Participants at the Stook 10 mile race
Gowran hearts may be red to the core but on Sunday November 18 they’ll be “going green” for the seventh running of the Stook 10 mile and 5km road races.
Kilkenny County Council wasted no time in supporting and guiding this well known AAI certified club road race now in its seventh year to go green. With upwards of 800 competitors it is a fantastic opportunity to raise environmental awareness and also lessen the environmental footprint of the event through greening initiatives.
Mary Cashin, Environmental Awareness Officer advises, " On race day the hydration stations will have reusable cups instead of individual plastic bottles eliminating the use of single use plastics which is a first for this event. Supported by Kilkenny County Council through LAPN funding these cups will be supplied by Refill.ie. Key to this sponsorship arrangement with Refill.ie is that up to 1500 reusable cups will be available to other event organisers in Kilkenny, for free, subject to terms and conditions. This initiative maximises the sponsorship and further reduces the need for single use plastic bottles/cups at other events reducing the cumulative impact. Organisers of events who wish to avail of the reusable cups should contact Refill.ie for further information".
The Stook 10 Committee has embraced a range of greening initiatives including:-
Pre-race clean up of the entire route collecting 40 kg of waste from the roadside.
Post race use of compostable cups.
Bins signage to encourage correct segregation of waste.
Use of social media to avoid the printing of posters and reuse of signage from previous years.
Competitors are encouraged to bring their own reusable bottle/cup and cycle or organise to carpool to the event.
Simon O'Dwyer, Race Director commented “Stook has always been about community and giving back. Earlier in the year we were looking at how to build on the previous successes from a race experience and fundraising point of view. Out of this discussion came a very natural decision to try and find way we could reduce the impact that the race has on the environment. We’ve never been afraid of trying something new and different so in our first year, with the help and guidance of Kilkenny County Council, we are addressing some important areas such as plastic bottles, waste management and transport - all areas where real differences can be made. Hopefully other races can learn from our experience in 2018 and the cumulative impact of all road races can be reduced.”