Great Squirrel Stampede coming to Carmel next month

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The Carmel Clay Historical Society is mixing a little history with a fun event.

In 1822, a squirrel migration swept through central Indiana.

“Because there was so much development and the farmers had come in and cut down the trees, the squirrels were without their food source so they started eating up all the corn,”  CCHS Executive Director Debbie Gangstad said. “It wasn’t a real happy time 200 years ago, but we are using it as a way to make history fun for kids. It’s a true story. It shows how development has changed our communities, but the squirrels still have a place here, just hopefully not in big masses of thousands of them.”

The Great Squirrel Stampede, featuring 1K and 3K runs for all ages, is set for 8:30 a.m. Sept. 17 at Coxhall Gardens, 11677 Towne Road, Carmel. The races are sponsored by Carmel Clay Historical Society and Hamilton County Tourism Inc. Proceeds will help fund construction of the new Carmel Clay History Museum, scheduled to break ground near Midtown later this year.

Registration is $30 per individual, $40 per couple or $50 per family (up to six people) and includes the following: a Squirrel Stampede T-shirt, scavenger hunt along the route for prizes, Rose & Lois Coffee Bar with free cold coffee drinks and shaved ice, and ribbons for the age-group race winners. The deadline to register to guarantee T-shirt size is Aug. 23. Gangstad said officials can’t guarantee they will have every size available after Aug. 23. However, registration for the runs will continue until race morning.

“It will be a fun morning. It will get people out for some good exercise, and we’ll learn some history as we go along,” Gangstad. “We’re hoping people will go nuts for history.”

Strollers and friendly dogs are welcome. For more, visit carmelclayhistory.org.

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