For the last 20 years, Onstage Systems has provided a wide range of sports event production services, including audio, visual, and staging solutions for the BMW Dallas Marathon. Started in 1971, the Dallas Marathon is a massive event that draws international attention from countries like Kenya, Russia, and Mexico. A stellar finish at the Dallas Marathon can qualify runners for the Boston Marathon, which makes this event a critical checkpoint for all professional runners looking to secure a spot at the World Marathon Majors.
Since the Dallas Marathon happens every winter, event production can be a challenge given the unexpected weather conditions. In 2013, the Dallas Marathon was canceled due to an ice storm known as ‘Icepocalypse 2013’ but of course, dedicated runners who prepared for months still came to Dallas to compete.
The weather during the 2019 marathon was perfect for our winter runners and even better for Onstage Systems. After months of planning and careful engineering, we were excited to test out an innovative new design we made exclusively for the BMW Dallas Marathon.
Custom Stage Designs for Special Events
Armed with new custom structures and engineering, the team at Onstage Systems came into the 2019 BMW Dallas Marathon ready to unveil a new design. During a months-long back-and-forth with Marathon coordinators, city officials, race coordinators, and structural engineers, Onstage Systems brought an elegant solution for such a simple yet intricate problem.
Onstage engineered a custom 44-foot wide by an 8-foot tall pedestrian bridge made with a combination of trussing and BilJax decking. Pedestrians could now cross the street without interfering with the runners. To spruce up our custom bridge, we added some hardware so marathon organizers could mount banners and help offset production costs by offering sponsorship space on the most prominent banners.
Creating The Dallas Marathon
From a sports event production standpoint, there are dozens of elements that need to be designed and built if you want to produce a successful marathon.
The focal point of any marathon is the start and finish line. Similar to previous Dallas Marathon events, we created a custom start line truss support structure complete with a giant video wall for the runners and spectators in the plaza. This year, our video wall was equipped with video switching and cameras that interfaced with the WFAA live broadcast.
In 2016, BMW signed on as the official partner of the annual race, changing the name from the Dallas Marathon to the BMW Dallas Marathon. To display their latest fleet of luxury vehicles, we designed a BMW display platform.
Additional structures included a custom VIP viewing platform, custom structures for the Front of House (FOH) MC and Tech World, a full audio system for the start/finish line, and lighting accents for the BMW display.
Celebrating Half a Century of Dallas Marathons
Next year, the Dallas Marathon will celebrate its 50th anniversary, making it the longest-running marathon in Texas. We may not be able to predict the weather for next year’s race, but one thing Onstage Systems can guarantee is a commitment to providing the Dallas Marathon with the highest level of event production with the pinnacle of audio, visual, lighting, and staging solutions.