On Saturday, Sept. 26, the Rainbow Center is hosting its annual Rainbow Hike as part of a larger Suicide Prevention Week observation. The event will take place between 12:30 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. and will feature a hike around Horsebarn Hill.
The usually busy event will be limited to the first 10 registrants because of the Town of Mansfield’s restrictions on large gatherings. The Rainbow Center also requires that participants wear masks at all times and adhere to social distancing guidelines. They must also test negative for COVID-19.
Roselyn Terrazos-Moreno, a seventh-semester physiology and neurobiology major, who is also part of the Student Programs Team at the Rainbow Center, said that it would be a great way to meet some of the student staff workers at the Rainbow Center.
“This is my first year planning the Rainbow Hike, but my previous co-workers who did participate in the hike always talked about how fun and energizing the hike was,” Terrazos-Moreno said. “I think especially right now group activities are hard to do in person and with most things being virtual, the Hike is a great way to socialize while still maintaining social distancing guidelines.”
Terrazos-Moreno said the hike will also help with mindfulness, especially during the time of Suicide Prevention Week.
“When discussing suicide prevention, it’s good to talk about strategies and ways of practicing mindfulness. Hiking and being in nature are a great way to ground yourself and practice mindfulness,” Terrazos-Moreno said.
“When discussing suicide prevention, it’s good to talk about strategies and ways of practicing mindfulness. Hiking and being in nature are a great way to ground yourself and practice mindfulness.”
This event is being held in concurrence with other suicide prevention events across campus. The Rainbow Center described it as, “a great way to meet new friends at UConn, get outside to the fresh air and to get some exercise.”
“Bring water for yourself, wear proper shoes for hiking through the UConn Forest, and dress in layers to ensure your warmth by regulating your body temperature. Most of all, have fun!” the Rainbow Center said on their website.
While the Rainbow Hike will be limited in its capacity, there are still plenty of virtual events that have been planned throughout the semester for those that are not able to attend, such as a Queer Sex Ed Workshop on Oct. 1, a Spooky Social Night on Oct. 15, and a De-Stress for the Test event closer to finals weeks. Terrazos-Moreno encourages people to sign up for the Rainbow Center Newsletter to stay updated on all virtual events.
The registration link for the hike will be posted on the Rainbow Center’s Instagram page, @uconnrainbowctr. It will also be available in their community newsletter, as well as Daily Digest posts, Terrazos-Moreno said.
“As always, masks will be required. We hope to see new and familiar faces at the event! Rainbow Center student staff is really looking forward to talking with patrons,” Terrazos-Moreno said.
The Rainbow Center is an organization dedicated to “advocating for, and increasing education, access, retention, identity development and community-building for queer- and trans-spectrum communities,” according to their website. The center is located on the 4th floor of the Student Union, but the office is currently not open due to COVID-19. They encourage anyone with any questions related to the Rainbow Hike, or other questions or concerns to send them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.