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World’s “happiest race” comes to Brussels

09:50 05/09/2014

Some 15,000 people will gather at the Tour & Taxis complex in Brussels this Sunday for what is billed as the happiest race on the planet: the 5km Color Run is taking place for only the second time in the capital.

The Color Run, one of a growing field of non-traditional races, will splatter fitness fanatics and friends dressed in clean white t-shirts with coloured powder as they pass through different stages. Celebrations then culminate in a mass throw of colour packets to create a rainbow cloud during a music festival-type atmosphere.

The Color Run is loosely inspired by the Hindu festival Holi where it is tradition to throw natural coloured powders as the seasons change from winter to spring. Launched in Arizona in January 2012, it has proved wildly popular: the Brussels version is sold out, and is already Belgium’s third biggest mass participation event after the 20km of Brussels and the Antwerp 10 miles.

But it is not a race: there are no winners or prizes, punters depart when they want in a two-hour window, are untimed, and many of them walk anyway. Organisers emphasise fun over competition, connecting with friends and family, being active and enjoying oneself.

Written by Leo Cendrowicz