Outhouse Classic an example of local culture, fun

It’s almost that time again. Time to go -to the Trenary Outhouse Classic that is.

What started out as an off-the-cuff idea by the late Toivo Aho to beat the winter doldrums, has turned into a lasting tradition for southern Alger County. This year marks the 20th running of this zany, creative and fun event.

Each year, on the last Saturday in February, thousands of spectators line a snow-packed track in the middle of Trenary Avenue to watch the two-member race teams push an outhouse as fast as they can, trying to beat the clock. Races start at 2 p.m.

Outhouses of all description have been built and entered by race participants over the years. Some could function after the event as their name suggests, others are built purely for speed or for the sake of demonstrating the artistic flare familiar to the event’s spectators, which includes all kinds of bathroom references, toilet jokes and plays on words.

The outhouses come in different shapes and are constructed of various materials. Those who push the structures are much the same. They often dress in costumes too.

This year, organizers wanted to try to boost the number of race teams in the event. So they doubled the prize money for those winning first, second or third places in the races for those 21 and older.

We have covered the Outhouse Classic consistently over these many years now -from the first year when comparatively crudely-fashioned outhouses were pushed down the sidewalk- to last year’s action packed running on a beautiful day in Trenary.

We think this is a great event that has stood the test of time -longer than even organizers had ever thought it would last- and we hope it goes for another 20 years.

Congratulations Outhouse Classic!