The New York City marathon is just about the runners, it's also about the support team.
The numbers are staggering: 43,000 runners and 6,000 volunteers -- like Al Eford, a former long distance runner, who's been helping the marathon leg in Harlem with crowd control for more than thirty years.
Elford also supplies music for the runners. He describes the song selection as "certain songs that give them that push, because that area is considered the wall."
Among his choices are "Rocky" and "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now".
And Philip Santora, the Senior Manager for Volunteers and Community Outreach for the ING New York City Marathon, points out that "each community through which the runners come has its own flavor."
Santora points out it's not too late to add your flavor. "There's still time to get on the website, www.nyrr.org, just click on the marathon site and look at the opportunities and sign yourself up."
Some of the volunteer opportunities: "There are water stations at each mile," said Santora. "Folks can come there and hand out the gatorade and the water and cheer on the folks.There's lots to do at the finish, receiving people [and] there's medal distribution."
It's also not too late to run in the marathon, which takes place November 7th, as long as you're doing so for a particular charity.
Richard Hulnick, Director of Business Development, for the ING New York City Marathon, noted, "Team for Kids, which is the New York Road Runners' charity, still has guaranteed entries and you can certainly apply."
Runners this year are expected to raise a record amount of money for different charities. Hulnick estimates "we're gonna raise 26.2 million dollars this year, which is a million dollars a mile."
Elford says volunteering has its own rewards and considers it a family affair. "As a matter of fact I'm grooming my grandson, to take over," he said.