Got class? Color Run to cap Homecoming Week


Photo by courtesy of Dylan Falces

The colors are here! ASKSM has been hard at work preparing for next week’s Homecoming Week color run. Get ready to get messy–all in the name of spirit and unity.

Kamehameha Schools Maui will be the first high school on Maui to hold a color run on the last day of Homecoming Week,  Sept. 23.

Sounds like lots of fun, but the school officers and the student activities coordinator have spent lots of hours and a fair amount of money to make it happen.

I hope everyone has a good time.

— Kūlia Fernandez, ASKSM president

“I hope everyone has a good time,” said Kūlia Fernandez, Associated Students of Kamehameha Schools Maui president.

The planning started during the summer when a room full of student officers brainstormed ideas for events to do before homecoming that would increase spirit and unity while still recognizing each of the classes.

It’s unclear who first said it, but suddenly the words “color run” were thrown out into the air, and weeks of preparation for the run started soon afterward.

Before the details of the color run could be ironed out, the event idea first had to be approved by Kamehameha Schools’ legal and risk management departments, located in Honolulu.

The risk management department looked at anything that could affect the safety of students during the color run and proposed or approved solutions.

As a result, to reduce the risk of eye injuries, all students will be required to wear eye protection during the run–sunglasses are fine.  Either you can bring your own sunglasses or use one of the pairs the school has purchased for all students.

For students concerned about inhaling the colored powder, filter masks will also be available. Wearing a mask is optional, but all students must wear covered shoes.

This was just a start.

Last week, student government officers busily packed plastic bags with small amounts of color to give to students on the day of the color run. They will be given their class color to throw together so that they can take pictures covered in their class color.

“We ordered 125 pounds of color per class,” said Ms. Naomi Ashman, student activities coordinator.

That means that in total, the school purchased 500 pounds of colored powder, which cost several thousand dollars, but allows for three-fourths of a pound of color on each student body.

Students will run around campus going from station to station where teachers and staff will splash them with color.

The colors being sprayed are red, purple, green, and pink. They are meant to be each class’s color; however, the freshmenʻs color, gray, is not available, so they will be represented by pink.

The colors are a cornstarch powder mixed with dye, which is safe to get on your skin; however, since it is mixed with dye, it may stain clothing, so avoid wearing your favorite pair of sneakers unless you want them to get stained.

For the run, students may either wear their white homecoming shirt, which will be distributed to all students at lunch on Thursday,  or another white shirt so that they can save their homecoming shirt to go to the football game later. Students will not be allowed to wear clothes with the colored powder to the game.

Girls must wear a one-piece bathing suit, sports bra, or additional t-shirt under the white shirt because the shirt will be getting wet when rinsing off.

The route for the run starts at the rear entrance of Kanaʻiaupuni and ends at the practice field below Keʻeaumokupāpaʻiaheahe.  It should take an average of 15 minutes to complete, if you are walking.

Each class will make the run together at 15-minute intervals, one class at a time. The order of the classes is a secret and will be determined on Friday.

Color Run route the students will be following.
Color Run route the students will be following.

With safety and legal concerns cleared, the money spent, the shirts designed, and the colors packed, there was still clean-up to organize.

After the run there will be water stations in order to get clean. After many meetings and suggestions, the operations department and student government decided to set up hoses and buckets and make a long outdoor shower out of punctured PVC pipe segments so that many students can clean off at once.

The locker rooms will be locked, so no one will be able to shower or change in there; this is to prevent a colorful mess indoors. Students will need to clean off and towel off before entering bathrooms to change into clean clothes.

The powder is meant to be washed off, but if you want to fix the color to your shirt and make it permanent, wear an additional t-shirt underneath, and click here to read a method of saving the colors on your shirt.

The same website, Impractical Composition, has some excellent tips on preparing for the color run. Read their advice by clicking here.

Bus riders must be clean before entering buses, so be sure to bring a change of school-appropriate clothes, and don’t forget to come back for the homecoming carnival taking place on the practice field later, before the football game.

Bottom line, bring lots of junky clothes and shoes, clothes and shoes to change into, towels, and plastic bags (think about covering your car seats and stashing your wet, colored clothes). It’s gonna get messy!