|Oregon Parks Forever has joined a virtual 5K race, inspired by American painter and PBS television personality Bob Ross’ love of the outdoors, to help plant trees in parks & forests. Registration is now open for the 2024 Run for the Trees / Happy Little (Virtual) 5K.
Participants can run, walk, hike, or roll to complete their 5K anywhere outdoors, anytime between Earth Day (April 22) and Arbor Day (April 28). Runners are encouraged to register by March 1, to ensure that your swag arrives before the event week. Registration will close on April 1.
For $36 per person, each participant will receive a keepsake Happy Little T-shirt, a commemorative bib number and a finisher’s medal. All Oregon race proceeds support tree planting and forest protection efforts in Oregon parks.
Initially, the “Happy Little Trees” program began with a partnership between the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and with Bob Ross Inc. and hundreds of volunteers helping to plant “happy little trees” at locations hard-hit by invasive pests and tree diseases, but the partnership quickly expanded to include the Run for the Trees / Happy Little (Virtual) 5K.
As the Happy Little 5K gained popularity, more states have joined the effort. Now in its fourth year, the Happy Little 5K has expanded its reach to include eight other states. Together, Michigan, Oregon, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Wisconsin will “lock arms” as they help raise awareness and funding for stewardship efforts in each state’s parks.
“We are thrilled to partner with Bob Ross, Inc. and these other eight states on the Happy Little 5K concept as a way to honor the late Bob Ross and create a legacy event to plant trees,” said Seth Miller, Executive Director of Oregon Parks Forever.”
Over the past three years alone, the event in Michigan, Ohio, South Carolina and Wisconsin has included more than 52,000 participants raising more than $1 million in net proceeds. Oregon Parks Forever is joining this event as an expansion of our efforts to fund the replanting of trees killed by wildfires, heat domes and invasive insects. Over the past two years, Oregon Parks Forever has been able to fund the replanting of more than 800,000 trees across Oregon.
“The official Bob Ross 5K is probably our most favorite initiative,” says Joan Kowalski, president of Bob Ross Company. “It’s the perfect blend of everything Bob held dear; nature, taking care of the environment, and happy trees too of course. He would have been so pleased to see how it’s getting so popular around the world.”
For more information, contact Seth Miller at 503/966-1053 or firstname.lastname@example.org