PITTSBURG — The toughest runners in the area — both large and small — will converge at Pittsburg State University Saturday to tackle obstacle courses for a cause.
PSU ROTC and Pittsburg Parks and Recreation are teaming up to host two events in conjunction Saturday. PSU ROTC will host its fifth annual Gorilla Dash for adults, while PPRD hosts Just Another Mudder for children ages five to 13.
Last year, the two organizations decided to team up and host the events on the same day, helping raise money for different causes.
PPRD’s Just Another Mudder is a one-mile mud run for children. It features 16 obstacles, and entry fees help fund improvements at Schlanger Park.
“We recently put in a playground there,” Recreation Superintendent Sara Vacca said. “Next we are hoping to put in a pavilion.”
She said it has been great seeing the events come together the past two years.
“Captain Murrow with PSU ROTC had a child running in our event and called to ask if we wanted to team up,” Vacca said. “It has been cool seeing how it came together, we have parents bring their children or the other way around and all compete.”
The Gorilla Dash is set up and run by PSU ROTC cadets to raise money for the SFC Forrest Robertson Scholarship, which is awarded to two freshman cadets each year.
“Sgt. 1st Class Robertson was an instructor with us,” Master Sgt. Ken Griffing said. “He was killed in Afghanistan in 2013.”
The Gorilla Dash is a 5K run through mud and water featuring 29 different obstacles.
“Last year we had 22,” Griffing said. “So we have upped it this year.”
Both the Gorilla Dash and Just Another Mudder are taking registrations up to the beginning of the event at 9 a.m. Saturday. Last minute registrants will not receive an event t-shirt, but will still be able to take part in the events.
“If folks wake up Saturday morning and want something to do, they can head on down and register,” Griffing said.
The events will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Baja Course at PSU. Registration is $35 for the Gorilla Dash and $20 for Just Another Mudder. Teams may also enter the Gorilla Dash for $85. Teams can be up to five people.
— Chance Hoener is a staff writer for the Morning Sun. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @ReporterChance.