When Dayna Muggeo and CrossFit Hilton Head first approached the Island Rec Center a year ago about using Chaplin Park for their inaugural I CAN Games, there was a fair amount of curiosity but little hesitation.
"They said, I don't know what this is but we definitely want to do this,'" Muggeo recalled. "It is so outside of the box and it is a little bit edgy for Hilton Head. I think it's pretty cool. It's probably the most unique grassroots sporting event in this area, just because it's so different from anything else people are doing."
Muggeo is clearly not the only person who enjoys it. After a solid debut a year ago, the I CAN Games are back for a second go around this weekend with more than 500 people slated to take part.
Competition is expected to get underway Saturday at 8 a.m. with check-in beginning at 7. A portion of this year's proceeds will benefit Hope Haven of the Lowcountry, Honor Our Heroes and RET Pediatric Cancer.
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The games have expanded from merely a one-day event to an entire weekend, with four grueling events awaiting all types of competitors.
"Basically what we practice is general physical preparedness," Muggeo said. "We practice for the unknown and the unknowable. You can see anything in this event."
Here's what competitors and fans will definitely see: Food, drinks, music, a live band, vendors on site and a water slide for kids. The hub of the event will be found in Chaplin Park, where Tent City -- the home base for competitors -- will soon be set up.
Several divisions have been added to this year's version, as the prescribed, scaled and masters levels will now be joined by beginners, teens and co-ed teen groups on Sunday. The top three finishers in each division will receive a medal and local sponsors have chipped in to award other prizes such as certificates, shows and gift baskets.
Events will go off in heats, so 8 a.m. start times on Friday will begin in either Chaplin Park or on Burkes Beach. CrossFit Hilton Head is expecting entrants from all over the country and some more from outside of the United States, as well.
"We had a friend of ours from Canada (take part)," Muggeo said. "It's pretty cool. People come from all over. And there's a lot of local competitors as well."
I CAN Games
What: A grueling four-part competition spanned across multiple divisions, which is put on by CrossFit Hilton Head and Hargray Communications.
When: Friday at Saturday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Check-in begins each day at 7.)
Where: Burkes Beach and Chaplin Park
What is CrossFit?
From the official website, CrossFit.com: CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide.
Our program delivers a fitness that is, by design, broad, general, and inclusive. Our specialty is not specializing. Combat, survival, many sports, and life reward this kind of fitness and, on average, punish the specialist.
CrossFit contends that a person is as fit as they are proficient in each of 10 general physical skills: cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, agility, balance, coordination and accuracy.