Down & Dirty
5 Fun Activities That Will Get You Muddy
Most of us who’ve grown up around the Tri-State aren’t strangers to getting down and dirty when it’s time for some outdoor fun. After all, we grew up playing outside in parks, on farms, and in wooded backyards, relishing the feeling of grass and gooey mud squishing between our bare toes as we ran around without a care for the cleanliness of ourselves or our clothing.
For many of us, that love for having fun while getting muddy has lasted into adulthood. Try one of these five activities next time you feel like playing in the mud.
1. Be a Muddy Mama
What could be more fun than conquering obstacles like the “Hot Mess Express” while getting covered from head to toe in mud with a team of your closest friends or coworkers? That’s exactly what’ll happen Sept. 19 during the third annual Muddy Mamas Mud Run for women and girls.
While the event is designed as a fundraiser for Girls on the Run and Girls Incorporated of Washington County, two local nonprofits dedicated to bringing awareness to issues facing girls today, a big part of the event’s allure is making muddy memories with your friends. “There’s something to be said about that extra level of camaraderie that you get from trudging through the mud together,” says Stacy Bowman-Hade, board president for Girls Inc. of Washington County. “It adds an extra element to the fun when you say we did this, and we got really dirty doing it.”
Visit www.muddymamasmudrun.com to learn more.
2. Take Mud Pies to a New Level
While making mud pies is a tried-and-true activity for kids and a fun way to introduce younger children to the magical mixture of dirt and water, teens and adults can kick it up a notch by making some professional-grade mud bricks. DoItYourself.com offers useful instructions on how to make the kind of mud bricks used to build adobe houses in the southwestern United States and Mexico at www.doityourself.com/stry/make-mud-bricks-in-6-steps. So grab a couple of friends and build your very own backyard adobe fort.
3. Go Muddin’
The thrill of motorsports meets a love for mud in a glorious union when it comes to muddin’ or mud bogging. And for those with Jeeps, trucks, ATVs, and dirt bikes, there’s no greater sense of pride than coming in off the trail with more mud than paint showing on your vehicle.
While it can be hard to find places to go muddin’ legally around the region, there are a few options. Check out Tomahawk MX in Hedgesville, West Virginia, at www.tomahawkmx.com or Rausch Creek Off-Road Park about two hours away in Pine Grove, Pennsylvania, at www.rc4x4.org. The latter park features nearly 3,000 acres of trails for off-road enthusiasts to explore.
4. Relax in the Mud
For those who prefer a more tranquil kind of fun, there’s nothing quite like a mud bath or a mud-infused spa treatment. And lucky for us there are several spas in the region offering experiences that are much more relaxing than going out and lounging in your nearest mud hole.
At Bella Salon and Spa here in Hagerstown, for instance, you can enjoy an invigorating 60-minute mud therapy body wrap where you’re slathered in a skin-rejuvenating mud mixture before being wrapped in warm blankets. Or try a 50-minute facial treatment that’s meant to reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles with vitamin C concentrate and a warm mud mask at Atasia Spa in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia.
Visit bellasalonandspa.co and www.atasiaspa.com to learn more about their mud-infused spa treatments.
5. Make Mud Art
Mud is truly one of nature’s most useful materials. Not only can it be used to create bricks to build homes, but kids and adults alike can use it as a medium to create beautiful works of art like mud paintings and sculptures. Use this mud paint recipe from the Minnesota Children’s Museum for an afternoon of mud-inspired artistry outside on your driveway or sidewalk: www.mcm.org/uploads/Homeplays/HomeplayMud.pdf.
Pro tips: Use food coloring to make your mud paint more vivid, and create your artworks on extra thick paper if you want to save them to hang on the fridge.
- Missy Sheehan is a freelance writer and copy editor living in Martinsburg, West Virginia. Learn more about her work at www.sheehanwriting.com.