A few notes from the week's running:
* The deadline for mail registration is coming up on Sunday. After Oct. 31, you won't be able to register by mail ... and the price will go from $25 to $30. In other words, there's a pretty good incentive to get your checkbook out NOW. Call 875-1283 for details.
* The Niagara Falls International Marathon might have had its best race ever last week, with more than 1,000 finishers. This sometimes gets overlooked because many American runners are a little intimidated by border regulations, but the event is catching on. Steve Bohan of Boston (N.Y., not Massachusetts) and Jill Gamble of Owen Sound, Ont., were the winners.
* Speaking of big turnouts, the race sponsored by the St. Mary's School for the Deaf had its biggest field ever. There were 220 finishers. Organizers really took advantage of an opening in the race calendar, as the race had the Saturday to itself. While the big field eliminated my chance at repeating as an age-group medalist, I did win the door prize of a very nice St. Mary's blanket. I'll be warm for the winter now.
* Sunday's running column has an interview with the organizers of the BobKat 5K, who say they've learned a lot after two years on the job. It's a fun story, I hold.
Now, the usual weekend roundup, courtesy of our friends at buffalorunners.com:
* Chestnut Ridge Challenge 10K, Chestnut Ridge Park Casino in Orchard Park, 9 a.m. Saturday. The runners who love a challenge will be here for this.
* Strides for Stewart 2 Benefit ECMC 5K, Veterans Park in Grand Island, 9 a.m. Saturday, 830-9515. It's a new one on the calendar.
* Jack O'Lantern Fall Classic 5K, Goat Island in Niagara Falls, 10 a.m. Saturday, 282-1228. There's a good chunk of prize money up for grabs here, and plenty of door prizes available as well. Plus, the mayor of Niagara Falls has promised to be there.
* Heritage 5K, Ellery Town Park in Greenhurst, 10 a.m. Saturday, 985-6712.
* Race to Benefit Laura Friend, 5K, 5375 Old Goodrich Road in Clarence, 10 a.m. Saturday, 741-9001. Another new one.
* Making Tracks for Families 5K, 2909 South Park Ave. in Lackawanna, 10 a.m. Sunday, 858-2671. This race started its life at the downtown baseball park, but moved to Lackawanna a couple of years ago. The cemetery is a little curvy as courses go, but it's still pretty.
--- Budd Bailey