Today we are highlighting one of our favorite Milwaukee area running-related businesses-Running in the USA! Not only is Running in the USA a sponsor of the PNC Milwaukee Running Festival but they are also the presenting sponsor for the upcoming (and first ever) Milwaukee Running Day. RUSA is owned and managed by Bill and Mary Flaws of Waukesha, Wisconsin and they maintain the largest database of races, results and running clubs. We recently talked with Mary to find out a little about what it takes to keep Running in the USA, well, running. Read on:
What made you and Bill decide to start RUSA.com?
RUSA started as a little tiny database of races I was interested in doing. Way back in ancient times (before Google was invented), finding online information about races was challenging. It grew into a little website, and then slowly evolved into what it is today. We have never had a business plan or anything. It has just evolved on its own.
About how many people use your site? How has it grown over the years?
We get about 600,000 unique visitors per month. That’s about a 20 fold increase from 2006, which is as far back as our stats information goes.
How do you think races have changed/evolved since you began RUSA?
The biggest change we have seen is the rise in what we call ‘novelty runs’: color runs, mud runs, foam, bubbles, inflatable obstacles, glow, flavor, etc. etc. etc. I have never done one of these and don’t see them in my future but they are sprouting up everywhere.
What are some favorite races you’ve done personally?
Boston, and Big Sur take the top spots in the Large Well Known Marathon category. Icebreaker takes the top spot for most fun and best camaraderie category. Favorite ultra goes to Lean Horse 100 in South Dakota. And most interesting marathon would be the Moab Trail Marathon in Utah.
What are your goals for RUSA as it continues to grow?
We are in the process of building a completely new RUSA website, starting from scratch. New language, new database, new platform, etc. It’s the same directory but we will be adding a bunch of new and improved features. It will be faster, easier to use, and much friendlier on phones and tablets. We are really jazzed, working hard, and occasionally sleeping.
Thanks to Mary and Bill for all your support of our event and be sure to join us at Milwaukee Running Day on June 2nd!