U of L to host orienteering meet today

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By Simon Isham


U of L will host an orienteering meet today at 5:30 p.m. No, your SOSers will not be involved. This is something else entirely.


Then what is orienteering, you ask? It is a sport in which participants use a compass, map and their navigational skills to get to specific locations on a predetermined course, typically on unfamiliar terrain. Everyone orienteers at a different speed. Some people treat it like a leisurely stroll. Some people treat it like hardcore parkour.


The meet is a collaboration between Orienteering Louisville, a local orienteering club, and U of L students. Dr. Eric Wright’s summer semester HSS 150 Special Topics: Orienteering and Hiking class, will be helping to put on the meet. The class is popular, having exceeded maximum enrollment, and has been offered since 2005.


The students designed the course and set the control points. Then, a map was produced by Orienteering Louisville, turning the students’ vision into a reality.


Bruce Moore, vice president of Orienteering Louisville, said that summer is the off-season for orienteering, but that “we put on weekly meets around city parks to promote the sport and to get more beginners involved.”


So far, he said, “(the U of L map) is our only urban orienteering map.”


Though current students and alumni will have a definite advantage when it comes to locating the control points, Moore maintains that the meet is just for fun, not serious competition; in national and international meets, the map is embargoed beforehand, and the competitors must stay off the ground for at least a year prior to the meet.


The meet officially starts at 5:30 p.m., but staggered starts will be offered until 7 p.m. The cost for non-members of Orienteering Louisville is $3, which covers the cost of printing the map for the event. The start point of the race will be in the Red Barn courtyard, at the foot of the clocktower. To get in contact with race organizer Eric Wright, call 502-551-1875.


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