The Trenary Outhouse Classics: Fart 26


Isabelle Tavares

The 26th annual Trenary Outhouse Classic race to take place

The Glory Hole. Da Colon Cobras. Holy Crapper. Super Yooper Poopers. These are the names of the winning teams from the 2018 Trenary Outhouse Classics: a quintessential U.P. tradition. One by one, teams of two push their frankenstein-esque outhouses mounted on skis down a narrow race track the length of a football field. These outhouses are constructed out of mainly wood, plastic and whatever else the builders can get their hands on, some even using a grand piano crate.

The first outhouse to embark on the race will be at 2 p.m. this Saturday, Feb. 23. Toivo Aho, inspired by an outhouse race he saw in Washington, decided to host the event in Trenary to break up the long winter months. Three weeks of planning and a lot of community organizing later, the first event was soon to become annual.

“There were so many bar fights, so many people going crazy inside their head with cabin fever,” said an event attendee in a 2015 video from Marquette Magazine. “He created this event and it just keeps getting bigger and bigger every year. It’s a fun excuse to come out and let loose.”

With a royal flush, the event begins with a parade of outhouses, its racers waving from their trusty outhouse. The winners are chosen by speed, but extra brownie points are given to those who dress for the occasion. The Holy Crappers, sliding through the finish line at 39.95 seconds, took fifth place in Da Sharts age group. Outfitted in full nun wear, the racers outhouse was painted a bright pink with the words “join us every sunday for worship with the porcelain god.”

Last year’s racers didn’t squat from just the greater Trenary area, they came from Wisconsin, South Carolina, Indianapolis, Minnesota, Illinois, Texas and Canada. The race, filled with hooting and hollering spectators, draws in over 1,200 people almost tripling the amount of current residents, as stated in a 2013 video from 906 Outdoors.

To keep the races fair and square, the race is divided into age sections. Ages 5 to 8 fall into the Squirts, 9 to 12 year olds are the Squeakers, 13 to 17 year olds — the Dingleberries, ages 18 to 35 are the Stinkers, Da Sharts are ages 36 to 49 and anyone over 50 is an Old Fart.

“We’ve had people break ankles, legs, fall down, have a heart attack,” said a spectator in a 906 Outdoors video from 2013. “It’s a hard job pushing but we have a lot of fun.”

Spectators join in on the fun, too, with a fur hat contest — some wear an entire fox, head still attached. The proceeds from vendors selling fur hats, hot pasties, t-shirts and more, pool back into the community of Trenary. In addition, a student from Superior Central will win a scholarship Aho’s memory.

“It’s a lot of fun, it breaks up the boredom in the winter,” a spectator said in a 2015 video from Marquette Magazine. “Let’s get out and enjoy