CAPE ELIZABETH, Maine — EDITOR'S NOTE: The video above is NEWS CENTER Maine's reporting from May, when organizers made the decision to make the 2021 race a virtual event.
A golden ticket famously entitles a person to a lifetime supply of chocolate from Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. But a TD Beach to Beacon 10K "green ticket" may be even more coveted, given how hard it can be to get a spot in the race.
Two lucky runners who registered for the 2021 TD Beach to Beacon Virtual 10K discovered a special surprise in their race kits. Carol Tittlerton of Cape Elizabeth and Carlos Moran of Bayonne, New Jersey, were the winners of "green tickets,” entitling them to free lifetime entry into the renowned TD Beach to Beacon 10K event.
The race is known for being particularly difficult for registration because of how quickly spots fill up.
“I was extremely surprised when I saw the Green Ticket in my race packet. I ran the race in 2019 and remember how tough it was to get in on registration day because it’s such a popular event,” Moran said. "This is a very special race for me because I proposed to my wife at Portland Head Light the day before I ran it in 2019. We can’t wait to get back up to Maine and participate in the TD Beach to Beacon 10K again.”
Carol Tittlerton, who has run the TD Beach to Beacon 10K every year since 2009, was also surprised and delighted.
“I really couldn’t believe it. I never win anything!” Tittlerton said. “I am just thrilled. I’m not a regular athlete and didn’t start running until I was in my forties, but it’s really fun."
Tittlerton added that she and her family make an event of the race every year, and she enjoys hearing the cheers of her fellow Cape Elizabeth residents along the route.
Both Moran and Tittlerton also received TD Beach to Beacon 10K branded merchandise and a $100 TD Bank gift card.
“We're excited that we were able to add a fun twist to this year’s virtual event as a way to thank our loyal running community for 'staying the course' with us through the challenges of the past two years," Larry Wold, president of TD Bank's Maine market, said. "Congratulations to our winners, Carol and Carlos, as we look forward to running with you both in person for many years to come.”
The 2021 TD Beach to Beacon 10K was a virtual event as a result of collaborative, ongoing discussions with health professionals and Cape Elizabeth town staff regarding the coronavirus pandemic.