MEXICO — Peter Merrill can hardly contain his excitement about competing against Team Marden’s at Saturday morning’s debut Outhouse Blowout at the Mexico Recreation Park off Route 17.

The blowout features outhouse racing “at its finest,” Merrill, a Mexico selectman, said Wednesday. The July 10 event starts at 10 a.m.

“Team Marden’s says they’re going to ‘put a whoopin’ on us,’ which they might,” he said. “There are three or four entered so far, and mine is still in the process.”

Merrill will be racing for TaDah’s Hairstyling Studio of Main Street in Mexico.

Motorized outhouses aren’t allowed, just portable homemade 6 feet tall potty shacks — without glass or wood — on wheels. There’s no limit on the amount of wheels.

“I did away with wood because I wanted to see people’s ingenuity. I wanted to see people bring out their talents,” Merrill said.

Teams will consist of five people — two pullers, two pushers and one rider to sit on the hole or throne inside — with the rider shouting race strategy to his or her “steeds.”

Riders under the age of 12 aren’t allowed for safety reasons, he said.

“The whole idea is to have someone sitting there like they were using it,” Merrill said. “They should also have a roll of toilet paper on a holder in there or at least a catalog. We’re going to set the racing world on fire.”

A grasping device for the rider is allowed. Additionally, all outhouses, which are to sport a name on each side, must be structurally sound enough not to fall apart during the race. Teams must also wear the same color shirts.

Entry fees are $10 to pre-register or $20 at the gate. All proceeds will help buy playground equipment for the park. Racing forms are supposed to be available at the Mexico Town Office, TahDah’s, or Maddy’s Pizza on Main Street in Mexico.

“The whole idea is I wanted something fun and affordable to bring the community together and to get people volunteering, and I think we achieved our goal,” he said of last month’s debut annual Lawnmower Races at the park.

That was the brainchild of Mexico Fire Chief Gary Wentzell, whose firefighters then ran and/or participated in the event. Most racers entered at the last minute, which is what Merrill believes will happen with the outhouse event.

“The lawnmower race was Gary’s idea, but I jumped on it to take it from an idea to an actual happening,” Merrill said.

Saturday’s race course was initially planned for 520 yards, but due to anticipated high temperatures, he said the track would be a straight line of probably 100 yards and delineated with orange traffic cones. Racers would compete two at a time side by side, dashing down the course and back up.

“It’s going to be too hot to do a 500, because somebody would die of heat stroke,” he said. “We’ll have two run at a time, like a drag race, and have a process of elimination.”

He said he hasn’t decided what the top prize will be, but is leaning toward $50 and a gift certificate donated by an area business.

“Most businesses have been very supportive of it,” Merrill said.

He said he’s hoping to start a movement with outhouse racing and other ideas.

“The outhouse race was definitely my idea. We’ve got to do something that draws attention to us, because people don’t drive to Rumford-Mexico to see Rumford-Mexico. The only way to get people here is to have something ridiculous.”

That explains the accompanying event — a hog-calling/husband-calling contest.

[email protected]


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.