For nearly 30 years, Mudslinger Events/Oregon Trail Runs has encouraged Oregonians to explore their state by foot or by wheel. Started by a group of mountain biking enthusiasts, the organization creates runs and rides that get the blood pumping—including its namesake event, the Mudslinger, which sends cyclists racing through the Starker Forests. Off the bike, trail runs to the top of Mary's Peak and probably not through the Alsea Falls give participants a new perspective on the lush Northwest landscape.
Cory Cochran devised the inaugural Survive The Burn run by combining his love for running with his experience as a professional firefighter. To raise awareness for burn victims as well as funds for the Burn Foundation, the run mixes a scenic course, which participants can run or walk across for 5- or 10- kilometer, with CrossFit workouts and fun runs for kids. The race even includes a firefighter challenge, in which participants complete the course laden with firefighting gear.
As a citizen of “Track Town USA,” Jeff West has vast experience with all varieties of endurance athletics. An accomplished rower and rowing coach, Jeff balances triathlon training and ultra-distance running with volunteer work as a firefighter and paramedic. At The MultiSport Advantage, Jeff leads a team of coaches as they work with and challenge athletes. Up to eight cyclists hook into the CompuTrainer system, riding against each other in classes that help max out aerobic capacity and refine the economy of one’s biking motion. The center’s custom-made TRX apparatus can also accommodate eight athletes, helping them build dynamic strength by blending body-weight exercises with plyometrics and BOSU balls. The center’s metabolic testing identifies the baseline and limits of an athlete’s capacity, and helps trainers craft a plan for the triathlon students. Triathletes can also rent wetsuits that will keep them dry during the traditional Gatorade and kombucha bath they receive after crossing the finish line.
Ugly Christmas sweaters have become a modern holiday tradition, and in that spirit they are the symbol of Oregon's Ugliest Sweater Run. Runners dressed in their gaudiest knits will run (or walk) a 5K course trimmed with garland and lights, stopping if they choose for photo ops at each of a dozen stations themed after the 12 Days of Christmas. Beginning in Alton Baker Park and finishing at 5th St. Public Market, the race will culminate in an after party as festive as the run itself. As a DJ plays holiday tunes, runners can sign up for fruitcake-eating and eggnog-chugging contests. Those without iron stomachs can still get into the competitive spirit by contributing to an attempt to claim the Guinness World Record for Largest Gathering of People Wearing Ugly Christmas Sweaters.
In lieu of paying for parking, you can bring an unwrapped toy or five non-perishable food items. However, cash payments will all be donated to three charities: Toys for Tots, Food for Lane County Food Drive, and the Foster and Adoptive Parent Association of Lane County. Like Santa's Christmas-Eve duties or Mrs. Claus's epic knitting circles, Oregon's Ugliest Sweater Run is an all-weather event.
Most 5Ks feature participants in sweat-wicking T-shirts and shorts sprinting toward the finish line. But The Sweater Dash is different. During the fun run, runners and walkers don ugly sweaters to ring in the holiday season. Following the festive jaunt, participants head to the Ugly Sweater Party to celebrate their achievement with live music and holiday food. To add to the merriment, the event includes an award ceremony for Ugliest Sweater and a meet-and-greet with Santa, during which the winner of the Ugliest Sweater award can ask him for more stylish clothing.
Thousands of twinkling lights cut through the darkness and illuminate the trees lining the trails of Elijah Bristow Park during the Glow XC. The 4.25-mile race winds through a forest, but the markers light the way, with help from the LED headlamps handed out to every runner. Individual participants and teams of four navigate the path while competing in three divisions: male, female, and coed. In addition to providing an excuse to run through the woods at night, the race's other draw is the charity it benefits: the Apple A Day Campaign, which helps fund training for volunteer emergency medical responders.