This Saturday marked the 10th anniversary of the Baltimore Running Festival. It’s a terrific event, and I’ve run either the half-marathon or the marathon relay in 6 of the last 10 years (and drove up to cheer the runners another year when I was sidelined by injury). It’s also a money-maker for the city, bringing an estimated $25 million in revenues into the city this year alone.

It’s also all about community (see Community, Baltimore style).

Except for the Hyatt Regency. While the rest of the city was welcoming the running community, the Hyatt was shutting its doors. Or, more specifically, its bathrooms.

The hotel hired security guards to stand at the bathroom doors and turn non-hotel-guests away. I’m a big Hyatt hotels fan. I’ve stayed at this one in the past, but I’m certainly never staying there again.

I understand the challenging logistics of 10,000 half-marathon runners with a start line across the street. It’s a challenge for all the hotels, restaurants, and other public spaces nearby. But instead of hiring guards, why not beef up your cleaning crews, put your best public-facing foot forward, welcome runners, and invest in toilet paper?

Photo by Sharon Mollerus (Flickr).