By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN
BG Independent News
Bowling Green parks officials are looking at the “undead” as a way to breathe new life into park programming.
The first BG Zombie Mud Run is being planned for Nov. 20 on the new obstacle course being built behind the community center on Newton Road. The plans for the event were explained to the Parks and Recreation Board earlier this week by Ivan Kovacevic, recreation coordinator.
Participants will run through the 1.5-mile obstacle course wearing flag football belts. Along the route, they will encounter obstacles, mud and, of course, zombies. Kovacevic promised natural and man-made obstacles that the runners will have to hurdle, crawl through, climb over and run through – with plenty of water and mud along the way.
And as the name implies, there will also be “zombies” along the course trying to pull the participants’ flags and “infect” them. To successfully finish the race, a runner must navigate through the obstacles and past the zombies to the finish line with at least one flag still intact.
“If they make it, they survive. If not, they’re infected,” Kovacevic said.
The zombie event may attract some teenage participants, who are hard to attract to park and recreation programs, he said. But the popularity of the “Walking Dead” and all-things zombie, may just be enough to draw in teenagers.
Students with the DECA program at Bowling Green High School will be teaming up with the parks and rec department to help with the event.
Revenue from the Zombie Mud Run will be directed toward further development of the new obstacle course trail and toward the BG Parks & Recreations Camps for Kids program, which helps subsidize programs for youth and families in need.
Also at the park and recreation meeting, the board:
- Heard from board chairman Jeff Crawford that efforts are gearing up to promote the 2-mill park levy on the Nov. 8 ballot..
- Voted to increase non-resident fees for one-day and multi-day camp programs for youth. City Council will review the small fee increases in October. Parks and Recreation Department Director Kristin Otley explained that this would be a good time to revisit the non-resident fees since city residents are being asked to approve a tax levy for the parks.
- Listened as Cheryl Windisch reported on the success of the annual Wine and Cheese Fundraiser for the Parks and Recreation Foundation.
- Heard from Otley that the fence has been erected at the athletic fields off Haskins Road, behind the community center.
- Learned from Eric Fletcher about the upcoming Youth Sports Night featuring Bob Bigelow, a former professional basketball player, as the guest speaker talking about youth sports programs. The event will be held Oct. 12, from 7 to 9 p.m., in the community center, 1245 W. Newton Road. There will be no admission charged. A basketball coach clinic will be held prior to the speaking event, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The evening is for adults only – parents, volunteer coaches, youth league administrators, officials, and physical education teachers. Anyone wishing to attend should contact Fletcher at email@example.com.
- Heard concerns expressed by resident Lynn Ackerson about the acreage owned by the city and used for as Bowling Green Country Club Golf Course. The lease between the city and country club expires in 2025. Mayor Dick Edwards pointed out the golf course’s long history at that site since 1932, and the park board noted no plans yet for the property.