Wednesday, March 19, 2014

SHAPE Diva Dash comes to the aid of flood-ravaged Lyons, CO

Diva Dash women’s obstacle run comes to aid flood-ravaged Lyons, CO

Event proceeds will support rebuilding parks and trails, as women take on an exciting and empowering adventure through the community

Lyons, CO – March 11, 2012 - When the SHAPE Diva Dash women’s obstacle run returns to Lyons on May 10, ‘The community will be ready for the excitement of it’s first big event after the flood,“ says Dave Cosgrove, Director of Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Events for the Town of Lyons.  We are very ready to move forward with the rebuilding of our community”

Lyons is a small town you may know for its trails, beer, and festivals.  You also probably heard about the 500-year flood that took place last September. “We were decimated by the flood and although we’re making progress, there is still a considerable way to go. We are very happy to be working with an event that will bring donations, people, and smiles to our community. “

Organizers of the SHAPE Diva Dash, one of the biggest women’s obstacle run series in the country, are based in Boulder CO. ‘This is our hometown event and Lyons is like our backyard playground.” , said Diva Dash founder, Josh Kravetz. We want to do everything we can to help Lyons recover and restore the parks and trails that  Boulder County loves so much.” The Adventure Fit crew that produces the event has reconfigured the course  from last year and found creative solutions to avoid areas damaged by the flooding. They created a 3-mile loop with space for 12+ obstacles. The school and residential communities were supportive of the event and willing to collaborate with Adventure Fit to create a great route.

Cosgrove believes that the Diva Dash’s return to Lyons raises awareness that “Lyons still has huge needs. The Parks and Recreation Department lost all of its equipment when its building was washed away.  “ We were hit harder than other communities, and now we have fewer resources to deal with our recovery.” Lyons Parks and Recreation   will directly benefit from proceeds generated from the event. The Lyons Communtiy Foundation and Lyons Volunteers will be staffing  booths with  information about projects that have been completed and those that are forthcoming giving participants and spectators the opportunity to donate to several other worthy causes still needing funding in Lyons or  a chance to sign up to receive update emails or get involved with future flood rehabilitation.   

Thousands of women are expected to participate in the SHAPE Diva Dash obstacle run. The event consists of a 5K trail run filled with many fun and adventurous obstacles like an oversized teeter totter, Fireman Pole slide, and Rock Climb walls. Following the run is an after party sponsored by SHAPE Magazine and other partners including Oskar Blues Brewery, which will be the official beer sponsor. Chad Melis, of Oskar Blues is happy to help. ”Lyons is a town that is known for our festivals and fun times. The SHAPE Diva Dash coming to Lyons means that we are ready to get this party started again!”

About Lyons and its Parks:
The Town of Lyons has been devastated. In the early morning hours of September 12th, 2013, following several days of record rainfall totaling an astonishing 17 inches rain, the North and South St. Vrain Creeks, the confluence of which occurs in Bohn Park in Lyons, flooded their banks. Stream flows within the Town of Lyons crested above 19,500 CFS easily surpassing the previous record set in 1941. This is incredible considering typical stream flows for the St. Vrain average 67 CFS (USGS Data) for the month of September. With roads and bridges washed out or under water, the 2,050 residents of the Town of Lyons were cut off from the world and isolated on six different ‘islands’. The entire Town of Lyons began evacuation on September 13th, 2013 with the assistance of the National Guard. Every household and business was impacted as a result of flood waters, heavy rain, and/or destruction of infrastructure. All services including roads, bridges, access, water distribution, sewer collection, gas, electric, telephone, cell phones, cable, internet, gas stations, groceries, businesses, fire protection, law enforcement, bus service and ambulance were all simultaneously unavailable for a period of time-ranging from six to twelve weeks depending on the extent of the damage and ability to get services back online.

Lyons has been damaged beyond what it can afford. It is estimated that Lyons has sustained damages totaling nearly $50 million, including $5 million in temporary measures and $45 million in permanent work, which does not include insured public buildings or restoring the stream channel. This is staggering for a community that typically operates on less than a $1 million a year budget.

