This weekend there’s a fun beach run going on on the Isle of Palms, a rare chance to race near the surf.
Not only is it healthy, sandy fun near your Charleston beach house, it also helps support a great cause. Think: loggerheads, and sea life.
The South Carolina Aquarium is a big draw for people visiting Charleston, and for good reason. They have wonderful interactive exhibits exploring wildlife in the ocean and water habitats near here. They have also created a state-of-the-art rehabilitation hospital for one of the Lowcountry’s favorite part-time residents, the loggerhead sea turtle.
Much like human guests, loggerheads pay a visit to the beach near the Isle of Palms between May and October. In the turtles’ case, they are laying nests of eggs. Local “turtle team” volunteers monitor them carefully to ensure their safe hatching and return to the ocean.
Lights Out for Loggerheads
This is why ask those staying in a Charleston beach house to keep “lights out for loggerheads.” You are asked not to have any exterior lights on that would be visible from the beach, and thus confuse loggerhead hatchlings as they crawl to the sea. They can mistake the exterior lights on a luxury house on Isle of Palms for the reflection of the moonlight. They instinctively look for it to head toward the surf.
Well, the SC Aquarium is sponsoring a 5K sunset beach run/walk on the IOP this weekend. It will benefit sea turtles and their new Sea Turtle Care Center (turtle exhibit and hospital expansion). By my count, this is the third annual one.
It’s called the Turtle Trek 5K, and it’s happening this coming Saturday, September 29th from 4:00 p.m. till 9:00 p.m. This is unusual since most run/walks take place in the morning.
Here are the deets on the Turtle Trek 5K beach run
- Takes place at the IOP County Park. This is the location of many of the Aquarium’s sea turtle releases, and very close to most of our Isle of Palms vacation rentals.
- Packet pickup is from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. day of;
- Beach sweep and warm-up: 4:00 – 5:00;
- Kids’ fun run starts at 5:00 p.m.;
- Adults’ 5K run starts at 5:30;
- Registration fee ($45 adult, $25 kids) includes race entry, technical T-shirt, and after party access at The Windjammer;
- After Party from 6-9:00 will have awards, free food for all runners, raffle with prizes, and live music.
- Awards given for Top 3 Overall (male/female) and Top 3 in Age Categories (male/female): 1-9, 10-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60+. All kids’ fun run participants will receive ribbons.
Here’s more about the beach run. You can register here. Last I checked, registration is full, but you can add your name to the waiting list. There is still availability for the kids’ fun run at 5:00. lastly, here’s the event page on the Aquarium’s website.
IOP County Park is located at 1 14th Avenue. Parking at the county park is $8 per car, or free for Gold Pass members. Or you could just walk, bike or golf cart from your home on the IOP. The event will go on rain or shine.
So enjoy a fun sunset beach run on the IOP. And be sure to call EP when you’re looking for the perfect place to stay on the Isle of Palms.
your Isle of Palms vacation blogger
This weekend, try a fun beach run on the Isle of Palms… or you can set some ladybugs free!
One of the more fun local running events is coming up this Saturday. What makes it unique is that it’s on the beach itself. You get to run on wide hard-packed sand, at low tide, just steps from the ocean.
It’s hard to beat a race that takes place right in front of your Charleston beach house.
Yes, it’s the 2018 edition of the IOP Beach Run — now in the 26th year of its existence. It’s happening this coming Saturday morning, July 21st, rain or shine, beginning at 8:00 a.m.
All beach run events start and finish behind the Windjammer at Front Beach.
In years past, sponsors have been familiar area businesses. They’ve included The Windjammer (of course), TrySports, The Foot Store, East Cooper Medical Center, Play It Again Sports, Atlantic Game and Tackle, Chick-fil-A, Powerade, Barrier Island Eco Tours, Coconut Joe’s, Island Ice Frozen Yogurt, Harris Teeter, the Isle of Palms Marina, ACME Lowcountry Kitchen, East Cooper Sporting Goods, Race Management Systems and Beach House Spa.
More specs on the IOP Beach Run
Those of you who’ve taken part in years past may note some changes to the event. When it first began in 1993, it was originally called the “Sand Shark Run” and was a four-miler. It has evolved into the Isle of Palms Beach Run – a 5K and also now a 10K event, as well as Youth Fun Runs – 100 yards for ages 4 and under, ½ mile for ages 5 to 8, and one miler for ages 9 to 14. The 5K is a run/walk and the 10K is a run.
Fees are: $35 for the runs and walk, and $15 for Youth Fun Runs.
NOTE: You still have time to register online. The deadline for online registration is noon tomorrow – Wednesday, July 18th. Here’s a link where you can register online.
If you miss tomorrow’s deadline, you can still register in person during packet pickup. That will happen Friday, July 20th from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at the Windjammer, or Saturday morning starting at 7:00 a.m.
The 5K and 10Ks begin first at 8:00 a.m., followed by the Youth Fun Runs at 9:00. The 5K/10K awards are given out afterwards at the Windjammer.
Set some ladybugs free
One of the best things about staying in a Charleston beach house is that you get to bring different generations together. There’s nothing like enjoying the unbridled summer joy of kids on vacation from school.
So when the kids are itching for something fun to do, it helps to have some cool stuff lined up.
One such thing is also coming up this Saturday. Starting at 9:00 a.m., you and your kids are invited to come to Magnolia Plantation and Gardens for a massive ladybug release! This is the 5th annual installment of an event which has grown each year in popularity.
In previous years, Magnolia has distributed 150,000 ladybugs to be set free out into the 60 acres of gardens. This year, they’re upping it to 200,000 of the cute little critters. Much more than just being adorable, ladybugs are also great friends of the garden, and are natural predators to harmful pests like aphids and scale insects.
What to expect
Appropriately, the event will begin with the arrival of a red Volkswagen Beetle resembling a ladybug. Beloved local mascots Charlie T. RiverDog and Cool Ray will be on hand to help in the fun.
Each family will receive a slew of ladybugs to release somewhere on the grounds. Magnolia will store them in a cool place the night before, so they don’t immediately fly away when released, but will linger and get used to their new surroundings.
A $20 general garden admission fee for adults applies, but kids 6-12 are $10, and children five and under are free. They’ll give out prizes for the best ladybug outfit in different age categories. Talk about a cute photo op! There will also be face painting, live animals and nature displays from several different organizations. Word to the wise: arrive early and carpool if possible. The ladybug release ends at 2:00.
The following groups will be present, offering information or activities for the kids…
• Beekeeping display
• Berkeley County First Steps
• Charleston County Sheriff’s Department
• Charleston Fossil Adventures
• RiverDogs baseball team
• Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry
• Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 12-8
• Grice Marine Laboratory, College of Charleston
• Keeper of the Wild
• MEDUCARE Transport Service, Medical University of South Carolina
• S.C. Department of Natural Resources
• Sea Kayak Carolina
• South Carolina Aquarium
• St. Andrews Fire Department
• Stingrays hockey team
• Tri-County Master Gardeners
• Turtle Survivor Alliance
• U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service
• U.S. Coast Guard
Magnolia Plantation is located at 3550 Ashley River Road in Charleston, a scenic drive from the Isle of Palms. Here’s a link to more info about the event on their website.
So enjoy the fun, and remember to get in touch with EP to help you find the best place to stay at the beach.
your Isle of Palms vacation blogger