The Pole
Ear to the ground:
 “Nobody goes in the dunk tank just to pee. That’s so 80s.”
– One dunk tank parent consoling another at a recent Durango street fest

Down & dirty at DMR
It seems Durango’s hometown mountain is the latest to enter the “mud race” craze.

On Aug. 11, Durango Mountain Resort hosts its first-ever “Muck and Mire” adventure race.  Based on the wildly popular and insanely sadistic “Tough Mudder” phenomenon, the DMR race will feature a series of obstacles and challenges, albeit on a somewhat friendlier scale.

Race participants can test their fortitude on three levels: 10k; 5k; or the Mini Muck and Mire Mile Race (sorry, for kids only.)

The 10k race is billed as “competitive,” designed for more serious racers who want to test their moxie by conquering such all-around feats as slack lines, slip-n-slide, pond swim, culvert crawl, cargo nets and climbing walls (What? No electrocution or barbed wire?) From start to finish, this 10k will test endurance and mental fortitude (without trying to kill you) with 12 obstacles spread across the mountain.

The kinder, gentler 5k is geared toward families and “recreational” contenders. In this event, participants will contend with log jams, rock gardens, a mud pit, pond “skim” (no full submersion) and more.

And last but not least, adventurous younguns can participate in the 1-miler, which features some of the “best” obstacles, including the mud pit and slip ’n’ slide (Disclaimer to parents: your kids will likely get dirty.)

A post-event celebration and hose-off, complete with beer, soda, awards and prizes follows. Muck and Mire is co-sponsored by Steamworks and Durango Coca-Cola. A portion of proceeds from the event benefits Manna Soup Kitchen.

Sign up before 10 p.m. Fri., Aug. 3, and get the early bird discount: adults (13+) $35; kids (12 and under) $15; and family (up to 4) $90. Register at races/event/41016/M3. Registrants are asked to bring a nonperishable food item to donate to Manna Soup Kitchen.
For more, visit

$15 fix-ups
A new spay and neuter program is hoping to help fix the unwanted pet problem in La Plata County. This week, the La Plata County Humane Society announced a low-cost spaying and neutering program in Bayfield and Ignacio. Possible through a grant from PetSmart Charities, pet owners in the 81122 or 81137 zip codes can have a cat fixed for $5 or a dog for $15. The cost includes rabies vaccination.

“Owners can’t afford to pass up such a good deal,” said LPCHS Director of Animals Services Chris Nelson.

The nonprofit PetSmart Charities is the largest funder of animal welfare efforts in North America.