Obstacle racing season opens in Florida

By Scott Fais, Feature Reporter
Last Updated: Monday, February 25, 2013, 10:40 PM EST

With oversized dishwater soap suds floating across the grass, it looks clean.  Yet, it's anything but.

Beginning in February and wrapping up in December, Florida welcomes obstacle racing season.  Our state’s warm temperatures allow event planners to get an early start on mud runs.
"We are very proud to have coined the active entertainment industry, starting off with Warrior Dash,” explains Caitlyin Synowiec with Chicago-based Red Frog Events.
On farm land and cattle ranches, you'll find mud pits, net climbs, rope with electric current running through it, inflatable bounce houses and slides known as "death drops.”
"He must have had a good experience on the death drop.  Looking a little tired after that one,” chuckles Foam Fest spokeswoman Lisa LaBanc with Round House Racing.

Most races last three miles and attract folks of all different backgrounds from weekend athletes at Warrior Dash to families at Foam Fest.
"This race (Foam Fest) is geared toward family friendly,“ Lisa explains.  “We let 10-year-olds run.  It's not as hard core."
The attraction to each one of the more than two dozen events planned for Florida in 2013 is deeply rooted in child's play.  For every time mom said, 'NO!  You can't play in the mud!'  Obstacle racing says, 'Yeah.  Go Ahead!'
"We encourage people to run in costumes, to get really creative with the way they appear displaying their personalities,” Caitlyin says.
Both Caitlyin’s Warrior Dash and Lisa’s Foam Fest provides team-building challenges that adults normally don't participate in.

Trudging through a Florida swamp or climbing over junk cars are the things memories are made of.
"Dream big and great things will happen,” Caitlyin concludes.