Great Squirrel Stampede Fun Run to benefit Carmel Clay History Museum


By Shelly Gattlieb

The Great Squirrel Stampede Fun Run returns Sept. 16 at Coxhall Gardens, 11677 Towne Rd., in Carmel. The family- and pet-friendly event will have 1K and 3K options.

Proceeds benefit the Carmel Clay History Museum, which is under construction on 1st Street SW in Carmel.

The event debuted last year to commemorate the Great Squirrel Stampede, which occurred in 1822 when squirrels displaced by pioneers clearing trees swarmed the local area, devastating crops.

In addition to a race, the Great Squirrel Stampede will include games, activities, photo opportunities, treats and more. A Golden Acorn Hunt will be held for children. Costumes are encouraged, with prizes awarded for the best ones.

Carmel Clay Historical Society Executive Director Debbie Gangstad said the new museum building is a strong investment in the community.

“I know that some people think of a historical society as a yawn, but this will be very different and fun,” she said.

The new facility will house a designated children’s area and rooftop for events.

“The Fun Run supports the long-term goals of the historical society, and we are just so grateful for Clay Township for funding the building facility itself and the City of Carmel for helping us with the interior so it can be a community space for people of all ages to enjoy,” Gangstad said.

On-site registration will begin at 8 a.m., with the run/walk starting at 9 a.m. Strollers are permitted, and free parking is available. Participants may register in advance at to guarantee a T-shirt. Those who wish to volunteer may sign up at