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Fort4Fitness Holds First Fantasy of Lights 5K

Runners participate in a Fort4Fitness event through downtown Fort Wayne.

Photo credit: Fort4Fitness

Runners participate in a Fort4Fitness event through downtown Fort Wayne.
Written by: Communicator StaffNovember 10, 2016

For the first time, Fort4Fitness will be hosting a Fantasy of Lights 5K event in Fort Wayne. Participants will start running through the bright, colorful trail at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 19, three days before it is open to the public.

“The goal of all of Fort4Fitness’ events are to encourage people to get out and get moving,” said Carrie Reeb, the executive director of Fort4Fitness. “We like to try to have fun while providing a fun community atmosphere that excites everyone and gets them to rally behind fitness in the community.”

The success of the Spring Cycle and Fall Festival motivated Fort4Fitness to support this third event, according to wayne.com.

The Fantasy of Lights 5K will begin at Franke Park, next to the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo, and Fort4Fitness expects to have 1,000 participants.

Race fees are $25 for adults; $20 for children ages 6-17; and free for children ages 5 and under.

“All ages and all fitness levels attend our events, and we work to make sure we have something for everyone in the family,” Reeb said.

Individuals must register online, as no onsite registration will be available. Packets can be picked up at Franke Park 4-7 p.m. Nov. 18 and 3-6 p.m. Nov. 19.

At packet pick-up on Saturday, participants are encouraged to dress up for the Best Costume Contest and enter to win a prize pack featuring a Blue Jacket Clothing, Inc. gift certificate and a Fort4Fitness merchandise store gift certificate.

The first lighting of the Fantasy of Lights will be at 6 p.m. Nov. 19 followed by the start of the 5K at 6:30 p.m. The display has 85 larger-than-life brilliant, animated light displays, according to fort4fitness.org.

This is an opportunity for participants to view the display before it opens for the season on Nov. 22.

Spectators are also encouraged to view the lighting and cheer runners on for free.

The course is 3.1 miles and will take runners through the Fantasy of Lights displays.

New to the Fantasy of Lights display this year will be a “Winter Runners” Fort4Fitness scene. Other displays include Santa Claus, ice skaters, carolers, nativity figures, animals and much more.

At least one lap through the lights and two loops around the lights will be included in the course along with a .4 mile section on gravel through the old drive-in theater loop southwest of the Foellinger Theatre parking lot.

After the race, participants will be provided with complimentary hot chocolate, snacks, goodie bag and a long-sleeve T-shirt. Runners’ times will be chip-recorded and available online.

Typically, the drive-through display draws over 50,000 spectators each year.

The cost is $5 per car; $10 per 15-passenger van; and $25 per bus/trolley Sunday through Thursday and $10 per car; $15 per 15-passenger van; $30 per bus/trolley Friday and Saturday.

Proceeds go directly toward the event costs and Blue Jacket’s Career Academy training, which prepares anyone with a barrier to employment for work.