BASIS International School teachers love adventures, and we are always looking for new ones.
It was a pleasant surprise to me when I arrived in China and found out there would be cultural, sporting, and theater options frequently available in English. I initially thought I would always have to go to Hong Kong for those activities, so it has been a welcome surprise to be able to go to a wide variety of events in nearby Shenzhen and Guangzhou–most of which have been either bilingual or English. Recently the musical ‘Chicago’ came through and there are English language plays to see sometimes as well. As someone who likes to plan things in advance, the websites that list upcoming activities (including how we learned about The Color Run) are super helpful.
Preparation, Registration, and Swag
Several teachers at BASIS International School Park Lane Harbour keep an eye on online listings for events and activities in our area of China. When The Color Run in nearby Shenzhen was announced, word started to spread and interest began to grow. The Color Run is a 5km fun walk/run known as “the happiest 5,000 meters on the planet.” No need to be a serious athlete–our groups included yogis, gym lovers, runners, and some just out for a nice walk. It was an extra special day for one of our team members who is a breast cancer survivor, as her family and friends were doing a walk at home in Iowa for her on the same weekend.
BASIS International School Park Lane Harbour teachers signed up easily online for The Color Run and made the short trip to Shenzhen for the event. In the online sign up section there was an option to choose the regular swag pack, or some fun extras like capes and tutus–which some of our teachers were thrilled to get their hands on.
The Color Run is the largest running series in the world and over six million runners worldwide have participated since its beginning in 2011. Founded in Arizona, The Color Run shares its founding state with the BASIS Curriculum Schools network headquarters and many of BASIS International Schools’ sister schools. This year’s version was called The Hero Tour and featured both the participants and superheroes. We certainly felt like superheroes as we posed for pictures with superhero statues, and embraced the theme and amazing vibe.
The event was held at Universiade Sports Center in Shenzhen. Some of us were familiar with the venue already from a previous trip to experience the unique opportunity to take in an NHL game in China between the Boston Bruins and Calgary Flames back in September. (Read more about the BASIS International Schools teachers attending the hockey game here.) On site registration was quick and easy, and our teachers were excited to get all of their Color Run gear on including shirts, tattoos, brightly colored sunglasses, and buffs. We had a great time taking team photos as we moved towards the start line.
The Race Begins
It turns out that The Color Run is one giant dance party! We hit the starting line after posing for pics with a few superheroes–and then off we went. After each kilometer there was a paint station with volunteers throwing brightly colored paint powder all over us. One station also had a foam party with more paint to follow. The event ended with medals and a giant dance party at the end. This was the most fun any of us had ever had doing a 5km walk/run.
We left covered in paint, wearing medals and various Color Run outfits, and vowing to “BRING EVERYONE” next year because it was “THE BEST.”
China does a great job offering lots of things for people to do and there are websites with English options for seeing what’s available and buying tickets. Events are well organized and it’s rarely hard to find someone to help with translation if needed. Your life can be as active as you want it to be here if you take advantage of all of the activities and events on offer.
We will definitely take a big team to next year’s Color Run and share the fun with as many people as we can. We hope Dr. V brings back his famous cape and tutu look next year as well.
– Jennifer Gunter is an 8th Grade Subject Expert Teacher and the Head of English at BASIS International School Park Lane Harbour