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Painting Gaborone for fun

Publishing Date : 30 March, 2015

Author : BENAH SEKGABO


Imagine running and being dabbed with food colouring every kilometre! Sound fun? Well, then get your running shoes ready because the Colour Run is coming to Botswana this October.

The Colour Run is an event series and five kilometres paint race that takes place in North America, South America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. The untimed event has no winners or prizes, but runners are showered with coloured powder, made of food-grade corn starch, at stations along the run.


Runners are required to start off the run in a white T-shirt. After every kilometre completed, participants are doused with a different colour until they reach the finish line in multi-coloured T-shirts. “Now that’s the kind of marathon we can get behind! It doesn’t matter if you speed walk or race to the finish, the main goal is to have fun,” the event manager, Bianca Hule said.

Each colour station is associated with a different colour, with volunteers blasting the runners with dyed corn-starch out of spray bottles. At the finish line following the untimed run, there are typically celebrations featuring a dance party and food vendors.

Hule added that “Given that the event also benefits some of the local charities, we think it’s a great excuse to lace up our sneakers for a good cause.”     

According to a statement released by the event manager, in 2012, the Colour Run held events in over 50 North American cities, with a total of more than 600,000 participants. It has therefore become the largest five-kilometre event series in the United States. In 2013, events were held in over 130 cities in the United States, South America, Europe and Australia.

 “The Colour Run, along with other unique racing events, is gaining wider appeal as it helps generate new interest in running and inspires new athletes.  The Colour Run is among those that represent a new theme in running- the selling of an experience beyond the accomplishment of crossing the finish line,” explained Hule.


The event is expected to boost local and international tourism as they not only expect participants from all over Botswana but from South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Overseas. Hotels and tourist resorts will benefit and Botswana at large would be marketed internationally.

The organizers of the Botswana Edition have been partners for Colour Run Zimbabwe, Mozambique and South Africa. All of the events co-hosted before had a minimum attendance of 10 000 people which shows colour run is internationally accepted. “Mr Bright Gumbochuma is the Regional director and he has been to the USA, UK and UAE to attend and gain more exposure and experience in the Colour Run,” emphasised Hule.

Colour run is a unique and world class event that needs sustainable funds for it to be successful. “We promise our sponsors and participants value for their money using our vast experience in previous events and we also aim to raise funds for charity,” Hule highlighted.  

The event will start with a 5km run day festival and eventually the neon party. “So it is a 3 in 1 event on 1 ticket,” said Hule. The will be sold from P150-200, starting 20 April.

“Charities involved will be disclosed too we are in talks with the 2 charities that may benefit from the run,” concluded Hule.

The Botswana edition will be held on the 26th of September 2015 and the venue is still to be finalised. Botswana will be the third country in Africa to host the colour run after South Africa and Zimbabwe.

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