While it’s not quite warm enough to take a dip in local waters (unless you’re a lot more daring than us), you can support the aquatic oases that are located on the East End by taking part in this picturesque jog.
On Saturday, May 14th, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County is presenting its 2nd annual Back to the Bays 5K. The race will start at Cedar Beach County Park at 9 a.m. Participants will make their way through a scenic course that features stunning views of the Peconic Bay and its tributaries during the 5K, which also ends at Cedar Beach County Park.
“Our first annual Back to the Bays 5K was a great success and we are looking forward to our second annual event,” shared Kimberly Barbour, Marine Program Outreach Manager of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County. “After the 5K we invite racers, spectators, and the general public to check out our Marine Center Open House from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and meet our researchers and educators. Our facility is also located at Cedar Beach in Southold, where the race will start and finish.”
Once runners have completed the course, they can join their friends and family for an Open House and Family Fun Day at the Suffolk County Marine Environmental Learning Center (3690 Cedar Beach Road, Southold). Attendees will visit with local experts, explore CCE’s Shellfish Hatchery and Touch Tank Room, check out CCE’s marine and coastal plant greenhouse, learn how to grow you own shellfish with CCE’s SPAT Program, and much more. “This free event will be fun and informative and feature tours of our shellfish hatchery and coastal plant greenhouse, plenty of activities for the kids including fish printing and art + science integration projects, and an opportunity to learn how you can help give ‘back to the bays’ by getting involved with the work of CCE Marine Program,” she added.
Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County Marine Program’s Back to the Bays Initiative is a collaboration of scientific research and restoration efforts that include public involvement campaigns and stewardship initiatives. Through this program residents, school groups, and the community are offered educational and hands-on opportunities that assist CCE’s science-based efforts to protect and enhance water quality of the area’s bays, rebuild coastal and marine habitat and create resilient shorelines, and restore and enhance populations of commercially and recreationally important finfish and shellfish.
Proceeds from the 5K will directly support the marine and coastal habitat restoration, shellfish enhancement, and youth education programming carried out by CCE’s Back to the Bays Initiative.
The entry fee is $25 for general registration and $20 for Back to the Bays Members.
For more information, visit ccesuffolk.org.