ARIZONA STATE PARKS: For Immediate Release
Managing and conserving Arizona’s natural, cultural and recreational resources for the benefit of the people, both in our Parks and through our Partners. FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Ellen Bilbrey at (602) 542-1996 or (602) 228-8518 or Monica Enriquez at (602) 542-6997. Contact by Email: pio(at)azstateparks.gov
(Phoenix, Arizona - August 20, 2014) - Experience the inaugural 5K Trail Run & Kids Fun Run at Kartchner Caverns State Park on Saturday, September 27, 2014. Come out to run, then stay to learn about the bats, the guano, and preservation of the cave. There will also be a post-race festival complete with awards ceremony and fun activities for the entire family. (See full event schedule below). Cave tours will also be available but should be reserved in advance.
The 5K Trail Run is a unique course that will travel through the rugged desert terrain of the Sonoran/Chihuahuan Deserts. The run will include multiple sets of stairs and allow participants to run along areas that are normally closed to the public. Runners will enjoy the majestic views of the entire San Pedro River Valley and the beautiful mountain ranges that surround the park. The entire course is above ground.
Registration can be completed at active.com. The registration fee is $25 and a t-shirt will be given to those who pre-register by August 31, 2014. The Kids Fun Run is free for kids aged 13 and younger. Registration for the Kids Run will be on the day of the event only. Parents must sign a waiver for kids to participate.
6:30 - 7:45 a.m.: Registration & Bib pickup
8 a.m: 5K Trail Run starts (ages 14 and up)
9:30 a.m: 1 Mile Free Kids Fun Run starts (ages 13 and younger)
10 a.m: Award Ceremony for both races
The regular $6 park entrance fee is included with the registration. For more information visit AZStateParks.com. This event is sponsored and operated by the Friends of Kartchner Caverns State Park. The Park is located on Highway 90, nine miles south of I-10 near Benson, Ariz. Full hookup camping sites are available at a fee of $25.
Event volunteers are also needed to make this event a success! Those interested in helping out, should send an email to reservations(at)azstateparks.gov or call (520) 586-4118 (please note: this phone number is for event volunteer registration only).
There are two guided tours inside the cave at Kartchner Caverns that are currently open (the Big Room tour runs October through April). The Rotunda/Throne Room Tour is half of a mile in length and takes approximately an hour and a half to complete. The Rotunda/Throne Room Tour is $23 for those aged 14 and older. It is $13 for youths aged 7-13 and free for those younger than 6. The new Headlight and Helmet Tour allows visitors to experience the cave as the discoverers did in 1974 using only the light provided by the headlamp on your helmet. This tour is currently offered only on Saturdays, is a half-a-mile long and takes an hour and 15 minutes to complete. Note: Headlight and Helmet Tours are not available for children younger than 10 years of age. The Headlight and Helmet Tour is a specialty tour and is $30 for those aged 10 and older.
The Discovery Center facility contains exhibits on cave formations, cave life, hydrology and history. In the Tenen-Tufts Theater, a video presentation (15 minutes long) plays twice an hour. The program highlights the discovery aspect of the cave. The Gift Shop offers a wide array of cave related and southwestern themed souvenirs, gifts and practical items to meet the needs of travelers. The Bat Cave Cafe is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. for dining while at the Park. There are hiking trails for the beginner to advanced hiker and a large, modern campground adjacent to the Whetstone Mountains.
Reservations for camping or cave tours can be made 24-hours a day at AZStateParks.com or by calling (520) 586-2283 between 8am and 5pm (Mountain Standard Time) seven days per week. Reservations are highly recommended for all cave tours. Cave Tour tickets must be picked up AT LEAST 1 hour prior to your scheduled tour time.For information about all 27 Arizona State Parks, the Trails and Off-Highway Vehicle Programs and State Historic Preservation Office call (602) 542-4174 or Visit AZStateParks.com. Campsite or cave tour reservations can be made online at AZStateParks.com or by calling the Reservation Call Center at (520) 586-2283. Open 7 days a week, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. MST. Follow AZStateParks on Twitter and Facebook.