Ultramarathon turns into rescue mission | Tesla factory throws its own rave | Nationwide Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations

Ultramarathon turns into rescue mission

It may only be October, but that didn’t stop Mother Nature from dumping some snow during the DC Peaks 50 race. The near white-out conditions forced the 50-mile ultramarathon in the Wasatch Mountain range of Utah to come to an early end and all 87 racers had to be pulled to safety by search-and-rescue teams on snowmobiles and four-wheel-drive vehicles. They were only around mile 8 before organizers had to call it off.

ultramarathon runner

What used to be a rather niche sport has really only peaked in popularity in the last 20 years or so. Runners seek thrilling and challenging courses and are generally prepared for extreme conditions and high risks associated with the sport, but this one was a real doozy and something no one was prepared for. Participants found themselves nearly up to their knees (literally) in snow in nothing but shorts and t-shirts. Racers weren’t exactly equipped or dressed for the 12-18 inches of snow they encountered.

The severe conditions meant that some racers were treated for hypothermia, but luckily nothing more serious resulted from the incident. It was only back in May that 21 runners who took on a mountain race in China died from similar extreme weather conditions.

This was the first year of the DC Peaks 50 - a race that had been in the works for 2 years. Race directors explained that rain had been forecasted going into the race, but no one had expected snow. In any case, it looks like these runners are already excited for the next race.

Tesla factory throws its own rave

Nothing says Berlin like a good ol’ factory rave. Last Saturday, Tesla’s very own Elon Musk threw a big bash in the German capital for 9,000 guests at his new Gigafactory. “GigaFest” was nothing short of entertaining, filled with live techno music, arcade games, rides and of course giant balloon robot figures. Musk himself was in attendance and did his best to address the crowd in German as he took the stage.

GigaFest Berlin

Although current German rules limit gatherings to 5,000 people, the Tesla launch party got an exemption from the Covid rules and were given the okay to nearly double the attendance. They were granted permission by officials as long as they were able to prove “the event wouldn’t damage the land or release toxic substances into the groundwater”.

Tesla enthusiasts were given a chance to attend a ‘behind the scenes’ tour of the factory on the day of the event and even to ride in the new Model Y. With capacity limitations, the Berlin and Brandenburg residents were given priority for the plant tours. The event marked the opening of the factory which plans to begin production by the end of the year.

Although plenty of people enjoyed the day of events Tesla had to offer, others have criticized the building of the Berlin Gigafactory, fearing it could cause more harm than good, from threatening drinking water to endangering sand lizards.

Nationwide Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations

For the first time ever, an American President proclaimed the observance of Indigenous Peoples Day - “a day to honor Native Americans, their resilience and their contributions to American society”. On October 11, people marched, sang and celebrated at events across the nation in recognition of this day to educate and reflect on the history and the important role of the Indigenous People.

Indigenous Peoples Day

For the third consecutive year, Chicago hosted a concert to celebrate this day. The Old Town School of Folk Music welcomed people to a free concert in Lincoln Square on October 13 that featured indigenous bands and groups who showcased the ‘art, history and culture of Native Americans and Indigenous People of South America”. Although the concert was free, attendees were encouraged to make a donation to support the event. Another celebration filled Memorial Field in Great Barrington, MA. The event, organized by Alliance for a Better Future and the Stockbridge-Munsee community of the Mohican Nation attracted around 300 people for a day of live music, ceremonial blessings, and speeches. The Alabama Indigenous Coalition was another group to host an event in Montgomery that was filled with more art, dances and demonstrations. Attendees were asked to wear orange to commemorate of the thousands of residential school victims.

Overall, the day was more than just honoring and celebrating - it was also a means to generate support to officially change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day.