By Sandra McNeill

DETROIT (WWJ) – Thousands of people are expected to converge on Belle Isle Saturday, where they will be getting down and dirty … literally … for multiple sclerosis (MS).

A special fundraiser called “Muckfest” will feature 1,500 runners splashing through muddy obstacles like a barrel walk in a pond and a rock-climbing wall in a pit of mud.

Elana Sullivan, the president of the Michigan Chapter of the MS Society, admits the event is not for the fastidious.

“Crawling through mud-pits – sliding down a fireman’s pole – there are some that a like rock-walls and a lot of names I couldn’t say on the radio.”

“No, I would imagine not- though I will say we have done a lot to really keep this a safe and sanitary course – so all the water that was brought in for the water obsticales is right from the fire hydrant – so it’s purified city water – and there are plenty of places to wash up – there is a shower area and changing area,” said Sullivan.

There’s a balance beam over mud, and a teeter-totter to run across … which as WWJ’s Sandra McNeill found is not as easy as it looks.

Volunteer Tammy Willis checked out the water … “Just a little cool, great, it’s going to be very refreshing,” she said.

Just how dirty can you expect to get?

“They get filthy – we are right by the casino on Belle Isle – the spectators are going to be able to watch people as they do the last six or seven obsticles and those are meant to get people the dirtiest,” laughed Sullivan.

“It’s a really fun way to help eradacate a really serious disease.”

The event is expected to raise $100,000 for multiple sclerosis research.


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