The City of Williams Lake invites the community to come out and enjoy Spring Sunday, April 7 for the annual Nutrition Fun Walk and Run.
A free event held every year, this five kilometre fun run starts at the Cariboo Memorial Recreational Complex at 11 a.m. and follows a gentle route through the residential neighbourhoods of the city. This year marks the 29th run since 1990 which began with 60 participants.
The City of Williams Lake’s recreational co-ordinator Denise Skarra said she and the city are excited to bring this lakecity tradition to the community once more. For the last 11 years, she’s been in charge of all adult programming and special events the City of Williams Lake offers.
“(The Nutrition Fun Walk and Run) is really a celebration of spring, healthy eating and active living,” Skarra said. “It’s a great chance for people to get out and enjoy, usually, a beautiful day and get active.”
Since the event’s founding, Skarra said, the event has grown to an average of more than 400 participants a year, weather permitting. She encourages participants to bring their children to the event, in strollers and otherwise, or their pets if they so wish.
This year she said that, unlike previous years, the city will not have a display of information about healthy eating due to the city’s dietitian being new to the job. Healthy food like oranges and the like, however, will be available at the finish line of the run.
Skarra said that, unless it suddenly snows, the city is predicting a turnout of over 300 this year, though of course, everyone is welcome to attend. Part of its appeal in her eyes is the ability to just drop in unregistered and take part in with ease.
“What I love is the families. I really love it when you see moms and dads, grandparents and grandkids, everybody’s out and they’ve gone for a stroll and I think that’s my favourite part of the whole event,” Skarra said.
Since the run’s founding, she’s noticed a steady trend away from it only attracting hardcore athletes to being a more family based event, something she’s been pleased to see.
On the nutritional side of things, the City is referring back to this year’s Nutrition Month campaign which was “Unlock the Potential of Food.” As such, they’re promoting the benefits of healthy eating for not only improved physical health but also it’s potential to unite people at meal times, holidays and celebrations, promoting positive mental health.
“(Nutrition) is the backbone of what recreation really is. It’s all about people being active, healthy and feeling good about life and themselves,” Skarra said.
The run goes over some hilly areas, Skarra said, that should provide a challenge and added that more enterprising runners might enjoy running it a second time for a full 10 km. Raffles and door prize draws will be held at 12 p.m. at the complex.
For more information about the Nutrition Fun Run Contact Recreation Services at (250) 398-7665.