LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Security was out in full force during Thunder over Louisville after the Boston bombings; thousands packed Louisville's Water Front Park Saturday to watch the air show and fire works.
Amid growing security concerns in light of the tragedy in Boston, police from dozens of agencies helped keep everyone safe and now we're gearing up for the next event, the Derby Marathon and Mini Marathon this Saturday.
This will be the 40th year for the Kentucky Derby Mini Marathon and the 12th year of the Marathon. The event has grown to 18,000 runners hitting the streets of downtown Louisville for the 26 mile marathon and the 13 mile mini-marathon.
In terms of distance, this is the largest Derby-related event; Thunder is the largest in terms of attendance.
With such a wide area for the marathon, there are changes being made, but part of the Louisville layout actually helps when it comes to safety.
"We're unique in that our start and finish are very close to each other so it's very easy to focus our assets in those areas," said KDF Vice President Matt Gibson.
New this year, police canines will be on site, where runners will be required to leave personal items.
"The start and the finish are both swept by canine units, including the equipment truck and to ensure safety, they are guarded during the time you are gone," said KDF President Mike Berry.
Some run with a back pack on filled with either weights or a water bottle or other supplies inside, but new this year, those have to be left behind: back packs and strollers aren't allowed, but water bottle belts are okay.
Spectators are largely unaffected, but when it comes to noise for runners, iPods are allowed, but boom boxes are not.
In years past, some unregistered runners would casually run part of the trail, but that's being shut down this year.
"If you are running in the race, and you do not have your bib on, you will be removed from the race," Berry said.
Extra officers and triage stations are also being added to make sure everyone crosses the finish line without incident.
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