Interested in hosting your own color powder run, but not sure how? Color powder is a great way to boost any event, particularly fundraisers for schools, churches, and more! Check out this page for ideas, tips, and tricks to make sure you throw the best color powder run yet!
What is a color powder run?
Color powder runs are a great way to bring the community together! They originate from a festival in India called Holi, and later was nicknamed "Festival of Colors." Originally, this type of festival was used to thank the Indian God's for abundant winter harvests and to celebrate the coming of Spring. This celebration is used in many ways today, but usually is celebrated in the spring and summer.
Color powder is a great way to add flare to any length of race, festival, or party. Essentially, a color powder run is like any other run, except that participants get covered in colorful powder by the end! Most of these races range anywhere from less than a mile long to a 5K or even a 10K race. Throughout the race, hosts will have 2-4 stations where colored powder is thrown onto participants.
How do you organize a color powder run?
At each color station have at least 3-4 volunteers at the ready with 5 gallon buckets of colored powder. At most races, one color is thrown at each station, but feel free to get creative! You can combine colors at stations to get even more diverse color patterns on participants. Just know that you will usually end up using more powder if you throw multiple colors at each station (that is, if you want to make sure everyone gets covered!).
To throw color powder you can use a variety of things. Most people opt for something small like paper Dixie cups or something similar in size. Be sure not to throw powder too high, you don't want to get it on participants faces! Always aim for their chest or lower to ensure you don't make anybody inhale powder and cough.
Why not start the fun right off the bat? You can start races with a small 100g Packet of powder for each participant to throw when the race starts. Depending on the number of participants you have, you can stagger your start times. Try not to have more than 50-100 racers start at once depending on how wide your start gate is. You can break runners up into waves of 25, 50, or even 100. Be sure to stagger your waves by 1-2 minutes to give racers some space (and your volunteers at color stations time to restock their powder for the next wave).
The end of the race is where you'll get the best photos, so make sure to have photographers stationed there! Once your runners cross the finish line, give them another 100g Packet of powder to start a powder fight! This is where you'll get photos like the one below.
At the end of your race is also where you'll want to station vendors, a photo booth, and any food/beverage services you are planning to provide. Be sure to provide a blow off station so racers can clean off before getting back into their cars.
Blow Off Stations
Blow off stations are areas that have fans to blow powder off of runners before leaving the event. If you have a power source, you can use stand up or hand held fans, electric leaf blowers, or even box fans on the ground. If you don't have a power source you may have to get creative. You can bring a generator or find any gas powered leaf blowers or fans that you can find.
Don't forget to provide water for your racers! Depending on the season and length of your run, you may want to include anywhere from 1-3 water stations. At the very least, be sure to include one in the middle and at the end of your race. Water stations don't have to be fancy, a large jug with cold water and Dixie cups will do! If you anticipate having a large number of racers, you may want to pre-fill Dixie cups with water and have them out on a table at each station so you're ready when lots of racers show up at once.
Pro tip: Avoid putting water stations right next to powder stations. You don't want to accidentally throw powder in the racer's water!
Post Race Clean Up
Don't forget to clean up when you're done with your race! Luckily, with our Premium Holi Color Powder clean up is easy! None of our powder will stain, dye, or damage anything it gets on. Simply sweep up all the powder you can and dispose of it in a trash can. Any powder left on the ground can easily be washed down with a hose. Make sure to do a garbage sweep of the area so you don't leave anything behind. Pro tip: Either provide cheap towels, or have participants bring towels to put over their car seats for the drive home. You'll want to recommend that they shake off (or visit a blow off station) as much powder as they can, but some residue may be left on their clothes, skin, or hair. Clothes can be washed in a normal cycle, and any powder that gets in participant's hair will wash out easily.
If you are going to have registration at your event, you'll want to have your registration table open for an hour or two before your race starts. Make sure to leave yourself a break that's at least 30 min to 1 hour long between registration closing and your event beginning. You don't want late registrants or any hick-ups (every race has them!), delaying your start time. If you are going to provide swag bags (see note on those below), make sure to have them assembled and ready to go ahead of time to make registration run more smoothly. If you are going to have registration available online, make sure to close registration the night before so you don't have any last minute registrations on race day.
Other Things to Consider
Restrooms: If your venue doesn't have restrooms, don't forget to order some port-o-potties! Research a local company and notify them at least a week in advance of your race. Based on your projected race size, they should be able to help you decide how many restrooms you need to provide. Don't forget to get 1 or 2 ADA (handi-cap accessible) units as well!
Trash Receptacles: Don't forget to bring some large trash bins and extra trash bags on race day! You'll want to place a few at each water and color station and make sure to have extras around the finish line.
Parking/Shuttles: Depending on where your start and finish lines are, you may need to account for parking. If your start gate is far away from your finish line, you may want to instruct participants to meet at the finish line and then provide shuttles up to the start gate.
Permits/Legal Requirements: Don't forget that any event taking place on land that isn't privately owned will require a permit. Permit prices will vary depending on where your race is and how long it lasts. If using state owned land, permits can take quite a while to obtain so make sure to plan ahead and get the permit process started asap. Also, don't forget to have every participant, volunteer, and event coordinator sign a liability release form! This will protect you in case anything goes wrong!
Safety: You may want to consider having an EMT/ambulance on site depending on your race size. Some permitting agencies may also require this as part of the permit agreement. If you're putting a race on for charity, see if your local EMS station will provide a volunteer!
Social Media: Don't forget to create a fun hashtag for your participants to use when posting photos of your event! Feel free to use ours #PeacockPowder and tag us @peacockpowder to be featured on our page!
Frequently Asked Questions
How much powder do I need?
We recommend providing 1/2 pound to 1 full pound of powder per participant. Depending on how many color stations you plan to have, you may want to error on the side of more powder!
1-2 powder stations (1 color at each)= 1/2 lb of powder per participant
1-2 powder station (2+ colors at each) 1 lb of powder per participant
3+ powder stations (1 color at each) = 1 lb of powder per participant
If adding any additional stations, or colors at each station add 1/2 lb powder per participant. Checkout our Wholesale Powder Pricing to get the best deal on powder! All orders over $300 qualify for free shipping, plus we'll price match any competitors!
Should I offer timing in my color run?
Most color runs aren't timed, they are simply for fun! Adding timing chips to races adds quite a bit more planning, money, and headache. Suggest that participants time themselves with a stop watch or phone timer if they want to track their times.
Can I call my run "Color Run"?
No. The term "color run" has been patented and putting that in your race name may result in a fine. Come up with other creative ways to name your race: Holi Color Fun Run, or Color Fun Run, Color (charity name or organization name) Run, etc.
What kind of powder do they use in the Color Run?
Most color powder is a combination of corn starch and color dye.
Is Holi Color Powder Washable?
Our Premium Holi Color Powder won't stain, dye, damage any clothing, hair, or ground that it comes in contact with!