By JENNIFER K. BAUER
LEWISTON — More than 100 tires, chains, ropes, culverts, barbed wire, sandbags and gallons of mud will transform a Lewiston Orchards farm field into a mettle-testing, memory-making playground this weekend.
The second annual Hillcrest Aircraft LC Valley Down and Dirty Mud Run is Saturday, Aug. 22 at Lewiston Community Park. Part cross-country run, part obstacle course, hundreds of runners of all ages and abilities are registered to compete.
“Our region deserves a unique event like the mud run,” said Nathan Alford, editor and publisher of the Lewiston Tribune and Moscow-Pullman Daily News and president of the nonprofit group that organizes the event.
“The nonprofit stripe of our mud run compares favorably to similar events in the Northwest. Every dollar we generate goes back into our community and we get to play in the mud with our kids and our friends,” he said.
Proceeds from this year’s event will benefit the Idaho Foodbank.
Thirteen obstacles will stud nearly 3 miles of open terrain at this year’s course. Popular challenges like the tire wall, the barbed wire crawl, over-under wall and rope climb will return. Three new obstacles are a waterfall cargo net, agility ladder and slip and slide. There’s more mud than before, plus a few surprises.
Four tips for runners and spectators
Tip 1: Arrive ahead of time to plan your attack.
Looking over the course beforehand can save valuable time. You’ll know what’s coming and have an idea of when you’ll need to put on a burst of speed, conserve energy or bust out some burpees. If you’re in a later heat you might consider watching earlier runners to learn from their tactics, or mistakes.
Tip 2: Learn to do a burpee.
A burpee is a high-energy combination of a jumping jack and a push-up. People who cannot complete an obstacle will face a five to 15 burpee penalty enforced by volunteers on the course. Even if you’re not running, would it kill you to try one?
Tip 3: Plan to watch.
The Down and Dirty Mud Run is a true spectator sport. People of all ages and abilities tackle the course and the fun they have doing it is infectious and inspiring. The field is open for people to wander and watch, just stay clear of the racers. Parents of kids 12 and younger participating in the Mini-Mudder are allowed to provide encouragement and assistance. Kids can run multiple times.
Racers are encouraged to hang out afterward and enjoy complimentary beverages (water and beer) at the finish line. There will be a backdrop for post-race photos. The post-race party continues at 5:30 p.m. at Riverport Brewery in Clarkston.
Tip 4: Runners should leave unneeded items behind.
It might make a great selfie location, but it is difficult to hold a smartphone in your hand while scaling a rope. Plus, the only way off that rope is into a mud pit that will envelop you and everything on your person. This is one time you will want to leave your phone and other valuables behind. Volunteer photographers will take pictures around the course to be posted on the LC Valley Down and Dirty Mud Run Facebook page in the days following the race. Plan to retrieve your valuables, extra clothes, and ID after the race.
IF YOU GO
What: Hillcrest Aircraft LC Valley Down and Dirty Mud Run
When: 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 22
Where: Lewiston Community Park, 1239 Warner Ave.
Cost: Free to watch. Race registration is $65 for adults and $35 for children age 12 and younger. Last-minute registration will be available from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 21, at CrossFit LC Valley, 2337 Third Ave. N., Lewiston. People can also register on site Saturday.
Of Note: An after party starts at 5:30 p.m. at Riverport Brewery in Clarkston.