Abacoa & Alton Neighbors - April 2021

Els for Autism Foundation will host the second annual Roots & Ruts Off-Road 5K and Family Fun Run on April 24, 2021 to celebrate Autism Awareness Month. Taking place along the first certified autism-friendly trail in Florida, the race is both a fundraiser to support people with autism, and a celebration of the strides our community continues to make in autism awareness and acceptance. “We are thrilled to be hosting our second annual Roots & Ruts 5K during Autism Awareness Month,” Liezl Els, co-founder of Els for Autism Foundation said. “These have been tough times for everyone, and we are looking forward to bringing our local community together in a safe, fun and healthy way, all while bringing more awareness to our mission.” The race will begin from The Els Center of Excellence campus in Jupiter, Florida, and will utilize COVID precautions, such as implementing staggered start times, or “waves” to avoid congestion and maintain distance at the start line and throughout the racecourse. Participants will select their wave start time based on their mile pace and skill level. The first wave of three waves will begin at 7:30 a.m. from the campus, and meander through the adjacent North Jupiter Flatwoods Natural Area where participants will enjoy the beautiful scenery of native Florida habitats. During each wave, five runners will be directed to the corral and started every 20 seconds. The entry fee is $35 and includes a t-shirt and finisher medal. The entry fee for children 14 years or younger is $25 and includes a shirt and finisher medal. The first 50 people to enter will receive a hat with the 5K logo. Alternatively, for a donation of $10, runners anywhere in the world can opt-in to a Virtual Run and receive a finishers certificate after submitting their results. In 2019, the North Jupiter Flatwoods was declared an autism-friendly area by the Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD). Developed improvements to the area include .5 miles of ADA paved trails, visual signage, benches for break areas, a swing, physical barriers and sensory stations. Autism Awareness Month is observed globally each year in April. With 1 in 54 children diagnosed with autism every year, the Foundation sincerely thanks everyone for helping to make a difference in the lives of individuals with autism. Visit www.elsforautism.org/roots-and-ruts/ to register for the Roots & Ruts Off Road 5K or become an event sponsor. CHARITY SPOTLIGHT 2nd Annual Roots & Ruts Off Road 5K in Jupiter to Benefit Els for Autism Foundation By Nicole Ehrlich A p r i l 2 0 2 1 | Abacoa &Alton N E I G H B O R S 39