Run Wild 5k Celebrates Wilderness Act's 5Oth Anniversary

Published: September 18, 2014 | Read Time: 2 minutes

SUU’s Outdoor Engagement Center and the U.S. Forest Service are hosting “RUN WILD,” a 5k on September 20 celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act. Aiming to get everyone involved, the run will include a youth one-mile fun run at 9 a.m. The 5k will then begin at 9:30 a.m. at Bicentennial Park, with an Outdoor Fair to follow, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

David Whitmore, a junior outdoor rec major from Richfield, Utah, who is currently interning at the Outdoor Engagement Center and has been working to get the event ready, said their goal is simply to get people outside, having fun.

“The Wilderness Act is a major event to celebrate; it was so crucial in preserving wildlife,” said Whitmore of the inspiration behind the event.

“Prior to 1964, there was a lot of development of land, especially in the western United States. A lot of our precious wildlife and lands were being destroyed,” Whitmore explained. “They set aside lands to benefit future generations—we wanted to preserve them as they were. We now go into those lands as visitors where we are not the controlling or dominating factor.”

Again thinking of future generations, the RUN WILD 5k will benefit Iron County’s youngest residents; 100 percent of proceeds will be gifted to the Iron County School District.

“Our main goal is to celebrate and our second goal is to educate,” said Whitmore. “We want people to understand the benefits that we have living in Cedar City and the incredible opportunities that we have in the outdoors around us.”

The outdoor fair will consist of educational booths that give community members access to field experts on everything from how to start fires without matches to preventing wildfires. Smokey the Bear will be in attendance, and there will be live music as well as concessions. All events are free.

“A lot of people don’t understand the impact of the Wilderness Act. We want to shoe people the kind of benefits they gain from wilderness protection,” Whitmore said.

Everyone who registers for the race will receive a free t-shirt. Prizes will include Kindles, gifts cards, gear and equipment.

The RUN WILD 5k and Outdoor Fair is sponsored by SUU’s Outdoor Engagement Center and the U.S. Forest Service. The SUU Pacesetters club and other students helped Whitmore prepare for and advertise the event.

Race registration is $15 for adults and $10 for youth (14 years old or younger). 

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