Red Dress Run: 'Drinking club with a running problem'
BAARLO - Baarlo turns red on August 17. Then a party of about 500 men and women in red dresses walks and runs through the village. The Red Dress Run, which came over from America, is a first for this Limburg.
BY GERTIE DRIESSEN - TRANSLATION BY DESERT QUEEN
No, they are not a serious running club. “Actually, we are a drinking club with a running problem,” chuckles Hans Dijkhuizen from The Hague. He is one of the founders of the Dutch branch of the Hash House Harriers, an international group of running clubs that is more about socializing than about running. sporting element.
The Harriers and Harriettes are certainly not competitive when it comes to women. “Whoever finishes first -men are also allowed to participate- is usually punished", reports Dijkhuizen. "He/she will be given extra packs for the next run. A heavy backpack or something."
The Dutch Hash House Harriers are organizing a European hash weekend in Baarlo, and had decided to precede it this time by another worldwide known phenomenon: the Red Dress Run, in which all participants, both female and male, show up in a red dress.
The Red Dress tradition originates in Long Beach, California. In 1987, a certain Donna Rhinehart by chance came across a run by the local Harriers and spontaneously decided to participate. She happened to wear a red dress and ditto high heels. She immediately made waves as the lady in red and the following year hundreds of Harriers wore a red dress. A new tradition was born, to which a local charity was also linked at Rhinehart's instigation.
For this Baarlo Red Dress event, the choosen charity is the foundation "Baarlo Leeft" that is run by Piet van der Haas. He will receive a check after the run on the Markt, where the red dresses are welcomed by the brass band around 9 p.m. The group will start at 8 p.m. at Kasteel De Berckt and will walk towards the Maas, along the weir and from there to the Markt.
It is not the first time that the Harriers and Harriettes have chosen the village for a European hash, although they have never walked around in red dresses. De Berckt is an ideal place because, according to Dijkhuizen, there are no less than thirteen bars. "Then we don't have to leave the house for the pub crawl, the pub crawl that is planned on Friday."
Going on Saturday the fanatics among the roughly 550 guests who are expected from all over Europe really run or walk, while the rest stick to a walk through Venlo.
Sunday is the closing hang over run, "because walking is the best way to get rid of your hangover," says Dijkhuizen.