What it takes to put on the Midnight Sun Run

FAIRBANKS, Alaska A race with close to 4,000 people takes a lot of preparation. Volunteers have been working around the clock to prepare for this year's Midnight Sun Run.

A race with close to 4 thousand people takes a lot of preparation. Volunteers have been working around the clock to prepare for this year's Midnight Sun Run.

"There's a lot that goes into this race, it is a very big job to put on a race of this size, it is also incredibly fulfilling to do this for the community," said Race Director Wendy Cloyd.

Cloyd says preparation starts in the fall, then they start designing the t-shirt, and then they start full force in January. "This race takes more than 6 months of preparation, so we start thinking about preparing in the fall even, we start thinking about the t-shirt design and what that's going to look like, and then once we kind of get that finalized, we start really hitting the road in January. So we start contacting sponsor, contacting the t-shirt company finalizing those designs, picking out the color, all of that stuff, so from January to now, is Midnight Sun Run, all day every day," said Cloyd.

On the day of the event, there is still a lot to do, with all of the people arriving to perform, setting up tents, and getting the refreshments for the runners ready. Cloyd says she has been on the planning committee for several years, but this is her first year as race director.

"It takes over 200 volunteers on race day just to make things go smoothly so that includes people helping at the start line, people helping along the course, and people helping at the finish line. Prior to that though, we even have people who help us put chips on the bibs, and help us just to keep things organized, so it definitely takes a mobilized volunteer army to make this happen," said Cloyd.

Volunteer Jaelynn Eccola says one of her favorite parts is meeting people from all over the world when they pick up their bibs.

"Last year when we volunteered there was this couple from Europe, and she had a backpack on and she had patches from all the places she had done runs in, and so she came all the way from Europe to Fairbanks to do this run, and it made me realize this really is something special, people hear about this, nobody gets the sunlight that we do, so to be a traveler and run everywhere and to want to come here and do this run, I think it was really really cool," said Eccola.

Bib pick up is happening Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Team Cutters at 2950 Airport Way, and on Race Day from 4 to 9 p.m.