If you’re counting, that’s two Call Me Maybe references in as many blogs. You’re welcome.
This time I’m referring to a little less musical, a little more colorful reference. See yesterday, I went with a small group (a “team” if you will – which means we got to create a clever hash tag-related team name, plus saved us $5 each on the fee) to Candlestick Park in San Francisco to take part in one of the most rapidly-growing must-do’s in this country: The Color Run.
Let’s use the term “run” lightly and the term “color” heavily. We walked at least 85 percent of the course, which was a 3.1-mile concrete jungle in and around the Candlestick parking lot. But we came out looking like we went for a dip in a vat of syrup at the Skittles factory (if they actually have an entire factory solely dedicated to Skittle creation, please send the location and hours of operation to me at once).
The Color Run is a 5K charity run with the simple yet accurate tagline “the happiest 5K on the planet.” If you’re hearing about it for the first time, we’re talking about a normal run, where you get a number to pin to your shirt, a starting time and a finish line.
The main difference is that volunteers line up every three-quarters of a mile or so with buckets and bottles and bombs full of colored powder that they mercilessly chuck at you as you come through each of the four “color zones.”
On our run, we went through pink, then yellow, then blue, then orange, before stumbling upon attacks of purple, green, red and turquoise after crossing the finish line.
The Color Run isn’t timed – the only rule is to show up on time with a white t-shirt on. Needless to say, wearing something you don’t want to get dirty is a bad idea. Even if you managed to run around the color zones (I don’t know why you would want to…maybe you are just a soulless demon who hates color and love and happiness), there’s no way you’d avoid the masterful tie-dying that inevitably coats you at the post-race party.
Oh, did I forget to mention the post-race party? Oops.
The run itself was fantastic – my group had an amazing time, powder-bombing each other and giving out high fives like nobody’s business. But at the end, there was a stage with a DJ throwing all the extra color packets out into a mosh pit of rainbow-y, sweaty goodness.
You may be wondering if The Color Run is really worth all the hullaballoo. I mean, an entire blog dedicated to it??
You betcha. I’ve done the Bay to Breakers, which is unequaled in its epicness. But that’s all for fun. People get shmammered at six in the morning and dress in funny costumes. The Color Run, on the other hand is for charity, and culminates with the aforementioned post-race party.
Let me break down why you MUST do The Color Run if it comes to your area:
1. Nobody likes running. Usain Bolt doesn’t even like running. He’s just good at it.
2. Everybody likes tie-dye. It makes normal people into hippies in ten minutes or less.
3. Charity is good. Even if you don’t have multiple sins to atone for, charity is good.
So The Color Run is a brilliant combination of solutions to all three – the “race” isn’t timed, you end up a human rainbow, and your $50 ($55 if you don’t have friends, therefore can’t form a team) goes to charity.
And when you’re all done running, jogging, skipping or crawling through those color zones, you get to mosh for two hours just…because. I do have to warn you though. You will ingest floury substances through your mouth, nose, ears and eyes. But it’s all worth it.
I promise The Color Run didn’t ask me to write this, nor did I receive extra packets of chalky pink goodness to use at my discretion. I just had a really freakin’ awesome time at this event, and strongly encourage everyone to give it a shot.
But you have to promise me one thing – save the free packet of color you get upon registration until the mosh at the end. And when one of those booming, loud, techno/house/dubstep/whatever/aren’t those all the same things basically/club songs comes on…do what I did. Wait until the beat drops and then rip that packet open and look up!
You’ll be engulfed in a cloud of rainbow powder between a sea of extremely happy, awesome people jumping up and down to the pure joy of music and color.