HEBRON — They went for the music. They went for the games. They went for the fun of driving golf carts through the mud.

They went, in large numbers, for the beer.

“Good friends, good food and good alcohol,” said Karen St. Hilaire, of Lewiston. “Good times.”

The Redneck Blank, Pig Roast and Music Festival had a good Saturday.

Started in 2010 as a camping, dancing, mud-running, wife-carrying, beer-drinking weekend party, the Redneck Blank has since turned into a camping, dancing, mud-running, wife-carrying, beer-drinking four-day festival.

Once called the Redneck Olympics, the event was renamed after the U.S. Olympic Committee threatened to sue organizer Harold Brooks for trademark infringement. The name change has never dampened the event, which draws up to 2,000 people.

Some, like Mark LaVoie, attend every year. He favored the bands, games and mud runs, even if he couldn’t get muddy himself. 

“My golf cart won’t make it through,” said LaVoie, who lives in Auburn. “Maybe I’ll get mud tires next year.”

As rock music and beer-themed songs blared from Redneck Blank speakers Saturday afternoon, hundreds of people filled the rows of wooden bleachers overlooking a massive sand pit, or lounged in golf carts, four-wheelers and mud-splattered trucks, parked just so to ring the edge of the sand pit for the best view of the competitions below: A race that was as much beer-chugging as running. Tug of war, with members of the losing team plopping into a muddy water pit, one after the other. The ever-popular wife-carrying contest.

Tracy Malloy and her fiance, Jared Wadleigh of Belgrade, were Redneck Blank first-timers. She’d tried to talk him into joining the wife carrying competition — but he was too embarrassed to go in front of the crowd.

“We probably could have won it,” she said.

Instead, they watched from the bleachers, and he tried to talk her into joining a different competition Saturday night.

“He’s looking forward to the wet T-shirt contest,” she said.  

Saturday’s 80-plus degrees and strong sun didn’t dissuade many people from either watching or competing in the games. 

Laurie Dudley of Mechanic Falls broke out an umbrella for some shade as she and her friend, St. Hilaire, strolled past the sand pit. It was Dudley’s third year in a row at the Redneck Blank, and she wasn’t about to let a little summer heat force her away from the action.

“It’s just a good party,” she said.

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