Run to mark Earth Day

Carson City and nearby-area residents will have a choice of running events this weekend to celebrate Earth Day and Arbor Day.

The Kaia FIT Earth Day Run will be 8 a.m. Saturday in Franktown Road. It will be a run/walk, offering distances of 5K, 10K, half-marathon and kid fun run.

The races will begin on the south end of Franktown Road in Washoe Valley.

“It’s a beautiful run,” said Darnette Hoag, manager of Kaia Fit, a women’s fitness group in Carson City and Minden. “It’s just majestic. You can see the mountains. You can see the valley. It’s just a chance to get out and be thankful and love the Earth and focus on taking care of our planet.”

The Arbor Day 5K, presented by the Carson City Shade Tree Council and SMACK Fitness, will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Riverview Park. It will be followed by a ceremony and tree planting at 11:30 a.m.

“It’s pretty laid-back, just a fun run,” said Roger Moellendorf, director of Carson City Parks and Recreation. “It’s an opportunity to get out and do a little exercise before the Arbor Day Ceremony.”

This year tree will be planted at the Korean War Memorial Park, adjacent to Riverview, Moellendorf said. It’s a tradition that has been going on for decades.

“Trees are very important to our quality of life,” he said. “They clean air, cool temperatures and they add to our property values. This is a good thing to do for our community.”

During the ceremony, Moellendorf said, Carson City will be presented with the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree City USA award, its 20th consecutive year to receive that distinction. The Shade Tree Council will also present the George Washington Ferris Award — named after an early pioneer of landscaping in Carson City — to Juan Guzman, the city’s open space manager and John Christopherson, resource program manager for the Nevada Division of Forestry.

Moellendorf said they are receiving the award for their work in rehabilitating and reforesting the area burned by the Waterfall fire in 2004, along with other educational programs they each conduct.

He said the ceremony is an important event each year.

“It’s more than just a feel-good thing,” he said. “It’s to remind people of how important trees are to our community. It prioritizes the planting and care of trees.”

The Kaia FIT Earth Day Run is open to all levels, with an out-and-back route for all races. Proceeds from the run will benefit the Carson Valley Trails Association.

“We live in one of the most coveted places in the world,” Hoag said. “It’s a beautiful way to be thankful for where we live and the planet we live on. It gets us back to nature. It’s a great family event, and a great way to start your Saturday.”


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