More than 500 mud-runners took part in Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany “Dirty Devil Dog Run” Saturday. Runners trek through a canal on their way to the mud ahead.
ALBANY, Ga. -- More than 500 strong people jumped over hay bales, sloshed through a canal and crawled through mud -- for fun on Saturday.
The first "Dirty Devil Dog Mud Run" at the Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany drew people from Tifton, Tallahassee, Fla. and other points to take part.
Considering that the last 5K run at the base drew 42 runners, base commander Marine Col. Don Davis said the successful draw of the mud run guarantees another one next year.
"I think the community got the word out and people knew it would be fun," Davis said. "It is a beautiful day and we've exceeded expectations. Next time we'll have 1,000 and teams competing."
The mud-runners paid $25 entry fees and got more laughs than mud, lunch and souvenir dog tags and T-shirts. The mud run also benefited the Marines Toys for Tots Christmas gift program.
Marines in dress uniforms took the unwrapped new toys when people arrived at the base's Boyett Park. Gunnery Sgt. Kenneth Starkey said he thought the toy collection was a success.
"We dumped the boxes once when they were filled to the top and put them out again," Starkey said. "This is the first year and we did very good. I think next year we'll do even better."
Splashing through the first mud obstacle on the course, Taylor Harper and Brittany Pilkinton stood to look back on the runners making their way through the course.
"I'm just watching to see how my mother is doing," said Harper. "I'm having a lot of fun and I like the challenge."
Harper, Pilkinton and about four others sported orange headbands green shirts and camo pants. Mom Crystal Harper stood from the mud and said her group from Omega usually adopt costumes.
"We get different outfits for every run we do," Harper said. "We like to do outdoorsy things like running."
Other groups of runners sported different costumes -- there were muddy splattered and drenched runners in ballet tutus and a group from Tallahassee with goofy knit caps.
The knit cap crew belongs to a national club, "mudrunfun," with more than 600 members in their group. They've gone to many Florida mud runs. One member from Thomasville read about the Marine base mud run here and suggested they ... well ... get muddy in Albany.
"We wear silly hats in our group," said Bobbie Daniels. "We have a sock monkey, a panda, a Mohawk. You know how people go 'Marco ... Polo?' Well we go "Mudrunfun!" That way we can locate our members.
Mud runners ran by in leggings, in gym shorts and all sorts of costumes. When a slim brunette in a red T-shirt ran by on her way to the mud, a voice from the sidelines called out to a man about 20 yards behind her.
"Hey your wife is beating you!"
"What can I say? She is a warrior!"
That was Marine Corps Sgt. Joanna Sudduth racing ahead of her husband Derek. Derek will have a chance to take her on again January 5. The Marines plan to use the base to host a 5K run by the Wounded Warrior Project service dogs for vets group.