The distinct red and white stripped outfit of a very familiar character was seen throughout the streets of downtown Colorado Springs on Saturday.
Approximately 3,500 “Waldos” gathered outside of the Pioneer’s Museum for the 4th annual Waldo Waldo 5K. It is a benefit to support local charities that lead projects to restore the Waldo Canyon burn scar after a devastating fire in 2012.
“Underlying it all, there’s a somewhat serious cause because the money raised today is going to support some of the very trails people love,” said Susan Davies, Executive Director of Trails and Open Space Coalition, one of two beneficiaries of the event.
“We’re all here today because we care about our community and wanted to give back to where we live and work,” said participant Sharon Branham.
Wearing identical outfits was a fun experience for the participants, but many of them saw it as a symbol of teamwork and unification.
“We’re kind of a family in a sense,” said Branham.
“We personally were victims of getting evacuated from the Waldo Fire, so to have money go towards restoring it is fantastic,” said Courtney Sikora, another participant.
The money raised at Waldo Waldo also supports disaster relief, fire recovery, and outdoor recreation in the Colorado Springs area.
“We epitomize the healthy lifestyle. People move here because they love our trails, they love our mountains, and so it’s great to go out, dress up in silly costumes, and celebrate our trails,” said Davies.