Like salmon returning to their original spawning waters, costumed fools will once again descend in Juneau.
The 24th annual Only Fools Run at Midnight run will take place at 11:59 p.m. Saturday at Centennial Hall. This year's event will feature a 5-kilometer run as well as a 1-mile run, walk or wheelchair race.
The event benefits Southeast Alaska Independent Living, or SAIL, and Outdoor Recreation and Community Access, also known as ORCA. Both organizations provide services to the disabled community in Juneau.
"The money raised in Juneau stays in Juneau," said race director Tristan Knutson-Lombardo. "It's a great fundraiser. It all stays here to help people with disabilities be independent."
The race is among the most popular events on the Juneau running calendar and frequently attracts several hundred people.
While several show up to clock a solid time in the 5K, the vast majority of people come to dress up and run. Costumes are encouraged and there will be prizes for the most imaginative get-ups.
"We typically have 300-350 people that preregister for the race and several more that register the night of the race," Knutson-Lombardo said.
There will be prizes for best adult and youth costumes as well as best centipede, awarded to a group of five or more runners dressed up together, and a special prize award to SAIL and ORCA's favorite costumes.
Judging will take place from 11-11:30 p.m. at Centennial Hall with the results announced following the race.
The prizes range from Alaska Airlines and Wings of Alaska tickets, Mount Roberts Tramway tickets, Nugget Alaskan Outfitter gift certificates, a Gastineau Guiding photo safari tour as well as coffee tokens, clothes and hats.
The first 500 people to register will receive glow-in-the-dark T-shirts and water bottles will be given to the next 125 runners, Lombardo-Knutson said.
The race will start and end at Centennial Hall. The 1-mile race will turnaround at the Federal Building while the 5K will go along the Highlands and Glacier Highway before coming back to Centennial Hall.
Today is the last day for preregistration while race-day registration opens at 10:30 p.m. Saturday at Centennial Hall.