Travel & Outdoors

Top Competitions To Get Dirty In Philadelphia

April 13, 2013 7:00 AM

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Tough Mudder - Tri-State
As a competitor in athletic events, sweat and some dirt and grime go with the territory. On the other hand, there are events where extremely muddy, dusty conditions are expected. Known as “dirty races,” some of these events benefit a favorite charity. For a muddy good time, check out these events in Philadelphia.
Merrell Down & Dirty
Fairmount Park
Belmont Plateau, PA 19128
(818) 707-8866 ext. 33
www.downanddirtymudrun.com

Date: July 14

The 4th annual Merrell Down & Dirty, sponsored by Subaru and held at Fairmount Park in downtown Philadelphia, includes a 5K race course that begins at Belmont Plateau and skirts baseball and softball fields before traversing a water crossing and following a gravel path that leads into a shaded and secluded woodland trail area. As runners begin mile three, they take a left at the recycling center and head toward the nursery for the final leg of the race, which includes hills to stretch their legs before coming back through the mud to the finish line. The 10K race features a bridge and another creek crossing. There are races for children and youth, such as the Adventure Kid 100-yard dash and one-mile race. Other competitions include pull-up and obstacle contests.

Dirty Girl Mud Run
Philadelphia, PA
(800) 370-0179
www.godirtygirl.com

Date: June 22

Dirty Girl Mud Run is a 5K race for women of all ages and skill levels. It is not a traditional race. The obstacle course race is not timed, but it is designed to be somewhat challenging. Teams are encouraged for the event. The course requires running, walking and crawling around, over, under and through obstacles called H20MG and PMS (Pretty Muddy Stuff). The race is designed to be fun, so if an obstacle presents too much of a physical challenge, it can be passed by. Part of the proceeds from registration fees benefit the National Breast Cancer Foundation. In 2012, Dirty Girl donated more than $250,000 for breast cancer research. Dirty Girl Mud Runs are held across the country.

Tough Mudder
Jaindl Farms
5585 Mulberry Drive
Schnecksville, PA 18078
www.toughmudder.com

Date: June 1-2

Tough Mudder races take place across the country. It’s standard procedure for race officials not to disclose specific course details until two weeks before the event. While the exact location of the Philadelphia event has not yet been determined, it will be held within a two-hour drive of the city. The course will include mud, ice, fire and electric shocks. Obstacles commonly include hay bales, walls, culverts, cliffs, mud and a fire barrier, to name a few. The average course completion time is three to four hours. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Wounded Warrior Project. To date, participants of Tough Mudder have contributed more than $5 million to the charity.

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Spartan Race
Blue Mountain Ski Area
1660 Blue Mountain Drive
Palmerton, PA 18071
www.spartanrace.com/pennsylvania

Date: July 13-14

The 3rd annual Reebok Spartan Race at Blue Mountain Ski Area features a five-mile course with completion times ranging from between 40 minutes to two hours. It is a chip-timed event. Obstacles include mud, fire, water and barbed wire, among others. With starts at 8 a.m., there are waves of 200 athletes that start every 20 minutes across five categories – elite, morning, afternoon, late afternoon and confirmed. All racers will receive a finisher’s medal, a Spartan Race t-shirt and a free beer ticket (for racers 21 and over). You can have as many people as you like on a team, but four people is the minimum number required. Children ages four to 13 can compete in the Kids Spartan Tough races. Pre-registration is $25, and the race costs $30 on the day of the event. The Hurricane Heat Spartan Race against founders and staff meets at 5:30 a.m., and the official race starts at 6 a.m. on Saturday.

Hardcore Pain Camp
Tussey Mountain Ski Area
301 Bear Meadows Road
Boalsburg, PA 16827
www.hardcoremuddrun.com

Date: May 4

Hardcore Pain Camp, sponsored by Hardcore Mudd Run, is a military-style boot camp held at Tussey Mountain Ski Area. Commanded by Hardcore Army Commander Animal Jones, the camp includes a 15- to 20-mile rigorous course around the State College area. It includes push-ups, sit-ups and runs. Hardcore Mudd Run was started by firefighters Gideon Schwartz and Rich Olsen in 2011. Mud run events are held across the country. Each event features a five- to 10-mile mud run which combines various obstacles. Participants must be 18 years or older.

Related: Director Says Oddyssey Half Marathon Is Race Designed By Runners For Runners

Jeffrey B. Roth, has won numerous state and national news and feature-writing awards during his career. A well-known crime writer, investigative reporter and a feature writer, Roth writes for a number of magazines and newspapers. Listed in the Locus Index of SciFi and Fantasy authors, Roth is the author of a number of published short stories and poetry. His work can be found on Examiner.com.
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