George - Getting to the church on time will be no problem for a group of Garden Route brides and grooms who will be taking on a quirky practice run down the aisle.

The Tramonto wedding dash has, over the past five years, become a firm favourite among fit and active couples getting ready for their big day and entails a 1km run with a twist.

Entry is free and the only requirement is that participants show up on the start line in their wedding attire.

While the distance is not much of a challenge for most athletes, reaching the finish, dubbed the “happy place”, with all the tools and accessories intact is another story.

“It is a lot of fun. Last year one of our top local athletes Lloyd Bosman came dressed in a wedding dress. He looked dazzling. We also had a man dressed in Voortrekker wedding attire,” organiser Daniel Raubenheimer said.

To ensure couples do not get cold feet, organisers have also thrown in a great prize for the first bride or groom across the finish line - a trip for two on the MSC Sinfonia cruise liner.

The wedding dash is one of a series of quirky sport events and is part of the Happy Festival, which takes place at the Tramonto wedding venue in Blanco, George on August 30.

Raubenheimer said the idea behind the festival was to break away from the run of the mill sport events held along the Garden Route every year.

This year there is also a page boy and flower girl fun run for the youngsters, with a prize for the best-dressed participant.

Other events on the programme are sunrise and sunset 10km runs, a Castle Lite 4km run, a CrossFit 6km trail run and mountain bike challenges.

There will also be food, drinks and other entertainment on offer, including a performance by Black Byrd.

“At 5pm rugby fans can gather round as we will be showing the rugby match of the day on a big screen.”

Raubenheimer said the festival had grown tremendously over the past five years and attracts about 600 people.

“We started with a 10km run and the wedding dash, then the trail run was added as well as another 10km and a kiddies run. Now we’ve added cycling to the programme too.”


Garden Route Media