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Events motivate, get students active

One of Drake’s biggest events is Relays — especially our chaotic, colorful street painting. It’s the one day a year where students can start out clean and fresh and end it covered in paint. Or so we thought.

For the first year, Des Moines will be included in a nation-wide event called The Color Run. It’s a five-kilometer run through Des Moines for all ages. There’s no time limit or first place, so speed isn’t a concern. All that matters is getting as colorful as possible.

Runners start out in a white shirt with their running number. As they finish each kilometer, volunteers, staff and sponsors bombard them with colored powder — yellow, orange, pink, or blue. The finish line’s a final frenzy of color with the whole group spraying new arrivals every fifteen minutes.

An annual race, the Color Run has been a success all across the country. This year it’ll take place in 50 U.S. cities and is starting a tour in Australia. Sophomore Taylor Rookaird is trying the run this year because of its success.

“I was interested in doing it because my friends had said good things about it -— that it was cool and they enjoyed the experience,” Rookaird said.

It’s even more than a fun race. Each city selects its own charity to partner with the color run. Des Moines has chosen Variety – The Children’s Charity, a program dedicated to helping underprivileged, at-risk and special needs children.

If interested in helping this charity, there’s another running event dedicated to Variety. Since 2007, Hy-Vee has hosted its annual triathlon here in Des Moines with international success. In 2008, it was the final qualifier for the Olympic Games in Beijing. The next year a Canadian won the race in a five-way sprint to the finish. This year was also a success. Held over this past weekend, the event raised $750,000 for Variety.

Unfortunately, if interested in the Hy-Vee Triathlon you will need to wait a bit, but the Color Run has been scheduled for Oct. 6 and is still open for registration. Individuals can register for the race at the price of $55 or as a team of four or more at $50 a person. A part of the registration fee is a donation to Variety, and it also buys a shirt, a bag of Color, race number, sweatband and “a bag of goodies.”

If interested, go to http://thecolorrun.com/des-moines/.

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