Color Me Rad 5k sweeps through Austin

Photo Credit: Alejandro Silveyra

Bombs of color will blanket parts of the East Austin sky “just for the hell of it” as the Color Me Rad 5K nationwide race hits the Travis County Expo Center this Saturday. 

Participants are encouraged to wear all white in preparation for the plumes of blue, green pink, purple and yellow cornstarch thrown at various points on the race route. By the end, their website claims racers will resemble a “kindergarten art project gone wrong.”

The idea for this unique 5K came after observing a long-standing Hindu holiday where colorful powder is used to celebrate the beginning of spring. “One year a bunch of our friends were at this festival [in Utah] and thought, ‘Hey this is awesome. Let’s combine it with a 5K run,’” said race director Adam Clark.

But it isn’t just the color that sets Color Me Rad apart. Unlike most 5Ks this race will not be timed, promoting camaraderie over competition. And according to Clark you don’t have to be physically fit or even like running to participate. “In Omaha, Nebraska there was a 97-year-old guy. This was his very first race ever, he was in a wheelchair and he had quit smoking three days before,” he said. “It took him two hours, but he was just wheeling himself along casually.”

In addition, Color Me Rad works closely with a number of local charities. For each event race directors are able to choose a charity they want to support. This race will be supporting the Austin Special Olympics. “It’s something I love raising money for. They’re also awesome about getting volunteers to help us out,” Clark said.

Online registration may be closed, but participants can still sign up at orientation or on the day of the race. Representatives will be on staff today from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Courtyard Marriot Austin of IH-35 North and on Saturday at the Travis County Expo Center. Ticket prices start at $45. For more information on the race visit www.colormerad.com

Interested in seeing what it’s all about? Longhorn Life photographer Alejandro Sylveria caught up with some San Antonio racers last weekend to see how they embraced this colorful display!