“Come on, hurry Children, let’s go!” I hollered at the kids at the end of our run when the good folks at the venue were starting to pack up.
Yes, the kids were reluctant to leave even as the midday sun beat down on us after having completed 2019’s Safari Zoo Run! Despite a one-year gap (last year I was recuperating from my cancer op), the Safari Zoo Run is still our family’s favorite family sports event which we support annually.
Here are the reasons:
- 3 in 1: The family run brought us through parts of the 3 parks – The Singapore Zoo, River Safari and The Night Safari. We were in the first wave of the non-competitive family category so we were able to run past animals that were active and alert in the early morning. Buddy was especially excited to see wild animals such as hippos, tapirs, hyenas and even a pride of lionesses and lions. He couldn’t resist but to break into his ‘Lion King’ musical theme song on the spot, much to our amusement!
- Awake and Alert: The run allows parents and kids to run or walk together through the 3 parks amidst the lush greenery surrounded by the sounds of the cicadas and caws of many different wild animals. The theme ‘Run For Wildlife’ empowers families to support nature conservation. Families are given a choice to choose which nature conservation they are ‘rooting’ for ranging from ‘Run for Clean Air’ and ‘Run for the Forest’ to ‘Run for Clean water’. This year, with the inclusion of River Safari as part of the race route, kids get to learn why we need to preserve and protect our water resources.
- One for All: Whether you are athletic or not, or if you prefer to run competitively or not, the Safari Zoo Run has something for everyone. For the competitive runners, there is the 12 km Safari Zoo Challenge and for the competitive kids, there’s the 2km Safari Zoo Duo Dash and Junior Dash. For my family who like to take things a bit more leisurely (especially since we have a preschooler), we were happy to participate in the 4 km walk. We took 2 hours to complete the race, stopping at various stops to snap pics with the mascots.
- More than a run: The Safari Zoo Run is not just a point A to point B dash nor an endurance run. By running through the 3 parks, we enjoyed each other’s company while enjoying the experience out in the ‘wild’ with the animals. In the process, we got re-acquainted with nature and learn about conservation. It’s a run with a deeper significance, which makes it meaningful for us.
- Value-added: The fun at Safari Zoo Run extends AFTER it. With the race bib, all participants get to enjoy FREE admission into the Singapore Zoo and the River Safari while the Night Safari and Jurong Bird Park offers 50% off its admission for participants until March 2019. This is over and above the attractive retail discounts offered to participants. Totally worth it!
As the starting horn blared and I saw both my kids surged forward excitedly, I found myself holding back tears, tears of gratitude for being to participate this year’s run with my family. If there is one family sporting event that is high on my list of ‘MUST-DOs’, it would undoubtedly be the Safari Zoo Run. Quite simply put, it’s not just a sporting event but also a time to be educated, enriched and empowered as a family to do something for conservation and wildlife.