To experience springtime in Maine is to witness an eruption of floral colors—but this year, the flowers will be getting a bit of extra help due to the first annual Color Run, scheduled to be held at the Calais Middle High School and Washington County Community College campuses on April 30th.
The run will begin with an obstacle course put together by the students of CMHS, WCCC, and the St. Croix Regional Technical Center before winding for close to five kilometers around each campus. Runners will travel along the Johnny Shelton nature trail before arriving at the finish where stations of color will await them. Three color stations—featuring blue for participants from Calais, orange for those supporting Eastport, and purple for those representing Baileyville—will be established at three points throughout the race, with staff and students from each school hurling the color of the runner’s choosing at them. Extra color packets can be purchased for $2.00 each. A Kodak Moment photo of each runner will be taken by volunteers from WCCC at the end of the run to capture their colorful experience in the best way possible.
Each runner will pay a registration fee, with all generated fees going toward three scholarships (one for each school) for $500 for a student to attend WCCC. The fee for an individual to register is $30. For a team of three to register, it’s $25 per member if they register before the day of the race. If a school is sending ten or more students, the cost lowers to $15. All registrants that wait until the day of the race will need to pay $30 to participate.
The Color Run is paid for by funds from the MELMAC grant, which contributed a total of $42,000 to the SCRTC and CMHS schools. “Once we met the requirements for spending with the grants, we had funds left over. We wanted to do something to raise funds for a scholarship,” guidance counselor Janice Rice explains.
As this is the first such event that the campuses have held, Rice isn’t entirely sure what to expect—other than a lot of color being tossed about. “If we get one hundred people, it would be awesome. Regardless of what happens, it’s going to be fun.”
The color is composed of cornstarch mixed with an edible food coloring, and it is entirely non-toxic. Once all runners have finished, there will be a “powder battle” at the end. Trophies will be given to the youngest and oldest participants as well as the largest team.
“The collaboration has been really good,” Rice said. “This community supports the schools so much. People keep stepping up—you just have to ask and people will come forward.”