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The Cotatitarod : A Costumed Shopping Cart Race to Support Local Food Banks

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North Bay Burners just completed their first year doing a shopping cart race modeled after the CHIditarod. Held in the little town of Cotati about a hundred miles north of San Francisco, this event brought the community together to have fun doing good.
Thirty volunteers and twenty participants worked together to create their own version of the Chicago event inspired by the Idiotarod and followed in their footsteps by continuing the tradition of gathering food donations to support their local food bank. Around 400 pounds of food was collected in entry fees from the five teams racing to donate to the Redwood Empire Food Bank.
The Flaming Waldo’s, Trash Dogs, Downward Dogs, Goldenrod, and Doggie Style all ran a 5k costumed pub crawl where they answered historical Cotati trivia questions and performed stupid human tricks to get their passport stamped at each checkpoint location. While some carts were more elaborate than others everyone got into the spirit of the event with style.
Parts of the event were live streamed back to the park so volunteers could follow the progress along the course. Everyone who came out to support the cause is a winner, but here is who walked away with the scrap art trophies as tangible evidence of being a very good dawg:
First Across the Finish Line: Flaming Waldo’s
Best Decorated Cart: Downward Dogs
Best Themed Costumes: Doggie Style
Best Sprinter: Deble Faulkner of Trash Dogs
Best Last Minute Entry: Golden Rod
Best Team Effort: Downward Dogs
Most Dastardly Team or Best Act of Sabotage: Flaming Waldo’s
Best Use of Repurposed Materials: Trash Dogs
All who participated are excited to do it again next year and give a big thank you to CHIditarod for the awesome idea!
If you are interested to do your own food drive event in the spirit of CHIditarod then watch this video from the Burning Man Leadership Conference about the beginnings and how to do your own! 

The “Flaming Waldos” were the first to cross the line


Stupid human tricks were part of the race, including arm wrestling on someone.

Written by Kelly Walton

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