More than 2,000 turtle supporters showed up at the Coney Island boardwalk for the Wildlife Conservation Society’s first Run for the Wild in Brooklyn. The 5K event to raise money to save sea turtles, their habitats, and other wildlife.
“It’s inspiring to see so many people running, jogging, and walking along the Coney Island boardwalk to help save animals that live in the ocean just a few hundred yards away,” said John F. Calvelli, WCS Executive Vice President of Public Affairs in a press release. “We thank everyone who made this first-ever WCS Run for the Wild in Brooklyn a tremendous success. There was a lot of terrific turtle support here today.”
This year’s winner was David Bosch from Sunnyside, N.Y., who crossed the finish line at 17:47.
The top three men and top three women finishers were:
Fiona Bayly from New York, N.Y. – 18:26
Lauren Carter from Forest Hills, N.Y. – 19:11
Cristina Breslin, Jersey City, N.J. – 21:09
David Bosch from Sunnyside, N.Y. – 17:47
Ray Cuadrado from Florham, N.Y. – 18:42
Chris Ellis from Yonkers, N.Y. – 18:57
The race began with the National Anthem sung by Staten Island rocker Therina Bella and followed with opening remarks from City Council Member Domenic M. Recchia, Jr., and Assembly Member Alec Brook-Krasny.
All proceeds from the WCS Run for the Wild will go to WCS conservation efforts to combat threats that plague this animal, including habitat loss and poaching.
The Wildlife Conservation Society works around the globe to save wildlife and wild places such as turtle species, which are in serious trouble. According to the WCS, though they have survived for about 220 million years and once roamed the Earth with the dinosaurs, half of all turtle and tortoise species are now threatened with extinction.
Participants were encouraged to seek donations and received Turtle Perks for their efforts. For $35 in donations, participants earned a WCS Run for the Wild water bottle. Those who raised $100 will get the water bottle plus a turtle plush. $250 will earn fundraisers the water bottle, turtle plush, and a WCS Run for the Wild hat. Those who raise $500 or more earn all of those prizes plus a sea lion kiss at the New York Aquarium. And the first 25 participants that raised $500 received a behind-the-scenes tour of the New York Aquarium and breakfast with the aquarium director for two following the run.