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Splash of color

Lee Civic Center to host colorful run

March 18, 2014
Lehigh Acres Citizen

Get ready for one of the most imaginative, colorful, and perhaps messiest experiences you will ever have.

The Color Vibe 5K run is coming to the Lee Civic Center on Saturday, March 22, starting at 8 a.m., and it is designed not as a race, but rather a fun way to get in shape while getting every color thrown at you in the process.

And it benefits the Harry Chapin Food Bank.

Jeannie Brawn, manager at the Lee Civic Center, said even though the event was rescheduled from its original January date, the event has been immensely popular and is scheduled regularly.

"We have done it several times and we have had between 2,000 and 4,000 people run in it," Brawn said. "It's a wonderful event that everyone comes out for."

Color Vibe is a color blast run that is all about having fun and getting covered from top to toe with splashes of color pandemonium. All color is 100 percent safe, edible, biodegradable, and beautiful, and the company says the color is a cornstarch-based powder that can be washed off or vacuumed out of your car. As you sweat, the color stays with you.

Runners will get blasted with blue, yellow, pink, purple, and green as they run, (or walk) through the Color Vibe zones, which by the end of the run will awash you with rainbow colors.

Brawn said Color Vibe handles the clean-up, which is not a difficult process.

"When the sun hits it, it turns white and water takes it right away. We've had companies bring in street sweepers and a water truck and vacuum," Brawn said. "The only thing left is a little color and it's gone with the first rain."

Younger runners are encouraged to wear bandanas and sunglasses as they run, since the color could get into your eyes and lungs and cause discomfort to those who are sensitive, the company web site states.

Color Vibe is intended to be a fun run. Times are not recorded and no prizes awarded for coming in first. In fact, runners are typically sent off in five-minute waves to give the runners the maximum visual effect.

Brawn said people will even come in costume to run.

"I had a lady last time who wore a white wedding gown. At the end of the run it was multi-colored," Brawn said. "It's just good, clean fun."

The only "winner" will be the Harry Chapin Food Bank, which will partner with Color Vibe for the event.

Harry Chapin Food Bank's mission is to overcome hunger in Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties through education and by working with affiliated agencies in the procurement and distribution of food.

You can even buy some color if you're so inclined.

Brawn said the civic center plans to host another event in June called Neon Vibe, which will be held at night.

Volunteers are sought, and their main job is to throw colors at the participants and perform clean up after the event.

Runs in West Palm Beach and Daytona Beach have sold out, so now is the time to register.

Registration for the event is $45, which includes a T-shirt and a swag bag of goodies, and $50 the day of, provided it doesn't sell out.

Runners ages 7 and under are free, though they don't get a shirt.



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