The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

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April 18, 2013

Earth Day 10K/5K slated for Sunday

BECKLEY — Put a spring in your step and go for the green at Raleigh County Solid Waste Authority’s second annual “It’s Your World” Earth Day 10K/5K/5K Walk Race and Festival Sunday at the YMCA of Southern West Virginia’s Paul Cline Memorial Youth Sports Complex in Beckley.

This year, the festivities are expected to be larger than last year with more than 80 individuals already registered to run, twice the number that registered in 2012, said Sherrie Hunter, director of education for Raleigh County Solid Waste Authority.

“Our Solid Waste Authority is already so proactive about the environment, litter control and recycling, it was natural for us to develop a festival that focuses on being green and promoting healthy bodies and a healthy environment,” she said. “We hope this event will continue to grow in interest and become one of the premier special events for adults and children in Beckley.”

Participants can expect the best of last year’s festival plus a few extras.

For the first time, participants can choose to walk or run the new 5K portion of the race.

And new this year, kids and those young at heart can learn to shoot marbles with West Virginia’s own World Marble Champion Raymond Jarrell.

Also for the first time, elementary school children will participate in a fun run, said Hunter. Students who participate in the kindergarten and first grade, second and third grade, and fourth and fifth grade races will each receive a participation ribbon and the elementary school with the most students running will receive the traveling Earth Day “Go for the Green” trophy.

And back again by popular demand is Cow Chip Bingo. Attendees who purchase an item from the Sam’s Club concession will receive a ticket to select a bingo square. If the cow “fertilizes” your square, you could be one of three individuals to win $100, among other prizes.

And Cow Chip Bingo is not just fun, said Hunter. All proceeds from the concession stand go to the Children’s Miracle Network. And all proceeds from race registration will go right back into Raleigh County Schools through the solid waste school recycling  and education program.

Also at the event will be 15 festival booths focused on sustainability and creating a cleaner, greener world, she said.

“We are excited about having a fun day, from kids having a great time in the Fun Zone with Concord University students to our local athletes challenging themselves to beat their own time. This is a really good time to come out and celebrate the Earth and all the work you can do personally protect our environment.”

Registration for the races will be  from 10 a.m. to noon. The 10K race will begin at 12:30 p.m. and the 5K will begin at 2 p.m.

Registration fees are $20 and participants will receive a commemorative T-shirt.

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