Washington, DC - From June 29 to July 10 the U.S. Department of State is collaborating with ultramarathon legend Dean Karnazes as he runs along the ancient Silk Road through Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan to mark the 25th anniversary of these countries’ independence from the Soviet Union.

Over the course of 11 days, Dean Karnazes will run 525 kilometers starting in Tashkent, Uzbekistan to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan to Almaty, Kazakhstan as part of the Sports Envoy program. Running as much as 50 miles per day and reaching altitudes in excess of 11,000 feet, Dean will connect with people along the way on behalf of the United States, conducting running clinics, giving talks on youth empowerment and advocating for healthy lifestyles, and inviting people of all ages to join him along the route.

Connecting with the people, culture, and history, Dean’s journey through Central Asia will provide a unique opportunity to show the power of sports diplomacy in bringing people from different cultures and nationalities together.