When the organizers of the second annual RC Mudders for Conservation Mud Run began planning for this year’s event, something unexpected happened.
After crossing out one Saturday after another for a variety of reasons, the date started getting pushed into the fall.
“Finding a time in the summer just wasn’t working,” said Sal Ochoa of Trapper Creek Job Corps. “We kind of joked on how much fun this would be around Halloween. It could like a running-with-the-dead kind of thing.”
The more people talked about that, the more excited they became.
Ravalli County Weed District manager Kellieann Morris led up the charge last year in getting the event started.
“This is going to be way bigger,” Morris said.
Halloween will come early in Ravalli County when the weed district hosts its second annual fundraiser that it is calling the “Run of the Dead Mud Run and Haunted House” on Oct. 12 at the Ravalli County Airport from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m.
The 5K Run in mud will feature more than 17 obstacles as well as course set aside for youngsters. The fun in the mud doesn’t stop there. This year’s event also includes a mud wrestling pit, a glow-in-the-dark paint slide and a bonfire with a free s’mores bar.
And that’s just half of it.
Plans are underway for building a huge haunted house with 17 rooms filled with ghosts, ghouls and other creepy sorts.
“My room is going to be filled with lots of creepy dolls that I’ve been working on through the summer,” Morris said.
Her colleagues will scare folks with a chainsaw and a trip through an insane asylum in their own separate rooms.
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Students from Trapper Creek Job Corps were instrumental in helping pull off the first mud run last year and Ochoa said they are enthused about taking part in the upcoming event.
“We kind of put an all-points bulletin to let them know about what we’re planning,” he said. “Many of our students love the ghoulish festivities of Halloween. Some of our students will be creating their own themed rooms at the haunted house.”
The plan calls for opening the haunted house on the same day as the mud run and then continuing it for the next two weekends. Ochoa thinks there were will about 50 Trapper Creek students helping out the first night and about 25 for the other two weekends.
“We’re excited to see how this is going to turn out,” Ochoa said. “Our carpentry folks helped to fabricate some of the obstacles for last year’s event. I’m sure they will go through those to make sure they are functional and safe.”
Whether it’s this event or others like Apple Days, Ochoa said it was important to Trapper Creek Job Corps to be a part of the local community.
“It was really great to see the community support us this summer at our open house,” he said. “We want to say thank you and continue working within the community.”
Morris hopes this year’s event will raise enough money to pay for a conservation project next year.
“We know that this year it’s going to be bigger and better,” Morris said. “We’ve had a whole year to think about the ways that it can be improved.”
Over the course of the Ravalli County Fair, they handed out over 500 coupons that offer a free ticket with the purchase of another.
“There was a lot of interest in this at the fair,” Morris said. “We want to get as many people as we can out there so they can realize just how much fun it is to get muddy and then get scared.”
People can learn more about the upcoming event on the weed district’s Facebook page called RC Mudders for Conservation. Information and registration are also available at rcmudders.com or by calling 406-777-5842.
Tickets cost $35 or $10 for kids 10 and under. There are also group rate specials.