On Tuesday, Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) announced that the 8th Annual New Year’s Day #FITDC Fresh Start 5K, originally scheduled to be held in person at Anacostia Park will instead be conducted throughout the District, with runners connected online.
The announcement comes as the District reports record COVID case rates. On Monday, DC reported 1,868 cases with a weekly case rate of 1915 per 100,000 residents. That’s 20 times higher than the weekly case rate a month prior.
The omicron variant of the virus spread quickly through the region; the District has seen nearly 1000 percent surge in cases over the past two weeks. Demand for testing has correspondingly increased, with many residents reporting long lines at public PCR test sites and scarcity of Dc’s “Test Yourself” at-home kits, which are assembled by volunteers.
Residents can participate in the ‘Fresh Start’ run outdoors. However, the District wants to discourage a gathering of thousands of people at one location. Instead, they’re encouraging participants to run or walk in their neighborhood wearing their shirts or bibs.
Participants who were already signed up or who sign up this week can still pick up a free #FITDC Fresh Start t-shirt, custom 5K bib, and medal outside of the following DPR locations on Wednesday, Dec. 29 and Thursday, Dec. 30 from 10:00 a.m. – 4 p.m.:
- Columbia Heights Community Center (1480 Girard Street NW)
- Edgewood Recreation Center (301 Franklin Street NE)
- Deanwood Community Center (1350 49th Street NE)
- Wilson Aquatic Center (4551 Fort Drive NW)
Participants are encouraged to wear their shirts and bibs on New Year’s Day as they run/walk and share pictures and selfies on social media using the #FreshStart5K.