Updated for 2023:
One problem that bedevils Race Directors is managing the swag that gets ordered and distributed. Order too much? Big problem with money wasted and my basement fills with shirts. Order too little? Also a big problem, with unhappy runners.
The problem exists because we have to order weeks in August, but don’t know how many will try to sign up after that, and don’t really know what the no-show rate will be since that is largely dependent on the weather.
Our solution: After taking stock of our registrations in mid-August, we order our shirts. We know there will be some no-shows based on injuries and competing plans (which we account for when we set the price of the race).
If you registered by September 1st, you get a shirt when you pick up your bib.
For the later registrants, we hand them out at the finish line to those that didn’t get based on what we have left. We do our best to have enough but no-show rates are inconsistent so we make no promises.
And if you know a better system for managing this kind of stuff, by all means let us know, and give us a hand with it next year. I will give you double my salary as Race Director.