CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Saturday's Beach to Bay Marathon will be run in hot and humid weather, even by South Texas standards.
The forecast hasn't changed preparations for the big race that Doug McBee has been director of for 32 years.
“Beach to Bay is always the third Saturday in May," he said. "It’s always hot. Not like it’s new to us."
This year's marathon will have the same number of water stations — 24 along the 26.2-mile course — as years past.
McBee is also enforcing a rule for the 200 or so athletes who will attempt to run the whole marathon by themselves.
All of them must be carrying a bottle of water at the starting line, and free Gatorade will be available to them at each of the five Emergency Medical Services stations along the course.
"The main thing we always try to stress — and we do every year — just for everybody to hydrate," McBee said. "Drink plenty of water."
Just in case the heat becomes too much for the marathoners or the two and six-member relay teams, McBee says there will be "a couple of hundred" nurses and "roughly four doctors" manning the EMS stations.
There will also be a sixth EMS station manned by the Navy on the section of the course that goes through Naval Air Station Corpus Christi.
The rest of the course has been patrolled heavily by the city's Public Works Department in recent days.
“The City of Corpus Christi is really excited to welcome the thousands of runners that are going to participate in Beach to Bay," Public Works Deputy Director Sarah Muñoz said of the estimated 8,000 runners set to take part.
Her department wants to eliminate any obstacles that could affect runner safety.
Muñoz estimates that a contractor the city hired will use a "record" number of orange cones to control traffic along with Corpus Christi police officers.
They've also mowed medians and tended to the plants in them and swept roads and made minor repairs where needed.
“We take a lot of pride in our facilities, and we are excited that we can show them to the many visitors and members of our community," Muñoz said.
McBee has taken notice of the city's efforts, and he thinks local runners and those from out of town or even the state will be impressed.
“Not only are they making it safe for the runners, but they’re making it beautiful to welcome people to our city," McBee said.
The city will have a few roads closed because of the Beach to Bay.
You can view that list here.