It’s a bird…it’s a plane…it’s dozens of tiny superheroes descending upon Mansfield for the Super Awesome Amazing Incredible Fantastic Tiny Tri, the newest event from Mansfield Parks & Recreation. A unique morning of fun and fitness for the smallest of the athletes, park officials hope this event is a hit.
“We’ve had the Red, White & Rockin Kids’ Tri for a few years now, and it just continues to grow,” said Special Events Manager Angie Henley. “We recognize that Mansfield families love to be outdoors and active, even at a very young age. We’re hoping the Tiny Tri can serve as an introduction to fitness and competition for our littlest residents, on a scale that’s totally appropriate for them.”
Like a traditional triathlon, contestants will compete in running, biking and swimming events. However both the distance and the mechanics have been adjusted to work better for little athletes. The running section is shortened, and hand-holding by parent sidekicks is even allowed. Biking could be a mini bike with or without training wheels, but also includes trikes, scooters and strollers—whatever form of wheeled transportation desired. Floaties are not required for the swim section, which is more of a splash, with contestants hopping down an inflatable water slide. In each section, only a few children will participate at a time and the entire mood is friendly, with very low competition for an overall inclusive feel.
“We won’t be handing out trophies because that’s not what this event is about,” Henley said. “This is just a way for the little ones to get outside, get moving and learn to love exercise and adventure on their level. Ideally, we would love for them to discover a passion for the sport and end up joining us for the Rockin Kids’ Tri when they are older and really want to compete. But if all they do is end up having a fun morning in the park with their parents and friends, that’s totally a win too.”
Registration is now open, with a $15 entry fee per child that includes a cape and mask to keep, as well as the race and other on-site activities that morning. Parents are welcome to participate in the event as ‘sidekicks’ but do not need to register. The race is open to ages 0-10 and will be grouped in smaller divisions by age. Online registration is available here, or contact the Mansfield Activities Center for more details at (817) 728-3680.