The Komen Arkansas Race for the Cure announced this year’s race will start with an all new feature called “Running with the Pigs”.
The late addition to the 21st annual race will include a set of 30 wild razorback hogs that will run with race participants for the first stretch of the race route.
“The Razorbacks have always played an important role in our state,” Race chairperson, and Arkansas State fan, Ashley Hurst tells us. “When the decision was made to move the race up this year to accommodate a Razorback Football bye week, I knew we had to do something to show our appreciation to the Razorback fans going without football that weekend.”
Only a select number of this year’s runners will run with the wild hogs, some of which weigh as much as 650 lbs. The race committee decided to randomly select participants who show up with University of Arkansas apparel for the race.
Select participants will begin at the starting line at Capitol Avenue and Arch street. Once the first participant crosses State street the wild pigs will be released to chase after the human runners. The pigs are reported to be very hungry and rather angry after having lipstick applied to dress up for the race. Runners who successfully make the turn with the pigs at Capitol and Cross street will receive a special race medal to mark the occasion.
“Like annual running with the bulls in Pamplona Spain, we do not expect all participants to reach the end,” Hurst says. “After all they are quite hungry and some have up to 2 foot tusks. We really think this will be the ultimate appreciation for all the Razorback fans who make this event possible, on this weekend, several weeks earlier than we wanted.”
Following the race the wild hogs will be transported to the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality headquarters in North Little Rock where they will remain as a special gift from the Buffalo River Conservation Commission.