A record 347 runners entered the 12th annual Boca Grande 5K Fun Run Sunday.
It was the second-straight record entry total for the Lee County Parks & Recreation race timed by Zoomers Race Club, which listed 325 runners a year ago.
Race day dawned on a fog-wrapped Gasparilla Island. The run circles island beach views, including Charlotte Harbor off Whidden's Marina, Gasparilla Inn & Club and winds up on palm-lined Gilchrist Avenue before the Banyan Street finish line.
And they’re off. The 12th Boca Grande Fun run begins with a record 347 runners in the field.
It was a good day to run with at 68 degrees with a cool cloud cover although fog and humidity combined for treacherous footing in places.
Some ran shirtless, and at least one ran shoeless. The barefoot runner was Karen McLean, who broke her toe two days earlier on a China cabinet while letting the dog out.
The grand prize, valued at $1,500, is a two-person, two-night stay, including meals and golf, at the historic Gasparilla Inn and Club.
Awards are given to the first-, second- and third-place male and female winners in each age division: 9-under, 10-14, 15-19, 20-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69, 70-74, 75-plus and wheelchair. Special awards will be given for the male and female overall winner, master, grandmaster and senior grandmaster winners.
The Gasparilla Gazette will publish complete times for all runners in the Feb. 28 edition after they are made official.