Guinea Pig Races!

Contestants gently tossed their pigs into the arena.

Celebrating their annual community farmer’s fair the Mohler Co-op, with the help and support of neighboring businesses and volunteers, were able to put on the once-a-year family friendly festival that graces the Mohler and Highway 53 area of the North Coast.

By Brian Cameron

In it’s fifth year the fair brought some new life to the community with the inclusion of a highly unique activity to grace the inland areas of Tillamook County. The first ever Guinea Pig Races took place this year to the elation of all who attended.

“Everyone set out to have a good time and make a day of it,” said Guinea Pig race organizer Richard W. Grey. “Jackie Brown over at the Co-Op asked me to come up with something special and new, and I just thought this was a good idea.”

Featuring a fenced in racing area where contestants would drop or lightly toss their guinea pig into the pen and whichever one would be the first to make it to their enclosure at the far side of the area would win. The winners were allowed to keep their pigs at the end of the event if they wanted but regardless everyone appeared to have a good time.

Besides the guinea pig races themselves there were also booths set up for child face painting, ice cream, local farmer’s tractors, hot dogs and stick-horse relay races which brought out every kid in the local area to have a great time on a sunny summer day.

According to Grey there were approximately 150 people who took part in the races and relays and roughly 400 people showed up to the event throughout the day.

“I’m not doing it for the money or anything like that,” said Grey. “I can safely say that the reason I’m doing this is because of the kids, they have such a great time with all of it.”

When asked if this is a tradition he hopes to continue in the future Grey seemed unsure though he expressed a willingness to do it so long as he had some help wrangling the kids to their starting places and keeping everything running smoothly.

One thing is for sure however, in Mohler every summer right after the July 4, pigs do indeed fly… to the finish.