Registration for the 11th annual New Albany Walking Classic opened this month and the event once again appears on its way to an early sellout, according to organizers.

Registration for the 11th annual New Albany Walking Classic opened this month and the event once again appears on its way to an early sellout, according to organizers.

"Last year we sold out five months ahead (of the race) and this year we're 125 percent ahead of where we were last year," said Kristin Ferguson, the Walking Classic's marketing director.

As of Feb. 23, 1,900 people had registered, according to Ferguson. Last year, the count was 700 near the end of February.

This year's race on Sunday, Sept. 13, also will be the largest yet, with registrations capped at 4,000, Ferguson said.

"We raised our entries to 4,000, up 500 from last year," she said.

The number of participants was increased due to demand, she said.

"We're trying to keep it a quality-versus-quantity event and I think we can do that with 4,000," Ferguson said.

The course, which winds through the New Albany Country Club communities, hasn't changed, but other aspects have been updated, she said.

Ferguson said the two-day health expo -- at which race packets could be picked up -- no longer is scheduled.

Ferguson said items given to walkers during the health expo instead would be given out at the finish line.

She said she is uncertain if any of the health screenings typically conducted at the expo would be available this year.

The procedure to pick up race packets also is changed.

Ferguson said walkers will have the week before the race to pick up packets at Second Sole, 1245 N. Hamilton Road in Gahanna. Pickup times will be from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday, Sept. 7-11, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12.

Packets will not be available Sept. 13, Ferguson said.

Other changes include the addition of a competitor division for which walkers would sign up at registration.

Walkers who register online by March 31 will pay $64.29 for the 10K, $69.57 for the 10K competitor division, $90.67 for the individual half marathon and $95.94 for the individual half marathon competitor division.

Those rates include processing fees.

Tickets for a new pre-event pasta dinner also are available on the website. The dinner, which costs $15, will be at the Courtyard by Marriott, 5211 Forest Drive, New Albany, from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12.