Monday, April 2, 2012

Cleveland Urban Iditarod: Ready, Set, Mush!

Akron Represented in Cleveland's First Ever Urban Iditarod
by Brit Charek

Yesterday was Cleveland's very first Urban Iditarod. 

So what exactly constitutes an "urban iditarod"? Basically, each "sled team" (the sled here is a shopping cart) has four "dogs" and a "musher" which race through the city from one checkpoint to another where they must complete ridiculous tasks such as compete in dance contests, read poetry or see who can eat the most Cheetos, all to raise money and canned goods for Harvest for Hunger.


While on route, each team is responsible for bringing in at least forty pounds of non-perishable food items to donate. They are also allowed (and encouraged!) to sabotage others as they collect canned goods that have been placed along the route, which makes the race a whole lot more interesting.

Just under thirty teams competed in Cleveland's very first Urban Iditarod on April Fool's Day, one of which was from Akron. The Akron Art Monkeys, lead by "Dr." Bill Lynn, branch owner of Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School Akron, decided to make their "cart" Godzilla themed, with the "dogs" dressed as fleeing civilians and the musher as Godzilla himself! 

Some of the other teams were dressed as pirates, classic superheroes, or the cast of "Ghostbusters."

So maybe there was no clear winner despite everyone's efforts, but all in all the Cleveland Urban Iditarod provided over 2,200 meals to those in need in Cleveland. If you look at it that way, everyone's a winner.

The race ended with delicious beers at Market Garden in Ohio City.

The Cleveland Urban Iditarod was sponsered by The Yoyo Syndicate of Cleveland. You can learn more about the Akron Art Monkeys and Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School by visiting their website. They meet up for drawing and drinks the 2nd Tuesday of each month at The Backstage at The Lounge at 370 Paul Williams in downtown Akron, right above 69 taps.

Let's hope to see more Urban Iditarod Adventures in the future!

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