We've got some deep divides in the Valley: Republican against Democrat, warmonger versus peacenik. But c'mon, people, now, smile on your brother, everybody get together for the free Unity Walk and Diversity Festival on Saturday, February 5, in Tempe. "Cities sometimes argue over the next mall or where freeways are going," says Ginny Belousek, diversity specialist for Tempe. "This is a chance to join together to celebrate the unity of the East Valley and honor the visions of civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King and César Chaacute;vez." Participants from across the East Valley will gather at 10:30 a.m. in different locations in Tempe before walking one to two miles to Tempe Beach Park, 80 West Rio Salado Parkway, for an all-day multicultural celebration with dance troupes and musical acts including jazz songstress Marion Meadows. See www.tempe.gov/diversity for starting points. -- Benjamin Leatherman
Maybe exercise can't spoil a beautiful day
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Sure, the McDowell Mountain Park Duathlon is more than 31 miles of uphill, downhill and breakaway running and biking terrain you're definitely gonna feel the morning after. But who cares about the morning after? On Sunday, February 6, with race-time (10 a.m.) temperatures pushing 70 and massage therapists waiting at the finish line, we think we'll finally make good on that New Year's resolution. Not to mention that race organizers, 3 Disciplines, promise the "best food tent around." Participants choose between a 5K trail run-20K or 40K road bike-5K trail run, or a 5K trail run-14K or 28K mountain bike-5K trail run format. Entry fees are $35 to $65. Call 866-820-6036 or see www.3disciplines.com. -- Joe Watson
Desert triathlon surprises sportsmen
Triathlons can sometimes be tedious. Sure, we enjoy the thrill of victory, but after the umpteenth time, we need something new. Good thing promoter Rick Eastman continues his series of adventure races with "Desert Rage" on Saturday, February 5, at Horseshoe Lake. Teams of up to four athletes will navigate a secret 25-mile course -- by way of trekking, orienteering and kayaking -- and will tackle "mystery events," which in years past have included a wheelbarrow race and archery. Registration varies from $110 for a single to $310 for a foursome. Participants must arrive by 6:30 a.m. The race starts at 8:30 a.m. Horseshoe Lake is 25 miles northeast of Cave Creek, off the intersection of Bartlett Lake Road and Forest Road 205. See www.sierraadventuresports.com for driving directions, or to register. -- Benjamin Leatherman