MYSTIC, CT - Lace up your sneakers and get ready to run, walk or waddle for the good of our feathered friends. Mystic Aquarium will hold its 5th Annual Penguin Run/Walk, a 5k run and two-mile walk, at 9 a.m. on Saturday, October 15 to benefit the endangered African penguin. All participants receive free admission to Mystic Aquarium on race day; dogs and strollers are welcome in the two-mile walk; door prizes, free food and drinks are available after the race; and the penguins themselves will be racing in the aquarium’s Marine Theater after the awards ceremony!
The 5k run is on a trail, field and road course and prizes will be awarded in eight age divisions for males and females.
The run includes a middle school cross-country team competition. The winning team will receive medals and an engraved trophy that will be passed to each year’s winning team. Each of the members on the middle school winning team will also receive a meet-and-greet with a penguin. Medals will go to the second and third place teams.
2 Mile Walk
Dogs and strollers are welcome during the two-mile walk.
1/4 Mile Kids' Race
The kids' race will take place after the walk ends and before the awards ceremony.
The top individual fundraiser will be awarded an original piece of art created by the penguins, and the runner-up will receive a free penguin meet and greet during which he/she will interact face-to-face with a penguin. The top fundraising team (consisting of up to 10 runners and/or walkers) will receive a penguin meet and greet and will be recognized on a plaque that will hang at the aquarium.
Free Aquarium Admission
To show our gratitude, all participants receive free Mystic Aquarium admission on race day, where they can visit the 30 African penguins in the Roger Tory Peterson Penguin Exhibit and see more than 70 other exhibits featuring more than 4,900 fish, invertebrates and marine mammals from around the world.
Participation Helps Save the Endangered African Penguin
The African penguin became an endangered species in 2010 and money raised from this event will help the penguins at the aquarium and across the world. Over the last eight years, the world’s African penguin population has decreased by over 60 percent. The penguins at the aquarium play an integral role in the African Penguin Species Survival Plan, and the aquarium staff’s work with them is helping researchers better understand penguins in the wild. In fact, Mystic Aquarium is a leader in a collaborative, nationwide effort to assist researchers in South Africa and sends staff to South Africa annually to assist in African penguin rescue efforts. Staff from the aquarium’s animal care, education and research departments examine all factors possibly affecting the penguins and develop plans for the aquarium to lead and assist with education, research and conservation efforts of these species.
Visit www.mysticaquarium.org to register for the 5th Annual Penguin Run/Walk. If you are unable to participate but would like to make a donation, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 860.572.5955 ext. 408.