Rush to Kingston's Fort Henry

By Michelle McShane

I’m standing at the top of the hill, the fort at my back staring down a group of people charging me, bearing guns! I stay a couple of more seconds, get a few shots in myself before jumping off the hay stack out of the way…..just before the fastest of the racers reach me. I’m at the inaugural Cannonball Rush, camera in hand capturing the first of the “rushers” as they race up the Fort Henry hill.

Under...
Under…

photo-3
And over…

... And through!
… And through!

Cannonball Rush started in 2013, and is gearing up for it’s third race on Saturday June 13, 2015. A 5km course, boasting 12 or more obstacles inspired by Fort Henry’s military history, that take you into corners of the Fort that you typically wouldn’t get to visit. Be prepared to climb, crawl, swim….and well, I can’t share too many of their secrets!
While the inspiration for Cannonball Rush may have come on the successful heels of mud-run obstacle races, this race is unique in that the terrain of Fort Henry (have you ever run or even walked or crawled up that hill?) offers great natural obstacles; with no mud pits, electric zaps or ice baths.
“Cannonball Rush takes advantage of all the different areas of Fort Henry and our surrounding grounds – the hills, the internationally renowned cross country running track, the water, the views, and all of the hidden nooks and crannies of the Fort that our regular visitors are often not able to get into, it all lends itself to one of the most unique and fun races I’ve ever come across.” Greg Gouthro, the Events and Operations Coordinator for Fort Henry tells me.
He also stresses that Cannonball Rush isn’t about being first, or being super competitive; it’s about challenging yourself, team spirit and helping others who need a hand up and over an obstacle. Which I witnessed during that first race when I watched many racers lend a hand at the wall climb and the stretcher carry.
Register as a team
Register as a team

Or as a solo racer…….Cover boy of Cannonball Rush?
Or as a solo racer…….Cover boy of Cannonball Rush?

Business as usuall on race day
Business as usuall on race day

A corner of the Fort you wouldn’t normally visit….and costumes are encouraged!
A corner of the Fort you wouldn’t normally visit….and costumes are encouraged!

Teamwork….see it’s FUN!
Teamwork….see it’s FUN!

This year, Fort Henry is adding a “bonus” to the race. They have also decided to hold their 4th annual Beerfest & Food Truck Festival on the same day… sort of an after party for the “Rushers” The after party… I mean festival… will host local and regional craft breweries and food trucks offering samples of their products, and no festival (party) would be complete without live entertainment! And for Rushers, your ticket into the festival is included in your race fee!
On the way to the finish line….as a team
On the way to the finish line….as a team

Successful and happy Rushers
Successful and happy Rushers

As for me and this year’s race? I think I’ll see what the race is like on the other side of the camera. I’ve been training….climbing my kids bunk bed, sprinting to the mailbox, hopping fences instead of passing through gates, and bicep curls…..with a beer glass!
Hope to see you there too! Online Registration closes on June 9th and if you’re interested in volunteering you can email me direct… I can “rush” you to the top of the list! And those guns at the beginning? Wooden replicas.