POLACCA, Ariz. - Water has always big a major issue of concern for Hopi people. With all the recent controversy over the Snowbowl artificial snowmaking issue, water has taken on an even higher importance for Native tribes.
The Seventh Annual "Water is Life" run is set to take place on Sept. 11 on the Hopi Reservation. Founder Bill "Bucky" Preston, a Hopi tribal member and life long professional long distance runner, is looking for runner participants, participant prizes and community support. The registration deadline is Sunday.
There are three categories of run events: the Ultra Run, which is $65 per person; the Ultra Run Relay, which is $20 per person; and the four-mile run/walk, which is $10 per person. Registration for this last event is open all the way up until the day of the event.
The Ultra Run will start at 6 a.m. MST. The three-team relay begins at 7 a.m. MST and the six-team relay begins at 7:30 a.m. MST. The final walk/run even will begin at 8 a.m. MST
Following the event, there will be a traditional Hopi meal served for everyone and prizes and T-shirts for the Ultra Runner participants and registered runners.
The Ultra Run is exclusive to the registered runners in that it follows an ancient Hopi foot trail through First Mesa and through the historic village of Walpi. There is no other run such as this offered to the outside public in the exclusive Hopi villages.
The run will start at State Highway 264, milepost 390. Signs will be posted.
The "Water is Life" run incorporates the Hopi philosophy of running as a way to educate both Hopis and non-Hopis about the importance of water to the world existence and create more awareness of the importance of water preservation and conservation. This exclusive event also brings diverse people together in a prayer for water.
To donate food, money or prizes for the Ultra Runners, contact Preston at (928) 737-2705 or Kim Secakuku at (928) 221-6167 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
All donations made to the Water is Life Run through Native Movement are fully tax deductible.
As co-sponsor's of the Water is Life Run, the Sierra Club will be hosting a pre-run spagetti dinner and movie night at the Polcacca Community Building the night before the run on Friday, Sept. 10 at 5:30pm. Guests are welcome to bring side dishes to share in this free runner's spagetti dinner to had by all.
Two films, including "Power Paths" and "The Snowbowl Effect," will be shown during dinner. These documentary films explore the links between sacred lands and water impacted by developments by snowmaking and coal plants on Navajo and Hopi lands. Each film is one hour long.
For more information, visit www.waterisliferun.org or call (928) 774-6103.