SPOKANE, Wash. – Is the bloom off of Bloomsday?
Turnout for Spokane’s huge road race continued a downward trend this year, with the lowest number of finishers since 1985.
The Spokesman-Review reports that preliminary estimates show 38,187 people crossed the Bloomsday finish line on Sunday, marking the seventh straight year that participation has declined.
That figure, which is subject to change because of counting errors and potential disqualifications, would represent a 32 percent decline from the 56,156 people who finished the 12-kilometer (7.46 mile) race in 1996, the all-time high.
Last year marked the first time the number of finishers dipped below 40,000 since 2004.
Founder Don Kardong says he expects Bloomsday’s popularity to surge again in coming years, once construction wraps up downtown and in Riverfront Park.