News, On Campus

“We Gingers Are All Heart”: BC Community Gathers for First Annual Ginger Race

Donning leprechaun top hats and shamrock-shaped sunglasses, a sea of redhead students dressed in green gathered in the Mods this St. Patrick’s Day to run in the first annual ginger run at Boston College.

“When all of us gingers started lining up and [”I’m Shipping Up to Boston”] blasted and the crowd started cheering, I felt so supported,” Mia Naman, LSEHD ’25, said. “It’s our day. It’s the gingers’ moment.” 

Over 40 students participated in the run at 1:30 p.m on Friday, beginning at Mod 3 and ending in front of Mod 20.

Beatrice Hesse, MCAS ’25, said she first heard about the race from a “fellow ginger friend” and saw many Herrd posts about the upcoming event over Spring Break.

“I didn’t think it would actually be a real thing though,” she said. “But like 30 minutes before the race, my friend was like ‘No, it’s actually happening.’ So we walked out to the Mods, and there were so many people. I was shocked. So we just decided to go for it.” 

Christopher Engelhart, MCAS ’25, said he also heard about the run through a friend. 

“One of my friends sent me a post from the BC gingers Instagram account and was like ‘You have to do this,’” he said. “I didn’t want to disappoint the people, so I did.” 

The @bc.gingers Instagram account heavily promoted the race, according to Naman. 

“I saw the post [announcing the race], and all my friends kept telling me I should do it, so I was like sure why not run in the first annual ginger race,” Naman said. “A lot of schools like Notre Dame do ginger races, so I’m glad BC is finally showing the gingers some appreciation, too.” 

Hesse said the student turnout was larger than she anticipated. 

“The actual run only lasted about one minute,” she said. “But before, during, and after the whole thing the Mods were packed with people just screaming and cheering us on. People really showed up for the gingers.” 

A lot of the runners already knew each other. According to Hesse, the group of BC redheads keeps in close contact.

“I didn’t know there was actually a whole community,” she said. “There’s a GroupMe of all the gingers apparently, and all the gingers knew a lot of the other gingers when we were at the race. And I was like ‘What is happening?’ It was a funny experience.” 

Despite the run’s short length, Naman said there were some “interesting occurrences,” including one runner falling down and another throwing up. 

“Our friend Bea [Hesse] got trampled running, but she got right back up so that’s what matters,” she said. “I think she felt really supported by the ginger community, and that’s what got her back off the ground.” 

Though her fall was painful, Hesse said she was still able to enjoy running alongside her fellow redhead students and hopes this becomes a yearly tradition.

“I started running and was just hanging out with the other gingers when this guy pushed me and then continued to push me against the ground,” Hesse said. “I just got up and kept running, but it hurt so bad. Overall though it was fun and a good experience. I was humbled for sure though.”

Engelhart said Hesse’s decision to stand back up after her fall was proof of the “ginger heart.”

“She’s got ginger heart,” Engelhart said. “We gingers are all heart.”  

March 19, 2023