Heckard Field played host this week to a bounty of local Kindergarten through fifth graders training for a Spartan Race organized by Molalla High School senior Patrick Ehleringer.
Ehleringer, who will return as the Indians' starting goalkeeper on the soccer team, decided to organize an event related to track for his senior project.
"I was talking with my friend Daniel [Morris], and we both wanted to do something track related, and we talked with [coach Sheron] Farner and she said she'd help us," Ehleringer said.
Morris will be a senior this year, but he and his family recently moved to Tennessee. Ehleringer said Morris helped him with the planning of the project.
"We wanted to do some kind of race," he said. "It's been going good this week, the kids are enjoying it, we've been doing track drills to help prepare them for this."
Ehleringer said he's enjoyed watching the kids going through the drills throughout the week, and his favorite part was the hurdle drills – most of the kids looked funny as they hopped over the small hurdles.
The races for each grade grouping (K-first, second-third, and fourth-fifth) varied in difficulty, but each race wound around Heckard Field through the same obstacles, which included climbing over the pole vault pads, crawling under strings about a foot off the ground to simulate an Army crawl, a javelin-like event where the kids threw small spears at balloons, jumping over small hurdles, running through a maze of hurdles, crawling under a row of hurdles, carrying a bag of shot puts through the pit, and running through three tubs full of cold water.
A few dozen kids and their families turned out for the final races on Friday morning and all walked away with medals and official times.
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