Runners to assemble at Portland waterfront for memorial jog

PORTLAND, Ore.  — Oregon runners will assemble on Portland's waterfront on Wednesday evening to pay tribute to the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings.

The Portland Triathlon Club has invited the community to take part in a run to "support and remember our athletic friends, families and fellow competitors" in Boston.

Runners will meet at 6:30 p.m. at the East Bank Esplanade by the Vera Katz statue for one loop around the waterfront.

Meanwhile, a second community run has been set for 5:45 p.m. Tuesday. That run will meet at the Foot Traffic store in Northeast Portland.

The gestures in response to the tragedy were two of many in Oregon, which has a rich track and field history and a tight-knit community of runners — including 351 residents who took part in Monday's Boston Marathon.

Gov. John Kitzhaber asked that flags on all state buildings be flown at half-staff, and Mayor Charlie Hales ordered the same for Portland municipal buildings.

In Southwest Portland, Julie Allen paused during her run Tuesday briefly to talk about the bombings which killed three people, including an 8-year-old boy, and injured more than 170.

"It's like you can't not think about it out here today," she said. "I'm by no means a marathon runner, but you can't help but feel a connection."

The PTC has asked those participating in Wednesday night's run along the Willamette River to wear black bands on their shirts or black arm warmers, and Boston Marathon gear if possible.

"Let's make this thing huge and show how tied together we are as a community from the best running state in the country. Power is in numbers and healing is in community," the PTC board of directors said in the open invitation.