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Happy Planet Running

Run a great race. Leave no trace.

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Sustainability Reports

Happy Trails: The Legend races achieve 97 Percent Diversion

An absolutely perfect morning for a race at Sleepy Hollow State Park, and another great Zero Waste result. (Pictured: our race director holding the single bag of trash from a 650-person race.)

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Ober the Top! Sustainability Wins at the Oberun 5K

The adage was proven again! Heavily market a 5K and you’ll get a decent turnout; whisper “5K and beer” and they’ll beat down the door, especially if the beer is Oberon. This race sold out weeks before the actual event. With a warm evening forecast, and with post-race food including pizza, the beer cans promised to be flying off the tables. Could our intrepid Zero Waste team keep up with the rush? Read on and see!

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Getting down! Pterodactyl Tri achieves 94% Diversion

When the T-rex dances, you know there’s something to celebrate! Another successful sprint triathlon on a gorgeous evening, and another great Zero Waste result.

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Sustainability Report: Huron River Day

I’m pleased to pass along this sustainability report from last week’s Huron River Day in Ann Arbor. I was there as an informal volunteer, “talking trash” with the fine folks at Zero Waste Washtenaw who were managing the sustainability activities.

Huron River Day - Me at Zero Waste station
Helping get stuff put where it belongs. (Photo courtesy of Noelle.)

A large crowd came to Gallup Park to kayak, play games, eat, and enjoy a perfect summer afternoon. And for the first time at this event, Zero Waste stations were set up to save recyclable and compostable materials from the landfill. And they achieved 86% diversion, an excellent first-year result!

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Kaboom! Firecracker 5K hits 99 Percent Diversion

What’s better than a Fourth of July 5K followed by a parade? A Fourth of July 5K that left no trash behind. That’s worth celebrating!

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Simply Divine: Tri Goddess Achieves 94% Diversion

Goddess Tri? Goddess(es) did! Have a great event, and recover a lot of waste, that is.

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ROAR! Triceratops Tri achieves 95% Diversion

A famous long-extinct species was spotted everywhere at last week’s Triceratops Triathlon. But you know what’s hardly seen these days at an RF Events race? Garbage! Sending piles of event waste to a landfill is on its way to sharing the fate of the dinosaurs, although I doubt any future triathlons will be named after it.

So how did we host and feed 450 hungry triathletes while keeping a beautiful park pristine and the dumpsters empty? Read on!

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Freedom from Waste: Liberty Festival achieves 97% Diversion

Oh say, can you see. . .any trash? Not at this race!

Sustainability Report: Liberty Festival Races 2017
Date: June 17, 2017
Event company: RF Events, Ann Arbor MI
Location: Heritage Park, Canton MI
# Attendees: 1,200 runners
Zero Waste Team volunteers: 2

Race Overview

The races are part of a weekend-long Liberty Festival held by the city of Canton at Heritage Park. There are carnival rides and attractions, a vintage car show, and more.

The races kick off with a 5K, followed by a 10K. Faster runners can sign up to run both races (called the “Uncle Sam Slam”) and get a special additional finishers award. Later in the morning there’s a one-mile kids fun run. After the races, runners often go elsewhere in the park to enjoy the festival’s other activities.

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Flirting with Zero! Flirt with Dirt achieves 99% Diversion

ONE BROKEN PINT GLASS. One discarded race bib. A few strands of masking tape. A few odds and ends. That was it for trash.

Sustainability Report: Flirt with Dirt 2017
Date: June 3, 2017
Event company: RF Events, Ann Arbor MI
Location: Lakeshore Park, Novi MI
# Attendees: 500 runners
Zero Waste Team volunteers: 3

Race Overview

Flirt with Dirt is a Saturday morning 5K and 10K through running and bike trails at a park in Novi. It’s part of the RF Events “Serious Series” that includes a half marathon (The Legend) and Trail Marathon (5 miles up to 50K).

This event is short and sweet; the 5K starts at 7:30 a.m., the 10K at 8:15, and it’s all over and done with by 10:30. It’s popular both with seasoned trail runners, (many of whom choose to run both distances) and families; the 10-14 age group had more 5K runners than most of the adult age groups!

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