Delta State University’s Division of Health, Physical Education and Recreation in the College of Education and Human Science will host the third annual Delta Down & Dirty Youth Mud and Obstacle Run at Statesman Park on Oct. 17.
Inspired by adult runs like the Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash and Spartan Race, the Delta Down & Dirty event allows youth 6-16-years-old the opportunity to run an obstacle challenge and mud course developed only for youth. The nearly 0ne-mile course will feature 15+ challenges, obstacles and mud pits for youth to experience, confront and overcome.
“In the first year we had over 400 youth run, and last year we neared 600,” said Todd Davis, HPER instructor and director of the Dave Heflin Outdoor Recreation Education Program. “This event is garnering serious attendance and we have moved the event away from Pig Pickn’ because it has just been too big to host with another event. Also, with it being in October now, we hope to have a little cooler temps on race day so youth and volunteers won’t overheat.
“We are hearing from adult race directors all over the South that our event is the largest youth mud/obstacle run in Mississippi, and we want to push to near 750 kids this year. It’s pretty awesome that DSU and Cleveland can have something like this for kids and be the largest in the state, if not the South region.”
Participants will be given approximate race times at registration and will run in waves of 12-15 racers at a time. The first wave of runners will start at approximately 10 a.m. and waves will begin every five minutes, allowing participants ample time to reach and attempt each obstacle without interference or overloads.
All obstacles and challenges are ‘challenged by choice,’ meaning that participants will be encouraged and allowed to try the challenge or obstacle, but will not be required to complete every one of them.
“This will be a fun, adventurous and positive event — one that I hope will inspire youth to be active with their lives and give purpose for exercise and being fit,” added Davis. “I want youth in our area to feel success and have an event of their own – something to train for and be excited to run. I also want youth to feel a sense of adventure, a bit of struggle, and then the emotional connection to finishing something physically demanding, especially in front of their families, friends and spectators. It’s an awesome moment.”
• General: ($25) non-competitive run with coed age groups of 15 participants starting with 6-year-olds at 10 a.m.. Finishers receive a t-shirt and medal.
• Elite: ($25) competitive age and gender groups, mass start of all competitive age groups at 1 p.m. Awards will be given to top three finishers in each age and gender group. First-time finishers receive a finisher t-shirt and medal. Girls run against girls, and boys against boys in their respective age groups.
• Both ($40): allows participants to run in the general run and compete in the elite division. Participants are only eligible to receive one finisher medal and shirt.
Ages 6-8 will run one lap | Ages 9-11 will run two laps | Ages 12-16 will run three laps.
This event is a fundraiser for the Outdoor Recreation Education Program at Delta State. The program offers youth and adult programs and events to inspire physical activity through the outdoors in the Delta and beyond.
Registration is now open online: https://racesonline.com/events/delta-down-dirty.
For more information, www.deltastate.edu/downanddirty