Lyons parks system was absolutely decimated. Nearly all community parks and facilities were affected in some way. It is estimated that of the 80 acres of developed/in-development community parkland, 39 acres were severely impacted. Unfortunately, the 39 acres impacted housed most of Lyons major park facilities. To date pre-flood damages to Lyons Parks and facilities is estimated at approximately $16Million. The following is a synopsis of park damages:

·       Of our nearly 5 miles of trails, only 1.2 miles have been unaffected by the flood. Most trails are completely gone or are inaccessible. This includes the destruction of Lyons main arterial trail, the St. Vrain Corridor Trail which served as Lyons major source of connectivity to neighborhoods, schools, parks, businesses and even Boulder County’s Picture Rock Trail in Heil Valley Ranch Open Space, Hall Ranch and other future regional connections.
·       Infrastructure to parks has been washed away; water, sewer, gas and electric will all have to be replaced to nearly all park facilities.
·       Athletic fields are buried under feet of cobble and debris. Irrigation provided to 5 of Lyons 6 athletic fields and most other irrigated portions of park areas is either gone or no longer functional.
·       Shelter facilities have been washed away and/or were flooded and no longer useable, including a historic WPA shelter located in Meadow Park.
·       Additional park features that are damaged or lost to flood damage include, among others: 14 whitewater features, 2 ponds, 2 pedestrian bridges, volleyball court/ice rink, batting cage, dog park river access, several parking lots, tent and RV camping facilities, picnic areas, 2 playgrounds, community garden, sheds and storage facilities, numerous benches, bleachers, signage and other park amenities that are associated with these park facilities.

FEMA and insurance will not make the Town whole again-we need your help!  Staff is working diligently on grants, in-kind donations and various other funding efforts available to us, but additional aid is still drastically needed.  Please help us to restore Lyons parks and make Lyons a recreation destination once again.  Help us reconstruct Lyons parks bigger and better and continue to offer quality parks and services to the residents and visitors of Lyons.  Thanks for your support!   

About Adventure Fit :  At Adventure Fit Inc, we live for fun outdoor adventures. Our passion shows in our work through every event, team, and experience we create. Founded on the slogan “Come out and Play!”, Adventure Fit has produced some of the country’s most popular participatory sporting events. Our events are not only fun and unique, they also have a deeper goal: to open the eyes of our participants to a world of greater social and environmental responsibility. We partner exclusively with companies that have sustainable business practices and give back to non-profits around the country.
About SHAPE:  SHAPE, the flagship brand of American Media, Inc.’s Women’s Active Lifestyle Group, reaches 6.2 million active readers and is number one in circulation, ad pages and 13 worldwide editions. SHAPE connects with women throughout their daily lives with its innovative brand extensions, including online, email, mobile efforts and award-winning consumer events.
For 30 years, SHAPE has been the "how to look and feel amazing" resource of active, confident women everywhere. We help our readers achieve balance in all areas of their life by providing trusted wellness information, sophisticated style editorial and steps for positive change in every issue and monthly on  We not only inspire women to set life-improving goals, but also provide the tools necessary to reach them.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

An inspiring story

We received the following message from Donna Loring Thayer, a participant at last year's Boston Diva Dash. It was her first event and it had a big impact on her. Here is what she had to say:

"Dear Diva Dash,
Last year at your "Boston" (Marshfield) location I participated in the DIva Dash. Not only was it my first ever race but it was also my 51st birthday. I started training months before by setting a goal of running for just one minute straight and then eventually made it up to running just under three miles. I struggled a bit the day of the Diva Dash but I finished and had such an amazing sense of pride. I am again registered for the Diva Dash in Marshfield this September. My experience with the fun and positive atmosphere of your event encouraged me to continue and I can now run for an hour straight and have participated in a few 5Ks.
I just wanted to thank you for a great event and to encourage you to post pictures of all kinds of women- older and younger, so that people like me can continue to feel inspired that they too can do this. Thank you!"

Thank YOU Donna! This is why we (Adventure Fit Inc) do what we do. We love to create fun, active experiences, that truly change lives. We're so happy that we were able to make you happy! Congrats to you Donna!