COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho --- The Coeur d’Alene 2017 Ironman will be the last full race here, and it will change to a half race next year.
Both the Coeur d’Alene Chamber of Commerce and Ironman leaders announced this week that 2017 would be the last year of the full race.
“I think the loss of the full is a big loss to the community,” said former mayor Sandi Bloem.
Hosting the full race was expensive, hurt some businesses and was tiring to locals said chamber leaders.
“Why mess with success? It was a very, very successful event in a lot of ways,” said Bloem.
Bloem first became mayor in 2001 and was there when regional leaders and Ironman started the talks about hosting an event in Coeur d’Alene. And the first Ironman race in Coeur d’Alene was two years later. Bloem said one of the biggest positive changes she saw was in the community.
“I believe that was bigger in impact than the financial or anything else. Financial impact was huge. But I think that sense of community it built is going to be a huge loss for our area,” said Bloem.
She said the event also brought exposure to Coeur d’Alene and helped it grow as a tourist destination, and that it will not be as successful as a half race.
“If it were me, I would keep the full, move it to June where it always was,” said Bloem.