The Hartford Marathon Foundation, founded in 1994, coordinates over 30 athletic events across the state of Connecticut and Rhode Island. The Foundation is committed to taking all possible measures to reduce its carbon footprint on the planet while promoting, educating and encouraging participants, volunteers and spectators to do the same.
In keeping with these beliefs, the Hartford Marathon is dedicated to making race participant’s experiences as eco-friendly as possible. Some of the continuing sustainable items include:
- Promoting locally produced and sourced food items
- Donating all extra food to local food banks
- Water cups are recyclable and made of corn
- Providing recyclable Heatsheets for runners
- By making recycling readily available at the post race festivities
- Supplying water and food in compostable serving products
- Promoting cycling to the event by offering secure bike parking in Bushnell Park for all participants, spectators, and volunteers
- Ensuring spectators can use public transportation to get to the race
- All 5K, half marathon, and full marathon finishers receive a reusable water bottle in the finish chute
- 100% of all water supplied on the course will be provided by either businesses and residences via potable water hoses. Eliminating over 6,500 gallons of bottled water, and more importantly, over 1300 plastic containers and their associated transportation costs.
PRESENTING GREEN SPONSOR
With the goal of becoming the most sustainable athletic event in the country, the Hartford Marathon has named former title sponsor United Technologies as their Presenting Green Sponsor. Since 2010, UTC has been promoting endeavors to make the marathon greener and more sustainable.
In 2008 the Hartford Marathon was selected as one of five seedling races in the U.S. by The Council for Responsible Sport (CRS) to take part in a pilot program which will establish standards and processes for a sustainability certification for athletic events. CRS certifies events that follow strict guidelines and incorporate environmental responsibility into their events. For certification standards, visit www.councilforresponsiblesport.org
As a result of the Hartford Marathon's participation in the 2008 ReSport Pilot Program and efforts to produce sporting events more responsibly, the Hartford Marathon earned Gold certification from the Council for Responsible Sport.
THE WATER BUBBLER
Created in 2007 by United Technologies Corporation engineers, the Water Bubbler has been refreshing finishers and making the Hartford Marathon “greener” ever since. The Water Bubbler, a 40-foot long, multi person drinking fountain, allows runners to refresh in the finish chute, without the use wax cups or plastic bottles. We’ve estimated that since its inception, the “bubbler” has saved over 60,000 plastic bottles from local landfills.
The Hartford Marathon is partnering up with NativeEnergy for its carbon offset needs. Together we will help fight global warming with renewable energy services. Please consider doing your part to offset your travel carbon used by adding a donation with your entry. All donations will purchase carbon travel offsets. For more on the program, visit nativeenergy.com
How many pairs of used sneakers are taking up space in your closet? Consider recycling them at your nearest NIKE store and help create a new playground, soccer field or track for a deserving town in the US.
The Hartford Marathon is working in conjunction with NIKE to collect old sneakers for recycling. The recycled shoes, called NIKE GRIND, are turned into sports surfaces for basketball, tennis, soccer, football, running tracks and playgrounds. It takes the amount of rubber from 75,000 pairs of sneakers to produce each field and the best part is the sneakers do not end up in landfills or burned at the trash-to-energy plants.
Any brand of athletic shoe may be recycled as long as there are no metal eyelets, cleats or spikes. Shoes must be clean, dry and not tied together.
For more information and to find a local NIKE store near you, we encourage you to go to nikereuseashoe.com
COMPOSTING WITH UCONN
In 2013, the Hartford Marathon teamed up with the University of Connecticut to minimize the amount of waste created in Bushnell Park at the post-race festivities. Students from the EcoHusky Club and EcoHouse Learning Community manned each waste station and educated finishers, participants, and volunteers on how to compost their food scraps. At the end of the day, collections from the event were brought to the Knox Parks Foundation, a Hartford based “greening” organization, focused on sustainable community projects and education. To learn more about any of these programs, please visit: ecohusky.uconn.edu | lc.uconn.edu/communities/ecohouse/ | knoxparks.org
RUN ORANGE, LIVE GREEN
Whether you're out for a leisurely jog or racing for a personal record, running is enjoyed best with clean air and a healthy environment. That's why the Hartford Marathon is committed to becoming as clean and "green" as possible. One important goal of the Hartford Marathon is to reduce its carbon footprint and promote, educate and encourage all participants, volunteers and spectators to do the same.
Here are just a few examples of how you can help keep the environment healthy on race day and every other day of the week:
- Car pool to a race or work. Better yet, try occasionally running or cycling to work!
- Use refillable water bottles when you’re exercising.
- Hold onto those wrappers! Dispose of in clearly marked containers along the course.
- Buy sports drinks in bulk to conserve on packaging and recycle those bottles.
- Seek out events that make an effort to be greener or raise money to support environmentally friendly causes.