By James Ritchey
The trend of charity and fun running grows larger every year across the nation. One of the most popular styles of runs are “color runs,” runs in which participants are doused in colored powder in a psychedelic, kaleidoscopic, display. The powders used are all non-toxic, made from cornstarch, baking soda, and food dyes.
In color runs, there are no winners or prizes, and the event is not timed. Instead of a race, a color run is meant to be an enjoyable experience for all who participate. This creates a very unique experience compared to other runs, as there is no competition and the entire purpose is to enjoy the run itself.
To celebrate OctoberWest, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University hosted its own Color Run for the first time. Organized by the OctoberWest Committee, led by Yanova Boock, the Color Run became one of the three main on-campus events celebrating OctoberWest. The event took place on Saturday, Oct. 1, shortly after the OctoberWest airshow finished.
Many participants came directly from the airshow, eager to experience all that was offered during the weekend festivities. Several student groups were represented, including cadets from both Air Force and Army ROTC, Chi Delta Chi, and the OctoberWest Committee.
The course was approximately one mile long, starting from the Lower Hangar and winding through the DLC/library parking lot, Mingus Residence Halls, and the Village, before ending at the lower fields. About every 200 yards, a color station was set up. As runners passed through the color stations, volunteers threw colored powder on them with their hands and with shovels. Volunteers who manned each station did their best to make sure no one was left untouched by color.
By the finish line, most participants were sufficiently doused with different hues. In order to not overcrowd each color station and to ensure that each participant would be getting covered in color, participants were sent out in small groups, with about ten people starting the course every few minutes. As the event went on, several more students trickled in to participate, keeping a steady flow of participants going through the course.
After crossing the finish line, each participant was greeted with water and their own small packet of colored powder, so that they could join in with the experience for those coming from behind them. Due to the relatively short length of the course, participants were encouraged to run the course as many times as they wanted, getting more vibrantly colored with each run of the course.