The Ascension Hash House Harriers St. Valentines Red Dress Run and Charity Ball. Ascension Island, South Atlantic.
Red Dress Run date: Saturday, February 1, 2014.
Want to hash a place most of your friends cannot even find on a map? Bring a red dress and come to the Ascension St. Valentines Red Dress Run and Charity Ball. Normally held the weekend closest to Valentines Day, in 2014 it was moved up to coincide with the celebration of the Hash’s 1500th run.
This year’s Red Dress Run will end up a beach hut overlooking one of the world’s most pristine beaches and will be catered by AIFC Spear and Game Fishing with a South African-style BBQ featuring grilled tuna, wahoo and dorado caught that morning.
The 2013 Red Dress Run had 33 participants from five countries while another 40 joined the post lube. This may not sound like many, but with an island population of fewer than 800, this represents a full 10 percent of the local population. Over 300 GBP was raised in 2013 for the Girl Guides of Ascension. This year’s charity is the Ascension Island Charity Fund, which provides funds for purchase of needed equipment for the local hospital.
Trails for the family-friendly Ascension Hash typically involve hiking over volcanic rock. Due to the terrain, the down-downs are not done at the circle checks, but are reserved for the end.
Situated on one of the most remote islands in the world, Ascension is part of the British Overseas Territories that also includes St. Helena and Tristan da Cunha. For the visiting hasher, Ascension provides unparalleled hiking and walking opportunities, from Green Mountain with its tropical Cloud Forest, and Letterbox Plateau which features dramatic volcanic sculptures and seabird colonies. There are 32 separate beaches. February is a particularity good time to visit Ascension because the annual Green Turtle migration is in full swing, and last year over 30,000 nests were logged on the island. Water temperatures are 28 C and world-class diving, snorkelling and fishing is available. Travel to Ascension is limited; for the best information please visit http://www.ascension-island.gov.ac/visiting-the-island/ or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Ascension Island Red Dress Run and Charity Ball was selected as one of the worlds Top Ten Red Dress Runs of 2014 by RedDressRuns.org. Qualifications for the top ten include hashpitality, support for charity, good organization and other qualities that make them unique.
An abbreviated version of this story appeared in the January – March 2014 edition of Harrier Magazine.