Weekend warriors can enjoy a full slate of adventure-packed competitions this weekend at the Midwest Outdoor Experience.
The largest lifestyle festival in the Midwest gets under way Friday at Eastwood MetroPark, 1385 Harshman Road, and organizers expect to surpass last year’s record attendance of 20,000 guests.
“We are continuing to grow — as far as size and number of activities — every year,” said Lucy Sanchez, Five Rivers MetroParks outdoor recreation event coordinator.
There will be free adventure for all ages with activities from canoeing to ziplining and inline skating to slacklining, but for those who strive for first-place finishes or have a competitive spirit that just doesn’t quit, there are a variety of opportunities to compete for prizes and pride. From a laughter-inducing race for grown-ups on kids’ bikes to a fortitude-testing 12-hour endurance run, there is something for everyone, including the family dog.
Or, if cheering is more to your liking, then the National Slackline Championships, Subaru Ultimate Air Dogs and Charlie Doyle Memorial Regatta will amaze and inspire.
Midwest Outdoor Experience competitions
National Slackline Championships: The best “slackers” in the country will converge on Dayton to compete in the Association of Slackline Professionals National Slackline Championships Friday at 6:30 p.m. and Saturday at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. (finals).
Subaru Ultimate Air Dogs Competition: From the smallest jumper to the ultimate high flyers, visitors will be in awe of the Subaru Ultimate Air Dogs. You can even register your own dog and see if they have what it takes to be labeled an Ultimate Air Dog. A series of events will be held Friday and Saturday.
Pixie Bike Races: Tomfoolery Outdoors challenges you to unleash your inner 5-year-old with pixie bike races on a 12-inch child’s bike. Race your friends in the ultimate combination of skill and tomfoolery as you navigate a figure-eight course on a tiny bike at 9 p.m. Friday and 1:30 and 6 p.m. Saturday.
Ohio River Road Runners Club 12-hour Endurance Run: Runners are encouraged to enjoy a 2.6 mile loop course with flat terrain passing through grassy fields and wooded trails starting at 6 a.m. on Saturday.
Dayton Kayak Fishing Experience: Whether you are new to the sport, looking for additional kayak fishing information, or want to see how you stack up against the best Ohio kayak anglers, the event from 6:30 a.m.-4 p.m. is for you.
Miles for Freedom: Run, cycle, skate or walk to support the 27 million people worldwide that are estimated to be trapped in human trafficking. Compete for 2.7, 7.2, 27, 50, or 72 miles at 8 a.m. in support of Dayton’s Oasis House Saturday.
Napra River Wade Fishing Challenge: The National Association of Professional River Anglers, will host a wade fishing challenge on the Mad River from 8 a.m.-noon.
The Charlie Doyle Memorial Regatta: The Greater Dayton Rowing Association hosts 800 competitive rowers from high school, collegiate and master rowing teams from the tri-state area from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at Island MetroPark.
Ruff Run presented by Runners Plus: Run or walk through grassy fields, along tree-lined trails, and near the Mad River with or without your furry best friend at 9:30 a.m.
Get Out & “O” Orienteering Competition: Hosted by the Miami Valley Orienteering Club at noon, test your physical and mental skills to read and interpret a map of Eastwood MetroPark, locate the controls, punch your card, and complete the course faster than the other competitors.
Riverside FD 911Mud Run/5K: A traditional 5K race and a 5K Mud Run complete with challenges, like climbing, crawling and carrying, to add excitement. Races begin at 3 p.m.
National Slackline Championships, Subaru Ultimate Air Dog Competition and Pixie Bike races: see Friday.
Cache In, Trash Out Geocaching: A Cache In, Trash Out (CITO) with the Miami Valley Geocachers, 10 a.m.-noon.
Vibram Disc Golf Sunday Pro-Am: A temporary 18-hole course provides a unique opportunity to play disc golf at Eastwood MetroPark. The tourney is open to pros and amateurs in a play-at-your-leisure format between 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
For more information, including daily schedules and release forms, go online to www.metroparks.org/outdoorx/.
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How to go
What: Midwest Outdoor Experience
Where: Eastwood MetroPark, 1385 Harshman Road
When: 6-10 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturday
Admission: Free. Hands-on experiences, demonstrations, entertainment and parking are free. There are entry fees for some competitions.
More info: www.metroparks.org/outdoorx