The sun rose over Empakasi Primary School on the Naretonoi Conservancy near Kitengela town. Busses pulled up and people piled out. Some unloaded bicycles. Everyone received a numbered bib while upbeat electronic hip-hop blared over the speakers and a pop-up Zumba class facilitated the warm up.
Around 7AM, the cyclists were off. The runners followed shortly behind. The course followed a dirt path through bush-studded grasslands, dense acacia forest, and small villages. Zebra, impala, ostriches, and wildebeests grazed in close proximity. Rangers worked behind the scenes to drive away any threats.
As racers crossed the finish line, they received a medal. Music and Zumba resumed. Juices and hot food were available for sale. It was the 5th annual Bicycles 4 Wildlife (B4W) cycling event, but the first time we offered a trail run option. As a result, we had a record turn out of about 150 runners and cyclists, which is triple the attendance of last year.
The event’s sponsors are dedicated to conserving wildlife biodiversity and local communities by nurturing a sustainable relationship between humans and wildlife. Proceeds from the race support The Wildlife Foundation’s Conservation and Livelihoods Program, which you can read more about here.
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