Welcome to The Environmental Conservancy of North Port And Surrounding Areas 5K Run/1K Walk at the Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park in North Port!
The Myakkahatchee Creek Environmental Park was acquired by the City of North Port in 1989 with two Florida Recreation Development Assistance Program grants. The name Myakkahatchee comes from the Seminole language: "miarca" meaning "big water" and "hatchee" alluding to "river". A true “Blackwater Creek,” the water in the Creek is stained a brown color by the leaves, roots, and detritus decaying in and around it, making a transparent water that is darkly stained resembling black tea (aka tannin-stained).
The 5K run will take you through almost all of the trails in park (Yellow Trail, White Trail, Red Trail and one of the two Maintenance Trails); see the course map on this website for more details. The 1K walk is still in the planning stage; details to be announced soon.
Stands of slash pine and sabal palm and an abundance of live oaks of varying size and age will keep you company and shaded as you travel through. Wild coffee with its brilliant red berries are abundant, as are saw palmetto that glow beautifully when the sun shines through their fronds. Airplants, moss and lichen of various sizes and types color the oak branches/trunks and palm trunks. Ferns glow almost a neon green along the Creek. Wading birds in the depression marsh area of the White Trail are likely; look for their white feathers through the vegetation as you go by. On the Maintenance Trail the wide open sky will likely be providing a beautiful cloud show while you run/walk. The Yellow Trail takes you right through a Creek arm in one place (with little to no water at this time of year and a high spot to travel over). BONUS: there are Bald Cypress in the park - let us know if you see them! Also look for what we've named the "Tree of Life" - a massive live oak with its root system exposed along the Creek.
CAUTION: trails are maintained but preserved in their natural state. You may find uneven surfaces, leaves, branches, roots and other elements typical of this type of environment. Please wear appropriate closed-toe footwear and exercise outdoor-activity caution.
We encourage you to stay post-race to visit both our 5K/1K Event Sponsors and a "Wellness Forest" featuring The Caregiver Connection Coalition of Sarasota/Charlotte Counties whose members will be providing interactive activities and information about wellness and self-care (see the "Wellness Forest" section below for further details). We hope you always include the outdoors as a part of your "take care of you" regimen!
Runners/Walkers under age 8 can participate in the run/walk free of charge.
Walk-In Same-Day Registrations will be available the day of the race/walk until 7:30 am. We will have race QR codes posted for same day registrants who are paying with a credit card. Please bring your Runsignup login and password if you have one for same day registration.
Leashed dogs are permitted in accordance with park rules.
One water station at the 1.5 mile mark of the 5K will be provided and will also be available at the Finish Line. Walkers, please bring your own water to enjoy along your walk route.
Race Shirts are included with registration. IN-PERSON awards and post-race water/snacks will be given out (see the Race Shirts & Awards section below).
PACKET PICK-UP: Location/date to be announced soon.
CHECK IN ON RACE DAY: Please plan to check in for the 5K run by 7:30 am and for the 1K walk by 7:45 am.
DIRECTIONS: Take Exit 182 from I-75 and head East. Follow Sumter Blvd. to Tropicaire Blvd. Turn left on Tropicaire Blvd. and turn right on Reisterstown Road. The park is at the curve of Reisterstown Road on the right.
PARKING: Parking is available within the park or along Reisterstown Road/Estates Drive. Please refrain from parking on the residential side of Reisterstown Road/Estates Drive.
All runners/walkers are encouraged to follow the most current COVID-19 CDC Guidelines that are in place on the day of the event.
We truly ARE in a race to conserve. More than 1,000 people are now moving to Florida each and every day and hundreds to thousands of acres of land are being completely cleared not just locally in our neighborhoods, but Statewide, to accommodate our growing population daily; this threatens the very being of our wildlife, endangered species, flora and trees at the same time.
All of the trees and plants you will see in the park are the same as those being removed in our neighborhoods daily to make way for development. Few to none are saved/protected or planted back.
We hope that in visiting this natural park you will be inspired to learn more about the natural environment in your neighborhood, plant back native trees and plants that once grew on your land, conserve native trees or plants if you are planning to build a home, and begin or continue to support our efforts to protect similar natural greenspace in our neighborhoods.
Proceeds from this event will be utilized toward future land acquisition purchases. If you'd like to provide the gift of a donation in support of our mission as well, please visit the Donate tab of this website.
The Environmental Conservancy of North Port, Inc. dba The Environmental Conservancy of North Port And Surrounding Areas is a 501c3 nonprofit corporation. To learn more about us visit our website www.ecnorthport.com find us on Instagram @northportconservancy or Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ECnorthport.
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