Alumni to run for fun—and a good cause

First-ever 5K Fun Run at Alumni Weekend to support student scholarships

The Fun Run course offers unforgettable views and many lovely places to pause for a rest break.

Just how fast can a Banana Slug really go?  

Find out for yourself at the first-ever Alumni Weekend “Fun Run,” which kicks off on Saturday, April 29, at 8:30 a.m.

UC Santa Cruz’s famous forests and meadows will be the venue for this beautiful and challenging 5K stomp across the campus in support of student scholarships. What better way to simultaneously help students as well as earn those yummy picnic items and craft brews at the Artisanal Carry-Out Lunch and Alumni Brewer and Vintner Reception later?  

The run is a joint organizational effort involving UC Santa Cruz’s Office of Physical Education, Recreation and Sports (OPERS) as well as the campus Financial Aid Office.

The scenic race will take place on a loop course that is shaped, vaguely, like a giant and rather lumpy banana slug. Runners are likely to see a few deer along the way. They might even see an actual banana slug or two, hiding out in the forest.

Runners will jog, stop, sprint, and saunter past all colleges on the heavily wooded 2,000-acre campus and will huff and puff alongside many major nostalgic and picturesque spots.

Clint Angus, interim competitive sports and youth camp supervisor at UC Santa Cruz, talked about the spirit of cooperation that led to this informal race. “We thought this would be a good opportunity (for OPERs and the Financial Aid Office) to work together, so Intramural Sports volunteered in helping to organize a race course, track the participants' times, and provide staff,” Angus said.

He also mentioned that the event is open to alumni as well as UC Santa Cruz students who take part in intramural sports. “It’s one of those occasions where our alums and current students can participate in the same event.”

And, by the way, if you think the 5K sounds a bit too intense, you may also opt for a 3K route that is family friendly.

Lockers will be available for all runners—though remember to bring your own lock—and, not to fear, there will be water and photo stations, shuttle service, and refreshments at OPERS.

This event is also open to the Santa Cruz community.  Registration is required for this event; if advance interest is any indication, the Fun Run will be popular, so participants should sign up early to guarantee a spot. Race fees are  $90 for a family or group of four, $50 for a family or group of two, $30 for individual alumni racers, and $15 for students (ID required at check-in).