The first costumed runner in Bay to Breakers was Captain Kidd who ran the race in costume in 1940. Though Captain Kidd finished the race in last place, he gave birth to a movement.

The trend became increasingly popular in 1992, when Bay to Breakers held its first costume competition. Those wearing certain costumes have created traditions all their own, like the group dressed as salmon who “swim upstream” and run the race backwards each year.