Lace up for the 5k for Forest!

Charlotte Tagupa (left) and Sonja Peterson (right) out on a run in preparation for the upcoming 5k for Forest.
Charlotte Tagupa (left) and Sonja Peterson (right) out on a run in preparation for the upcoming 5k for Forest.

When Hanover High School closed down in mid-March due to COVID-19, many HHS clubs were put on hold. This setback did not stop two passionate members of Environmental Club, Sonja Peterson (’21) and Charlotte Tagupa (’22). Over the course of the summer months, these two environmentalists devised a way to help the Earth while remaining at a safe distance. In collaboration with the nonprofit organization Friends of the Earth, a virtual 5k will be taking place the weekend of September 25th. Known as the “5k for Forest,” this socially distanced race will get people outdoors and moving, as well as raise awareness and money for a worthy cause. All profits of the 5k will go towards the Friends of the Earth’s efforts to protect the planet.

Peterson and Tagupa are both runners on the Hanover Cross Country team and felt that a distanced 5k was the perfect way to combine their two passions while at the same time following all guidelines and safety precautions. After much research into various planet-protection nonprofits, the two decided that Friends of the Earth’s mission suited their interests perfectly. As stated on their website, Friends of the Earth fight for a more healthy and just world by protecting the planet through direct action and pushing for policy change. If all goes smoothly with next week’s race, Peterson and Tagupa are looking forward to planning similar events in the future, possibly opening their donations to other charitable organizations. 

Runners of all skill levels are encouraged to join the 5k for Forrest. To participate in the event, runners are to run any 5k at any pace the weekend of the 25th-27th. Racers may send in their times if they would like. There is a minimum fee of $5 to sign-up; however, other donations are greatly appreciated. All participants will receive a bib and a sticker, available for pick on the Dartmouth Green from 5:30-7:30 on September 24th and 25th. The top ten finishers will receive a tee-shirt if they choose to send in their times, available for pickup on the Dartmouth Green from 5:30-7:30 on September 29th. 

Thanks to Sonja Peterson and Charlotte Tagupa, efforts to involve the Hanover community in creating a greener Earth don’t have to stop with the new social distancing guidelines. The 5k for Forrest is just the first step in spreading awareness and increasing involvement in Hanover’s environmental program. 

For more information about Friends of the Earth and the work they do to protect our planet, visit 

To sign up for the 5k, fill out the following Google Form: Google Form 

All sign-up fees and other donations can be directed here: GoFundMe 

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