Champion of Trees 10K helps fund The Morton Arboretum's scientific mission
Ah, nature. It might have been the one bright spot in an otherwise dreary year. Going outside for a walk, hitting the backyard for a change of scenery, or even hitting the local forest preserves for some social distancing activities were about all we had in the way of entertainment.
Now that spring is here, and restrictions are lifting, it's time to show Mother Nature a little love by taking part in events that honor the great outdoors. And there is no better place to start than The Morton Arboretum's Champion of Trees 10K.
This event will take place over two days, April 17 and 18, at the outdoor tree museum located at 4100 Route 53 in Lisle.
Kara Silva, public relations and social media specialist for the Arboretum, shared details about the upcoming event.
Q: Please give a brief overview of The Morton Arboretum.
A: Founded by Joy Morton in 1922, The Morton Arboretum in Lisle champions trees through plant collections, science and conservation work, education programs, events and exhibitions, and outreach.
The outdoor tree museum's 1,700 acres of tree and plant collections grow amid beautiful woodlands, savannas, lakes, wetlands, the DuPage River and Schulenberg Prairie -- one of the oldest prairie restorations in the world.
Each year, the nonprofit welcomes nearly one million guests. At the Arboretum's world-renowned research center, scientists and conservationists are building a green legacy for future generations by understanding how to grow healthier trees, protect threatened tree species and create healthy tree communities globally so people and the planet can thrive.
Q: What are some of your programs? How will this fundraiser benefit those programs?
A: Events such as the Champion of Trees 10K Run and Walk support the Arboretum's scientific mission to plant and protect trees and maintain its 1,700 acres for guests to enjoy the many benefits of being among trees.
Q: Tell us about the Champion of Trees 10K. How does it work?
A: This is the 11th year of the Champion of Trees 10K Run and Walk. Following COVID-19 safety measures, the event will take place on-site over two days, Saturday, April 17, or Sunday, April 18. Hours are 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. The last start time is 10:45 a.m.
Staggered start times of every 15 minutes will ensure on-site participants can maintain a safe distance apart, while virtual participants may run or walk on a course and date of their choosing.
The challenging course winds through rolling terrain on the Arboretum's scenic east side. No matter when or where participants choose to run or walk, their participation supports the Arboretum's mission to plant and protect trees.
Q: How can people participate?
A: To participate in the Champion of Trees 10K in-person or virtual event, register on the Arboretum's website at mortonarb.org/events/champion-trees-10k.
The cost to participate is $45 for Arboretum members and $50 for others. Pick up your race bib and T-shirt at Dick Pond Athletics in Lisle during regular store hours, now through April 16.
Registration includes admission to the Arboretum. Runners are welcome to enjoy the rest of the day exploring the Arboretum upon completion of the 10K.
Q: How can readers help if they can't participate in the event?
A: Those unable to participate in the 10K can support the Arboretum by making a donation at mortonarb.org/donate.
Q: What else would you like readers to know?
A: The Morton Arboretum hosts a variety of health and wellness activities throughout the year, including the new The Morton Arboretum Wellness Challenge beginning April 30 (free registration begins April 16), the Fall Color 5K, a Chicago Marathon team, yoga, Tai Chi, forest therapy walks and guided hikes.
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Champion of Trees 10K
What: To support The Morton Arboretum's scientific mission to plant and protect trees and maintain its 1,700 acres.
When: 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 17, and Sunday, April 18; last start time is 10:45 a.m.
Where: The Morton Arboretum, 4100 Route 53, Lisle
Cost: $45 for Arboretum members; $50 for others