Mormons believe in having fun. We are officially encouraged to find ways to spend time together ”participating in wholesome recreational activities” that will strengthen the family bond, and build unity. These activities can be a planned part of our Monday Family Home Evening, or completely impromptu. Over the past 21 years some of our favorite family activities have included things like hiking, having a picnic, playing frisbee, board game tournaments, making [and eating] cookies, swimming, miniature golfing, walking the dog….etc. etc. etc. Now that our children are nearly grown, we’ve been a little stuck on the “dinner-and-a-movie” activity, and were overdue for something new. So, last Saturday June 4th our family added something to our list that I’m pretty sure still qualifies as a “wholesome activity”, but definitely not ”clean entertainment”…per se!
At high noon, we left our house and drove 90 minutes to Soldier Hollow resort in Midway, Utah [of 2002 Olympic cross-country fame] to participate in THE DIRTY DASH 5K. Although my daughter and I have participated in race events in the past, the Dirty Dash is less like a race and more like a giant obstacle-course-turned-extreme-costume-party. In the woods. With mud. . . LOTS and LOTS of mud.
I like to hear stories about the prophet Joseph Smith’s fondness for foot races, wrestling and stick-pulling competitions. I imagine he would have approved of a “mud run”. Perhaps he would have even joined in the fun this past weekend. You’ve probably heard the saying “A Family that Prays [or Plays] Together, Stays Together”, right? Well, we just decided to “take it to the next level!”
It’s been unseasonably rainy and cold in Utah, so we were really excited when the sun came out Saturday and we were given a beautiful, warm race day to get wet and wallow. Here we are as the “Destroying Angels Team” – pre-race. Nice and shiny!
And here we are “after”
I admit, it looks and sounds a little crazy.
OK, it IS a little crazy. But it was also one of the most fun things we’ve done in a long time! It’s kind of cool and liberating to just play in the mud with wild abandon like a little kid again! And, it must be contagious, because over 5 thousand people showed up to do this race! In fact, there’s been such a demand that another Dirty Dash [longer 10K version] is scheduled for not one, but two weekends in September! So far, we have 15 friends and family that say they are eager to team with us, so it looks like this kind of activity could become a new “family tradition”!