GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. -Get down and dirty Saturday, Sept. 15, for Grand Junction Parks & Rec's first ever Filthy 5K mud run.The first heat of runners, and/or walkers, sets out at 9 a.m. to face off against 20+ challenging obstacles including multiple mud pits, equestrian-type jumps, hills, hay bales, truck tires and more. The 5K will take place at Matchett Park, located at 28 1/4 and Patterson.Planning for the first of what will be an annual event hosted by the city began last year. "This was something our department was really excited to do," and has been well received with about 200 people pre-registered, said Emily Wright, recreation supervisor.A portion of the race's proceeds (30 percent) is going to United Way of Mesa County, which has been instrumental in supplying volunteers to help with the event. Business sponsors such as United Companies, Grand Junction Pipe, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Mac Daddy Motorworks and others have also made the event possible by hosting various mud obstacles and providing material and food.Even though racers will receive a bib and be timed, all ages and abilities are welcome to this family-friendly event."We actually have a group of ladies who are going to walk the course," Wright said.Day-of-event registration is from 8-9 a.m. and costs $35. Participants will receive a goodie bag and T-shirt, plus end-of-race snacks offered by Einstein Bagels. Silly costumes are encouraged.Prizes will be awarded to first-, second- and third-place finishers in each age category. "We've got some great stuff - gift certificates and ski lift passes," Wright said.After completing the course, racers will get a nice, cold shower courtesy of Grand Junction Fire Dept. "You're going to be gross when you finish. (You're) guaranteed to be muddy," Wright said.
Alongside the big-kid 5K, the Einstein Bros. Filthy Kid 1.5 Mile Race starts at 10:30 a.m. for ages 8-16.A shorter course and scaled back obstacles will greet young runners who want to give mud-running a try. Kids will get the added fun of having cognitive challenges in addition to physical obstacles. They'll also encounter a challenge Wright likes to call the "slip and slide of yucky." Winners in each age group stand to win super-cool prizes such as iPods and more.The cost is $30/child for those who pre-register; otherwise it will be $40 the day of the race Saturday. Kids 14 and older have the option of doing either the 5K or the 1.5 miler.