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Trenary Outhouse Classic - Races show Yooper spirit

November 11, 2008
Mining Journal
Tom Felty was living proof that you don’t have to live in the Upper Peninsula to have the Yooper spirit.
Tom and Tim Feltny, from Frankfort, Ind. took part in the 15th annual Trenary Outhouse Classic held in late February last year. They raced their outhouse in the 50 and over age category and won first place. Even though they were the only team running in the 50 and over category, the win was still sweet. This year, the popular event is planned for Feb. 28
“I raced today for my brother Bill,” Tom said after the race. “He passed away three weeks ago and he was my partner when we first raced the outhouse classic years ago.”
Tom said he built the outhouse in his yard back home and described it as a “conversation piece.”
Some of the outhouses built by competitors over the years were simple, stripped-down units built solely for the race. Others were quite elaborate and could be used for their original purpose.
“There ain’t nothing like this in Indy,” Tom Feltny said. “It’s something different. The first year I was here for it, I didn’t race. The next year I decided I better do it.”
He said he usually brings anywhere from 12 to 23 family members with him ever time he comes to the races.
“It’s fun and we have a great time doing it. Everybody you talk to is nice here,” he said.
Donnie Kelley and Larkin Trainholm traveled even farther — all the way from Crawford, Ala. Last year was their first time at the races.
“Next time we’ll put a motor in there,” Trainholm said. “Either that or push it downhill.”
Trainholm said his wife’s father lives in Munising and he and Kelley came up to visit.
The outhouse classic is held every last Saturday of February in Trenary. Contestants build outhouses out of wood or cardboard and mount the structures on a pair of skis.  The object of the competition is to be the fastest two-person team to push an outhouse 500 feet down the street. The outhouses are pushed along the snow-packed roadway, one at a time.

Article Photos

Tom Felty, of Frankfort, Ind., pushes his outhouse in the 15th annual Trenary Outhouse Classic.



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