A Colorful Parade: UMass Family Weekend Color Run

UMass Amherst’s Family Weekend came with a lot of color! Over 700 students, faculty, families and friends came together for a 1-mile-run on Friday, Oct. 21 on the Goodell Building Lawn from 4-6 p.m.

The one mile loop through campus was put on by the Student Alumni Association (SAA), and presented by T-Mobile, with the intent to make a “splash for philanthropy.” “We wanted to create a new event that would really get people excited to give back to the campus community, or the greater Amherst community,” said Katie Laveri, Vice President of Public Relations and Communications for SAA.

The cost to participate was $8 for students, or $10 for the general public. Part of these proceeds were divvied between different UMass Amherst scholarships and programs.

At the event, participants were allowed to choose where a portion of their ticket money went, as illuminated by putting a playground ball in different baskets listing components of the UMass campus: student affairs, scholarships, athletics, academics, and buildings and grounds.

Before the mile took place, event comers could be seen dancing to music, playing games, and jumping in the bounce house present during the duration of the event. “Our Traditions Team came up with the idea for a Color Run, because everyone loves those and they’re really fun. They worked really hard to build a proposal for SGA (Student Government Association), and got in touch with environmental to talk about what paint we could use,” said Laveri.

The paint used to spray the participants at the event were non-toxic and environmentally friendly.

The Color Mile was just the start to a weekend full of activities that came with Family Weekend 2016, including the Family Weekend Food Drive, talent show, and variety of tours and classes. The Student Alumni Association have put on events like this in the past, such as the Nearly-Naked Mile meant to build awareness for the community of homeless people living in Amherst. The next upcoming event with the Student Alumni Association is “Bears That Care,” a teddy bear drive that donates stuffed animals to different health and human services.

The Color Mile was encouraged by both the UMass Amherst Alumni Association and Student Alumni Association. These organizations are committed to coordinating accessible events to the best of their ability, and ask to be let known of anything related to their programming.

“It’s a way that we try to get alumni and students to engage with UMass, and give back to the Amherst community,” said Laveri.  

Some more photos of the Color Run:

All images courtesy of author.