Before the Boston Marathon, Karen Wambach and her husband Derik of Guernsey, Wyo., were on the fence about running the Bolder Boulder.
But once they watched, in horror, as the day's events unfolded, Wambach said she knew they had to run.
"The whole thing made me say 'I'm going to do it for Boston,'" she said.
In the aftermath of the two bombs that went off near the marathon's finish line, killing three and injuring more than 260, runners and spectators began posting on the Bolder Boulder Facebook page asking about increased race day security. A few worried that if it happened in Boston, it could happen again in Boulder.
That tone has shifted as the Bolder Boulder gets closer. Race director Cliff Bosley said overwhelmingly, runners are coming to Bolder to show their solidarity for the victims in Boston.
"I am going to run the Bolder Boulder because of what happened in Boston," Bosley said, echoing what he's heard from runners. "I'm not going to let these things that are occurring keep me from doing what I want to do."
Bosley's been talking with race directors around the country about how to make runners and spectators feel safe at their large-scale races. Other race directors have heard the same things, he said.
A common thread across the country is increased law enforcement at large running races, Bosley said. In Boulder, police officials say they'll be upping manpower along the race route and at the Folsom Field finish.
They've asked participants to be aware of their surroundings and to report anything suspicious, and have asked people to limit the number and size of backpacks they bring to the race. At Folsom Field, police will check bags and are allowing only soft-sided bags smaller than 12 inches by 12 inches by 12 inches.
"We want to reassure everyone that the Boulder and CU police departments and race organizers are working together to make this event as safe and enjoyable as possible," said Boulder Police Chief Mark Beckner in a statement.
Police officials would not disclose how many law enforcement personnel would be attending the race or other specific details about the security plan.
Wambach, who's son Dietrich will also run the race, said she understands the increased security measures. It happened after the September 11th terrorist attacks and the shoe bomber, too, she said, and they're necessary precautions.
Wambach will show her support for Boston by wearing a Boston Love T-shirt, created by Boston-based company Life is Good, after the bombings. Bosley said organizers will hold a moment of silence for the Boston Marathon bombing victims inside Folsom Field.
The Bolder Boulder also recruited Boston Athletic Association volunteer coordinator Elisabeth Worthing to be the official starter.
She's in charge of coordinating the 8,500 volunteers needed to make the marathon happen. In the aftermath of the bombings, the outpouring of support from the running community has been astounding, she said.
"It's been so important for Boston as we continue to heal," she said. "People have been sending love and encouragement from all corners of the globe. It's just been so meaningful."
Boulder Running Company's Henry Guzman was in his hotel room after finishing the marathon when the first bomb went off. It was his 101st marathon, and he said nothing will stop him from running the Bolder Boulder.
"I believe the community stands united and I believe you'll see that on race day," he said. "Everybody has a right to be afraid or scared, that's a natural instinct. But what overcomes that is strength and unity and also believing that we will not be intimidated or dictated to as far as what races we can run and where we can and cannot run."
Boulder runner Glenys De Wet left the Boston Marathon finish line 10 minutes before the bombs went off. She was there as a spectator, and said the shock didn't set in until two days after the race.
"For a while I kept hearing the bombs go off and kept remembering the fear in people's faces," she said.
She'll run the Bolder Boulder this Memorial Day, and then head back to Boston next year to run the marathon and show her support.
Boulder native Kelly Luck said she's been running the Bolder Boulder since she was 7-years-old. Now, she coaches other runners and works as a therapist. The 25-year-old was near the Boston Marathon finish line when the bombs went off, but luckily left unharmed.
"This is the opportunity to celebrate our running community," she said. "That's what the Bolder Boulder is for me at least. It's more than just a race. If we stay home, don't go run, it means they won."