Boulder to Denver Record Attempt

Daily Camera (Boulder, CO)
Locals moonwalk for Earth

October 21, 2002
Section: Local News
Page: B1
Elisabeth Nardi, For the Camera
Some may think moonwalking is a lost art. But two men in Boulder are using Michael Jackson`s 1980s walk to educate people about renewable energy sources and to get in the Guinness Book of Records in the process.

Adam Hall and Ramsey Brookhart are co-founders of the nonprofit Moonwalk for Earth. Today they will begin an eight-day-long event by climbing the third Flatiron overlooking Boulder and then moonwalking down the rock as they rappel.

On Tuesday, Hall and Brookhart will begin moonwalking 30 miles to Denver as a tag team. One will moonwalk for about a mile, and then the other will take over, for a total of about five miles a day.

They will moonwalk -- sliding their feet backward while appearing to walk forward -- from the base of the Flatirons to their final destination at the state Capitol. Their route will be on bicycle paths and along major city streets such as Broadway in Boulder, McCaslin Boulevard in Louisville and Colfax Avenue in Denver.

"We just wanted a way to get the public`s attention," Hall said.

Besides educating the public about renewable energy, the pair plan to set Guinness Book records in three categories: the fastest 10-mile relay-moonwalk, the greatest distance moonwalked in one hour and the longest relay-moonwalk.

Each day will include a party at that day`s destination.

"We are mostly trying to get people interested in wind power," Brookhart said. "Also we are pushing for education and conservation of coal-burning energy."

They will arrive at the Capitol on Saturday but will have to wait until Oct. 28 to present Renewable Choice Wind Certificates to Mayor Wellington Webb and Gov. Bill Owens -- or to their spokespeople if the leaders are busy.

Renewable Choice certificates enable residential homeowners to purchase part of their electricity from wind farms located in Texas. Hall said that while wind power may be more expensive, it`s valuable to the Earth because it doesn`t pollute with emissions and other toxins.

Hall said he has been training for moonwalking by doing 100 calf-rises a day, playing soccer and moonwalking whenever possible, including door-to-door selling of the certificates to Boulder residents. He is a salesman for Boulder-based Renewable Choice Energy, where he sells electricity from wind farms.

The company is the first other than Xcel Energy to offer wind power in Boulder.

Brookhart said that when he practices his moonwalking around parks and down streets, he gets some "weird" looks.

"People look, but it also initiates conversation, and that`s what it is all about," Brookhart said.

Hall and Brookhart started Moonwalk for Earth in 1999 after they graduated from the University of Colorado. Their main goal is to educate high school and college students about renewable energy sources and technologies.

They have spent two years preparing for the moonwalking event.

"We`ve both always been activists, but there was no change happening anywhere," Brookhart said. "Everything seemed redundant."

While Hall sells wind power, Brookhart is an account manager at Moguls Mountain Travel. He said it leaves him plenty of time in the ski off-season to work on Moonwalk for Earth.

They have purchased an old school bus, which they are renovating to be a customized support vehicle. The bus will follow Hall and Brookhart on the moonwalk route when possible and meet them at their final destination.

"We want anyone who wants to come out and walk with us to do it," Hall said. "We want it to be like Forrest Gump-style."

They first came up with the idea during a brainstorming session three years ago on how to get the public, and specifically high school students, to think about alternative forms of energy. Hall said he had taken a moonwalking class in the third grade.

The main goal of the marathon moonwalk is to raise money through donations so that the two can hire some help and eventually create a presentation for schools.

They have already gotten some students involved from Adams City High School. A video class there has created a 5-minute video, which Hall called a "moonwalkamentry," on what the group is doing.

"It`s so refreshing to work with kids and to see their interest -- it`s definitely a promising response," Hall said.

He said they took the students out to the track and taught them how to moonwalk.

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