March 23: Color Me Rad 5K brings rainbow of fun to downtown Columbus

Don't be surprised if this 5K race travels somewhere over the rainbow.

Downtown Columbus on March 23 will welcome the Color Me Rad 5K, part of a national series of races. Unfamiliar with the concept?

"Basically you get your whitest, cleanest shirt, tank-top, wife beater or just a thick patch of bleached chest hair and run until you get coated in color so thick, Tide with Bleach will be calling you to star in their next commercial," according to information posted on the event's official website.

Presented by Uptown Columbus, the local run will take place at Woodruff Park. It benefits the Children's Miracle Network.

"Our registration is going well. We are on track to hopefully have lots and lots of runners come out and support Children's Miracle Network and Uptown Columbus," said Elizabeth Hurst, vice president of community relations and marketing for Uptown Columbus.

The event is a creative variation on traditional road races.

"It's a 5K but it's not your traditional 5K," Hurst said of the race, which spans just over 3 miles.

You won't see an intimidating clock monitoring your finish time, but you will find an abundance of color -- completely non-toxic, of course.

"We encourage everybody to wear all white. Colored corn starch will be thrown on the participants," Hurst said. "At the end of the race, that's where the party happens."

Expect to see a celebratory atmosphere with continued blasts of color.

Many local fitness enthusiasts have hoped Columbus would eventually host this type of event. Cities like Orlando and New Orleans will also host Color Me Rad races this year. "It's really a huge, huge step for our community," Hurst said.

The Color Me Rad 5K race is March 23 at Woodruff Park in downtown Columbus. Color Bombs will start flying at 8 a.m. and runners will cross the start line in waves. Registration costs up to $50, depending when you sign up. Use the code "UPTOWN" and you'll get 10 percent off your registration.

For more information about running or volunteering, visit colormerad.com or email ehurst@uptowncolumbusga.com