This is one of those increasing number of weekends that I wish I had a whole section of the newspaper to give every event its due. So let’s not delay and jump right in to what’s happening.
If you didn’t sign up for the only weekday race in the streets of downtown Charleston (not Hampton Park) a month ago, you’re out of luck.
Still, it’s worth noting because of its popularity, especially with younger adults, and because it will block off portions of Washington, Concord and East Bay streets and a short section of Murray Boulevard in front of White Point Garden starting at around 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
Mud, Round 2
The second of three obstacle races featuring mud, and the longest-running local one, on consecutive weeks will be Saturday at The Citadel.
The 17th annual Bulldog Challenge is a grueling six-mile race that has grown from a primarily military event to one that attracts more than 700 people from all walks of life, military and civilian. This year’s race, scheduled about a month later than in years past, is expected to surpass that number.
Teams of four will work their way through challenges with names like “House of Pain” and “Guadalcanal.” Before reaching the finish line, teams will slog through the Lowcountry’s famous pluff mud carrying 25-pound sand bags.
That’s in addition to running steps at Johnson Hagood Stadium, hauling water jugs, wrestling giant truck tires, climbing ropes on the Marine Corps Obstacle Course and more.
To keep everyone on task and on course, Citadel Marines and Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps cadets will yell (and encourage) participants along the way.
The Bulldog Challenge raises about $29,000 a year to support scholarships selected by The Citadel Semper Fidelis Society, sponsor of the competition. This year, proceeds will go to the Semper Fi Society Scholarship Fund, which provides financial aid to a participating member of the society enrolled in NROTC and working toward a commission in the Marine Corps.
Late registration wraps up today.
Pinewood Back Nine
Saturday’s only 5K is the Pinewood Back Nine, which also includes a one-mile fun run, to be held at 7:45 a.m. Saturday at Legend Oaks Golf Club in Summerville. Proceeds benefit Chase for a Cure.
Like the Bulldog Challenge, if you haven’t signed up for the TryCharleston half ironman and sprint distance triathlons Saturday in Mount Pleasant, you need to hurry as registration ends today.
For those not participating, be aware that triathletes will be biking on segments of U.S. Highway 17 and S.C. Highway 41 in the northern part of Mount Pleasant on Saturday morning.
The event is staged from the KOA campground in Mount Pleasant.
Triathletes won’t be the only ones riding bikes on Lowcountry pavement this weekend.
In what is the biggest weekend in competitive cycling, the Low Country Racing Team will host the I’On Smackdown Race on Saturday and the S.C. State Criterium Championships at West Ashley High School on Sunday. Both events feature division races, ranging from pros to amateurs.
Spectators are welcome to watch.
(Nearly) free sailing
Ever wondered what sailing might be like? Want a chance to find out? Then check out Sail Charleston, a free, one-day exhibition of sailing for nonsailors.
On Saturday, Sail Charleston, an adjunct event of the Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week, which is organized by volunteers from the Charleston Ocean Racing Association, will hold the event at the Charleston Maritime Center.
From 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., those interested will be able to meet and talk with representatives from local yacht clubs, sailing associations and sailing-oriented businesses, as well as check out a variety of boats from single-person dinghies to world cruising yachts.
Those wanting to get out on the water can pay $10 for a short tour of the harbor and check out the exciting racing action of Charleston Race Week.
The organizations and businesses that will be on hand include Charleston Community Sailing (junior and adult sailing programs), the College of Charleston Sailing Association, Sayre Sailing, St. Barths Yachts and Charleston Yacht Club.
Banff Film Festival
Indoor events rarely make this column, but the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour, to be held 7 p.m. Saturday at the College of Charleston’s Physicians Auditorium, is one exception.
Brought to Charleston by Half-Moon Outfitters, the film festival presents the best of 350 award-winning films on the outdoors for one night of indoor adventure, action and environmental awareness.
Tickets are $10. The event benefits Charleston Waterkeeper, “a data-driven, nonprofit organization” focused on water quality issues in the basin of the Ashley and Cooper rivers, and the College of Charleston School of Sciences and Mathematics.
SUP ocean races
The folks at Half-Moon are busy this weekend.
Following Banff, the Half-Moon Open Ocean Challenge, formerly Bodhi’s Revenge, will be presented by Half-Moon and the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission on Sunday on Folly Beach.
Hot on the heels of the Golden Nugget SUP Race, the Half-Moon Open Ocean Challenge is the area’s only stand-up paddleboard surf slalom and Battle of the Paddle-style event.
This event will appeal to intermediate and advanced paddlers as well as spectators.
An unusual surf-style race, the Half-Moon Open Ocean Challenge will feature a slalom surf course with buoy turns in the impact zone. The 2-mile short course will feature one loop with a beach sprint, while the long course will run the route twice with two beach sprints.
The races also benefits Charleston Waterkeeper.
All of this, plus Earth Day events and the East Coast Paddlesports and Outdoor Festival.
Whew, and we thought Cooper River Bridge Run weekend was big.
Reach David Quick at email@example.com.
Todd Tyler and Kip Downer, part of team Recon 365, do 10 fire team pushups during the 14th annual Bulldog Challenge.×
Competitors in The Citadel’s Bulldog Challenge have to make it up and over obstacles, including bars, pipes and rope ladders.×
Senior Citadel Cadet Drew Ferris climbs the ropes during the Bulldog Challenge.×
Citadel cadet Randy Stamper twists his body around a couple of bars during an exercise on an obstacle course at a past Bulldog Challenge.×
University of South Carolina student Erin Sterbling holds on to teammate Amy Zion as they near the finish line during the half-mile fireman’s carry as their Citadel competitor Terrence Jackson carries his teammate Anthony Reynolds during a past Bulldog Challenge.×
Jeffrey Steele, Terry Fellows, Matthew Rogers and Drew Schildwacher of The Citadel demonstrate the stadium run, which will involve running up and down stairs with sandbags.×