Ben Lorenzen (right) and Scott Eickman (second from right) are organizing the mud run fundraiser slated Aug. 9 at the Great Western Park on the edge of Manning. According to Lorenzen, they hope to model their event off a Gladiator run in Boone in which they participate each year. Tackling the course with them are Travis Doyel and Ashley Pevestorf.
Ben Lorenzen (right) and Scott Eickman (second from right) are organizing the mud run fundraiser slated Aug. 9 at the Great Western Park on the edge of Manning. According to Lorenzen, they hope to model their event off a Gladiator run in Boone in which they participate each year. Tackling the course with them are Travis Doyel and Ashley Pevestorf.
February 6, 2014



Manning Emergency Medical Services received approval from the Carroll County Conservation Board Monday night to host a 5K mud run on Saturday, Aug. 9, in Great Western Park, located at the southwestern edge of Manning.

After the race, participants 21 and older will have the opportunity to relax in a beer garden and listen to live bands, said Ben Lorenzen, volunteer firefighter and EMT and co-coordinator of the event.

"It's a 5K mud run geared toward EMS, fire, police and military-service members, but open to everyone," he said.

Fellow volunteer firefighter and EMT Scott Eickman is also organizing the event.

Lorenzen said the goal is to craft a course to interest participants of all ages and a wide range of athleticism.

"We want it challenging for athletes, but accomplishable for the people who just run every day," he said.

The course will include several obstacles. Though the specific obstacles have not been determined, Lorenezen said a wooden ball, mud pits, rope walls, telephone poles to climb under or walk across, and a giant slip and slide are being considered, the latter for the finish line.

"We were a little worried what (the Conservation Board members) would think about us digging holes, but they're excited to get people into the park," he said. "We'll make sure to put everything back where we found it."

The cost will be roughly $40 per entry. According to Lorenzen, 300 people need to participate for the event to break even, but organizers hope to attract 1,000 runners throughout the race day, which will probably start around noon.

"We think we can attract some different groups" like EMS, fire or police departments, he said. "We can make it competitive, make it fun."

Lorenzen said he participates every year in a Gladiator race in Boone, and hopes to model the Manning event on that example. The Aug. 9 date was chosen so as not to conflict with the Warrior Dash coming to the Des Moines area a week later.

"They're all the same concept, but those aren't fundraisers, they're for profit," said Lorenzen.

The Manning mud run will be coordinated and the course built through volunteer efforts. Money raised will benefit the Manning EMS with a portion of the proceeds going toward construction of a new fire station in Manning, which houses the Manning Fire and Rescue.

The Manning Chamber of Commerce is lined up to provide food after the race, and the fire department is slated to run the beer garden. Auen Distributing plans to help with ID tags and bracelets. There will also be an area for participants under age 21 to enjoy the bands as well, Lorenzen said.

Organizers are also looking at the possibility of shuttling participants from the IKM-Manning High School parking lot of the Manning FFA lot.

Signup links will soon be available online and through Facebook, Lorenzen said. For area residents who want to help, but not run, there will also be a place online to sign up to volunteer - the fee will be $10, and each volunteer will receive a T-shirt.