Women unite to make big splash at Lake County Fairgrounds
GRAYSLAKE Friday Jun 29 2012 Participants in the Dirty Girl Mud Run a breast cancer benefit head to the finish line. The event was held at the Lake County Fairgrounds in Grayslake. Women of all ages ran in an obstacle course through mud. | Michelle LaVigne~Sun-Times Media
Updated: August 6, 2012 6:42AM
An estimated 1,000 women dirtied themselves willingly Saturday as a pledge to fight cancer and honor those who have survived.
Participants in the Dirty Girl Mud Run at the Lake County Fairgrounds in Grayslake had to run through a treacherous obstacle course, crawl through a muddy, knee-deep swampy passage with an overhead net so that they couldn’t stand up, and dip in a pool soupy with dirt.
After finishing the 3.1-mile course, each and every one of these women was covered with mud from head to toe — their faces smeared and hair tousled. Wearing tank tops and shorts, they laughed viscerally about the boot camp-type experience. They were wet and sweaty. It was a hot baking day with temperatures flirting with 90 degrees.
The two-day event attracted attendants from several states, including Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan.
Kelsey Seidoer, 24, of Libertyville, clad literally in mud after finishing the course, said she took the challenge to support Lisa Goldsher, a survivor of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, who also gamely participated in the run.
“I’m dirty but I feel liberated,” said Goldsher, spiritedly. “I’m going to take a shower and celebrate.”
The Dirty Girl Mud Run, the event’s sponsor, stressed the event, open to women of all ages, was non-competitive. They could come individually or as a team. Participants could take a detour if any of the obstacles proved too much a challenge for them. Most of them, however, took the obstacles in stride. The sponsor said it has partnered with the National Breast Cancer Society and that it will donate a percentage of the proceeds to support the society’s causes. Participants, except cancer survivors, paid a $65 registration fee.
Mary Monahan, 35, of Grayslake, mother of three children, said she participated in the event as a member of the Dirty Chicks “to raise awareness of cancer and for fun and sisterhood.”
“It’s awesome. That’s best party I’ve been to. I’m going to rinse myself and have a beer,” said she, caked in mud.
Her husband, John, proudly watched her as she completed the run, lauding her, “This is the greatest accomplishment for a fantastic cause,”
He said his wife and the other members of the team, whose children go to the same school as theirs, got together and decided to participate in the run.
“They actually trained themselves for two months for the race,” he said.
Kim Agostinella of Deerfield came as a member of the Treasure Chest and said she greatly enjoyed the experience.
“I felt good and laughed so much,” she said, the sun baking the mud on her.
When told she didn’t look 53, she responded, “I look good in the mud.”
Iris Nunag, 37, of Skokie, another team member, said, “At first, I was intimidated by the tough course, but it turned out to be more fun than scary.”
A group of young women, members of the Dirty Diamond Girls from Fox Lake, rested their heels in the back of a SUV in the parking lot, their bodies covered thick with mud.
“We came together to have fun” said Crissy Cruz, 30.
“Now, we’re tired, thirsty and hungry,” she added.
One girl said her skin felt tight as the sun baked the mud on her. The sponsor invited all participants to a rockin’ after-party.