Local event organizers have come up with a new way to view part of the Trail of Lights before the lights are turned off for another year. The first “Light to Unite” glow run/bike/walk will be held from 5-8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 2, at three parks in Great Bend.
Bikers and runners will start at Veterans Memorial Park, at the north end by the cannon, while walkers will start at the south entrance of Brit Spaugh Park, off 19th and Williams St. Everyone will finish in the Barton County courthouse square, where members of Be Well Barton County will be serving hot chocolate, said Julie Smith, director of the United Way of Central Kansas. All proceeds from the $20 entry fees will benefit UWCK.
Smith said everyone will get glow lights to wear for this fun fundraiser. Participants are encouraged to adorn themselves with lights and/or reflective gear. Bikers are required to wear a helmet, with front and back lights on their bicycles.
The idea of a night-time community bike ride/run/walk came together too late for Christmas, said Great Bend Tribune Editor Dale Hogg, a bicycle enthusiast and member of Be Well Barton County. If it returns in subsequent years, it could be one of the holiday activities, perhaps taking place the day after Thanksgiving.
“We thought people would like to get out and have something to do,” Smith said.
This year there are no T-shirts, but participants will be judged on their lights, and first place will be awarded for the best decorated walker, runner and bicyclist.
Participants must be at least 18 years old and must sign a completed entry form/waiver, available at the Great Bend Chamber of Commerce office or the Great Bend Tribune, which is also a sponsor. Or they can contact Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will email a registration form. The City of Great Bend and Be Well Barton County are also sponsors.
In case of inclement weather, the alternate date for this event will be Jan. 18.
For more information contact Smith at 792-2403 or visit the website, www.uwck.org.