing community. In 2020, many of the races were held virtually due to the pandemic and now race organizers across the nation are canceling events or requiring runners to be fully vaccinated to participate.
“It’s hard to see when other races are having to make changes and knowing that Covid and Delta is very serious,” added Mister. “It’s hard to see it when you’re wanting everything to get back to normal being in whatever industry you are in.”
The first Around The Crown race was in 2019 and drew 5,000 runners. The race in 2020 was canceled, but they’re back for 2021.
“We want to make sure everyone gets back to running the way that is most safe for them and most comfortable for them,” said Mister.
“The run community here in Charlotte is a really tight-knit group,” says Corey Vaissere, as he got ready for a weekly run with the Heist Brewery Running Club. “We used to joke ‘you didn’t want to be the one person to give everyone else COVID’ when we started to return the run back.”
Not spreading the disease is something the running club has been serious about since hitting the streets once again as a group.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity for the community to come together and do it in a safe way,” added Vaissere
Not only will the volunteers be wearing masks, but organizers say if you are running and want to wear one too, go right ahead.
“We’re asking all runners to respect each other’s decisions and what they want to do,” says Mister. “Allow them to wear the mask the entire course if they would like to or not.”
The race will take place on September 5th, and there is still time to register.