Kalispell is officially a part of the world’s most important record book.
Last weekend more than 700 hardy athletes of all ages and abilities gathered in Depot Park to help set the world record for most people doing burpees at the same time.
A burpee is a full-body exercise in which a person squats down, placing both hands on the floor, jumps his or her feet into a plank position before jumping the feet forward again and returning to a standing position.
Any weekend warrior will agree that it’s exhausting to do just 10 of these, much less for the 2 minutes required by the Guinness officials for the record attempt to count.
Yet, despite the chilly afternoon, a line wrapped around the park and into the parking lot with folks eager to help push Kalispell over the top. Many of the participants were fresh off the obstacle course at the Montana Beast Spartan Race in Bigfork. Still caked in mud, these die-hards had enough in the tank to help bring home the record.
Congrats, Kalispell — what an amazing feat!
Spartan kicks off summer
The monumental effort to pull off the Spartan races is another feat worthy of recognition. This unique event has grown and evolved to become a major draw since it first came to the valley in 2013.
About 7,000 racers converged on the valley to compete, providing a significant spring jolt to our hotels and restaurants during an otherwise sleepy time of year. In fact, about 60 percent of registered racers travel here from out of state.
It’s no surprise that the Spartan races are now widely considered the official kickoff to the Flathead’s summer tourism season.