If you're one of those folks who were planning to register late for this weekend's Gasparilla Distance Classic, time is running out.

About 1,000 spaces remain for Saturday's 5K run, walk and stroller roll that starts at the corner of Franklin and Brorein streets near the Tampa Convention Center.

Go here to register while there's still time.

Be warned: you'll be joined by 14,000 of your closest friends, so wear your steel-toes running shoes.

Tampa Bay's premier running event has signed up 30,000 racers this year -- a record. Registration is closed for the 8K, 15K, and half-marathon.

The prize purse offers $8,000 for the first American-born winner (eligible to represent the USA in future races).

If, like some of us (ahem), you only when you're being chased -- and then only by a bear or a really angry bee -- come on out to Bayshore Boulevard and cheer on the people who are doing all the work.

Races start around 9 a.m. The 5K and 15K races will run on Saturday; 8K and half-marathon race on Sunday.

The Gasparilla Distance Classic is the latest installment of the eight-week roster of festivals, parties and events we in Tampa Bay call Gasparilla Season.

Next up: Gasparilla Festival of the Arts Feb. 28 through March 1.