Damian Wells' bid to offer a free, no frills race to end the Steamboat Springs Running Series season nearly happened.
Instead, racers interested in taking part in Sunday's 15-kilometer or 5K trail runs will have to pay a mere $5. Wells apologized.
"My dream was to have something that was no cost," he said. "With insurance and other things my no frills race has turned into a $5 entry fee. There are no T-shirts. I'm hoping to appeal to some who don't run in other races."
The idea to have an end-of-season race followed by a potluck began when Wells' friend Heather Eller took over the running series this summer. A group of trail runners in town got together and decided a race needed to happen on the trails of Emerald Mountain.
Eller granted Wells the opportunity to put together a race. He obliged, though he is disappointed he won't get to race.
"For me, I'll got out that morning and get a run in and mark the course, so that enables me to run it," Wells said.
The 15K and 5K will begin behind Olympian Hall at the base of Howelsen Hill. Registration, which begins at 2:30 p.m., will be inside Olympian Hall. The 15K will take runners from one side of Emerald to the other and from the bottom to the top and back down again.
"It's a challenging 15K," Wells said. "It's the end of the season, so I figure those who sign up for 15K will have put in enough miles over the summer that it's not so hard it will kill them."
The 5K will go from Howelsen Hill toward Tree Haus and to the top of Howelsen before dropping down to the finish.
Both races will be on single track, two track or dirt road.
The 15K will begin at 3 p.m. Sunday. The 5K will start at 3:45 p.m. The staggered start was planned so runners will finish at the same time before the potluck in Olympian Hall.
Runners who register are encouraged to bring something to share, and the end-of-season awards will be handed out at the potluck. Winners from the Emerald Mountain run will be recognized, but there are no points or prizes awarded for this race.
"It's more of a final run of the season to get everyone together and recognize season-long accomplishments," Wells said.
-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org