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5K Obstacle Course Race
May 17, 2025

Welcome to Runner Central, your resource for everything you need to know to participate in our upcoming Tackle the Tar Race!  Thanks for interest in Tackle the Tar and for your willingness to help Send a Kid to College!


Race Information

On Saturday, May 17, 2025, the Rotary Club of Rocky Mount is hosting the annual TACKLE THE TAR 5K Obstacle Course Race & Family Fun Day at the Rocky Mount Sports Complex.  Our first heat begins with our Kid’s 1-mile fun run at 8:45 A.M. and festivities will continue until noon.


All proceeds from this event go directly to the funding of college scholarships for deserving students in the Rocky Mount Area.  Since 2016, thanks to you, we have raised and awarded over $500,000 in scholarships to youth in our community. Thank you for making such a difference in the lives of so many!

Tackle the Tar is a 5K Obstacle Course Race that begins at the Rocky Mount Sports complex and courses through historic Battle Park and the E.B. Grain Company property.  It comes complete with a MUD PIT and 15+ OBSTACLES to overcome.  All racers will receive: T-shirt, medal, one free beer (if over 21), and goodie bag.  See FAQS for more information. 

What should I wear?

Don’t wear your Sunday best to run the course, because you will be getting wet and muddy!

Do I have to register if I am only going to watch or support a friend or family member?  No. Only race participants need to register and pay. The event is FREE to spectators.  We welcome you to invite your friends and family to enjoy the music & festivities and watch you race. Spectators will only need cash for parking and food and goods that you choose to purchase from vendors. 

Packet Pickup

Race packets will be available on Friday and Saturday of race week. Follow our Event Schedule page for more information about the times and locations for packet pickup as they become available.  All registered runners will also receive an email notifying you of our specific packet pickup schedule.

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2025 Heat Schedule

  • 8:45am Kids Run Heat

  • 9:00am - Competitive Heat

  • 9:10am - Competitive Heat

  • 9:20am - Competitive Heat

  • 9:30am - Fun Run Heat

  • 9:40am - Fun Run Heat

  • 9:50am - Fun Run Heat

  • 10:00am - Fun Run Heat

  • 10:10am - First Responders Run Heat

  • 10:20am - College Run


*Note - All Heats Will Be Timed, with the exception of the 1 mile kids run.

Special Discounts available for First Responders, Students and Veterans.  See Pricing for details.

Click REGISTER NOW to view Heat Availability.


Tackle the Tar will be an action-packed adventure as you face one obstacle after another.  You can be sure that, on race day, there will be an intense variety of challenges.  


Previous obstacles have included:

  • The Great Tar Wall: Climb over a 16 ft. wall

  • Mud Pit w/ Roadkill: Pull yourself through the mud and over the mountain of rubber tires that are placed above the mud pit, forcing runners to dunk.

  • Log Jump

  • Tic-Tac-Toe: Step through a Tic-Tac-Toe board of ropes

  • HLXP Trailer Crawl: Crawl under the trailer of an actual 18-wheel truck

  • Culvert Tunnel: Walk under US-64

  • Tire Mountain: Climb over the mountain of tires

  • Natural Logs: A little nature never hurt anyone

  • Post Office Rock Hill: Climb down the Post Office Rock Hill

  • Rocks: Climb down the Tar River rocks

  • Down by the Water: Scenic, but adventurous Tar River run

  • Second Mud Put: Above ground mud pit

  • Spider Climb: Climb over a rope net wall

  • Spider Web: Make your way through the spider’s web

  • Culvert Tunnel: Return by going under US-64

  • Chicken Crawl: Crawl on your belly under the chicken wire

  • Roller Coaster Walls: Climb over and under a row of walls

  • Dip in the Pond: Wade through the pond

  • Slip up the Slide: Crawl out of the pond on our slip n slide

  • Truck Crawl: Crawl under Davenport Auto Truck

  • School Bus: Crawl over the seats

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Kid's Race

Our 1-Mile Kid's Obstacle Race will take place at 8:45 A.M on Saturday, May 17, 2025.

This race is for kids ages 8-13 ONLY and will include many of the same perks of the regular 5K race, including a T-Shirt and Medal.

There will be 8+ obstacles designed with kids in mind. Tickets for the 1-Mile Kids Obstacle Race are available for purchase through our race registration form. The registration fee is $25.

Please read our FAQ page for more details.





If you plan to race, thoroughly read our FAQS page and complete the participation waiver prior to picking up your race packet as instructed.




Tackle the Tar Age Requirements

  • You must be at least 14 years old on the day of the race to run the Tackle the Tar 5K Obstacle Race. However, kids ages 8-13 may run in the 1-Mile Kids Obstacle Race. The spectator area is completely free and fun for all ages. 

  • Participants ages 8-13 may only run in the 1-Mile Kids Obstacle Race at 8:45 A.M.

  • Participants ages 14-15 must run with a parent or guardian over 18, and are excluded from competitive heats.

  • Participants ages 16-17 may run in the fun run only, but must have completed a Parental Consent Form.



  • All other participants ages 18+ are free to run in any race with the completion of the Participation Waiver. 



For more information about rules, regulations, and what to expect, please refer to our FAQS.


For First Responders: Military Personnel, EMS, Police & Fire Department:


To claim this $5 discount, select the 10:10am First Responders’ Heat at time of purchase. You must produce one of the following when you pick up your race packet:


  • Valid Military ID

  • Valid EMS, Police & Fire Personnel badge, or proof of employment


We will honor ALL (active, reserve, retired and veteran) miliary personnel with this discount.


Local College Students:


To claim this $5 discount, select the 10:20am Local College Heat at time of purchase. You must be a current college student, alumni, facility, or staff at ECC, NCC or NCWC, to run in this heat. You must produce one of the following when you pick up your race packet:

  • Valid Student Id or Proof of Graduation for Alumni

  • Valid Facility or Staff badge  

For Group Block Purchases of 10 or more:

Group rates are available if you plan on running with a group and want to be in the same heat. For more information about qualifying and receiving a group rate, contact us at

ONLINE REGISTRATION DEADLINE: Thursday, May 15, 2025 at 12:00 Noon

Onsite Registration will be available on Friday night from 6-9 PM at  Bishop Stadium or Saturday before the race.

T-shirt, medal, and goodie bags are not guaranteed for any participants registering after April 30, 2025.

Register By                         Pay Only
5/20/24 – 8/31/24                      $35.00

9/1/24 – 12/31/24                      $45.00

1/1/25 - 2/28/25                         $50.00

3/1/25 - 4/30/25                         $60.00

5/1/25 - 5/16/25                         $65.00

Day of - 5/17/25                         $75.00
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