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Oct-13-2016 16:20printcomments

Detroit Mud Run is Oregon's Version of Filthy Fun

Run through the lake bottom! There's no "run" like this one...

Detroit mud run 2016
The Finish Line at the Detroit Mud Run 2016.
Photos by Dennis Osbourn

(DETROIT, Ore.) - Early in the morning of Saturday, October 8th, after three days of rain, the horizon is just starting to light up. Clouds are broken but look threatening. Will it be clear and hot or cloudy and cold today?

Today, people of all ages from all over the state and beyond, will be coming to Detroit, Oregon even though the lake is low. They are here to recreate, but there will be no boating, fishing or swimming today. These people are here to run through the lake bottom.

The annual Mud Run is close to six miles, through creeks and mud, over rocks and logs, while deer and other wildlife look on. They opened several new creek crossings and added more challenging terrain in 2015.

From my kitchen window, while making a cup of hot tea, I can see people getting out of their cars, stretching, dressed in all kinds of different costumes. Still an hour and a half till the run starts, I can feel the anticipation in the air as I step out of my door and join the event goers.

People were excited. They were laughing, warming up, adjusting outfits, tying shoes and I even spied some of them taking one shot of cinnamon flavored adult beverage (whiskey). “A GOOD WAY TO WARM UP!” a voice said and got a laugh of several people standing around leisurely, then a few more of them had a warming sip.

The inviting smell of hot stew permeated the air, heating up to be enjoyed by the runners after their exhausting cross country run.

Gathering around the starting line the ages range from five to eighty-two. Men, women and children were having lots of fun together. Contestants gathered in front of city hall as they prepared for the race to begin. This is also the finish line.

Time for the race to start and off they go! The "fun run" for kids 10 and under is 1-mile long, and it began at 8:45 a.m., with the adults lining up for their chance to get dirty, running through the lake bottom of Detroit Lake and beyond into the Cascade Mountain Range. Many people come back for this epic challenge year after year.

I followed the crowd of runners and shot footage from my quad (available soon). The scenery is amazing, and this is a great excuse to get out there and see it. Two curious bucks were waiting for the runners at the check point on Piety Island.

Detroit is always full of fun and amazing people, but today that was multiplied. One gentleman I spoke with is bringing attention to the huge amount of suicides among veterans.

He is doing 22 push-ups every day for 22 days on Hwy 22 for the 22 veterans a day who take their own lives. He wishes to bring attention to the suicide epidemic and we will be doing another story more in depth with video, look for it soon.

Proceeds from the Mud Race go to benefit the Detroit Lake community. Organizers say, "The purpose is to promote, encourage and develop the economic health and tourism in the Detroit Lake area as well as provide a unique and enjoyable event to participants."

There wasn't as much mud as in previous years even though it had rained. Still, some people were a filthy mess as they crossed the finish line.

This reporter is touched to see the small town family values being displayed here, a not so common thing to see these days, I will remember this for a long time.

After the race, the awards, raffles and all the reverie, our small Oregon mountain town returns to normal and its all a memory til next year. Hope to see you all, back on the lake bottom.

AWARDS: Top 3 Overall Male/Female:

FEMALE FIRST PLACE: Linsie Fisher (Salem) Time: 40:46 Pace: 8:00/M
MALE FIRST PLACE: Jason Pankiewicz-Waldram (Estacada) Tim: 34:03 Pace: 6:41/M

AWARDS: Top age division:

9 and under: Jaci Nixon / Keleb Plank
10-14: Sydney Kadin / Brian Coburn
15-19: Justine Coburn / Tre Swinger
20-24: Sarah Weber / David Bovadilla
25-29: Margaret Kell / Andrew Westlund
30-34: Stephanie Kraft / Myk Rose
35-39: Shandi Terlecki / Merrill Whitehead
40-44: Angi Farnworth / Jon Hoisington
45-49: Erika Hanselman Green / William White
50-54: Tami Swyers / Roger Read
55-59: Debbie Eichler / Daniel Rideout
60+: Joanne Ballweber / Larry Hinton

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