By Jessica Fox
Participants in the Freedom Run on July 4 will be greeted by an array of American flags as they race toward the finish line.
This event is a 4.5-mile race that kicks off the CarmelFest Independence Day activities each year. This year, the race starts at 8 a.m. at Carmel High School and finishes in the same spot. The course will take runners through Old Town, down the Monon Trail to City Hall and back up Range Line Road to the high school.
Drivers should expect road blocks in that area of town before 9 a.m. the morning of the race.
Several participants, it is anticipated, will dress in Fourth of July-themed clothing for the competition. And it’s not uncommon to see others dressed as Uncle Sam or the Statue of Liberty.
“We try to make it fun for the whole family. It’s a great way to kick off the Fourth of July activities,” said Freedom Run Race Director Don Carr.
The run got its start at a time when CarmelFest partnered with Indianapolis county music radio station HANK-FM (97.1). The race has continued the tradition with the help of other CarmelFest partners for the past eight years.
The Freedom Run also features a 1.5-mile walk for people who do not wish to run, but still want to participate, as well as a children’s fun run.
The walk course – which doesn’t stray from high school property – starts at 8:05 a.m. and the kids’ fun run starts at 9:15 a.m. The kids’ run is free and open to children ages 10 and younger.
Awards will be given to the top three runners in each age category. There also will be awards given for the most creative Fourth of July-themed outfit among the participants.
Participants will receive an event T-shirt and goodie bag. Refreshments will be provided following the race.
Registration prior to July 3 is $20 and $15 for any additional family members.
Runners can still register the morning of the event, but there will be an extra $5 fee.
For more information visit www.carmelfest.net.