1, 2, 3, 4, it was team competitions! Following an epic start, our group headed back to the hotel for opening ceremonies. Generals, Sam and Maddie, switched their lit candles symbolizing the beginning of the games of Black Magic versus the Red Devils.
The next morning, we began our last and final service project with the Boys and Girls Club of Maui. This was an entirely different experience for the trip members as the kids ranged in age from 10 – 18. The facility included a teen room, weight room, pool tables, ping pong tables, technology lab, skate park, basketball courts, and a soccer/football field. With all of these activities available to us, we decided to incorporate our team competitions into our service time there. Throughout the day, we would bring some of the kids from the Boys and Girls Club to an event and have them participate with us! Christine, Jason, and Carly dominated at 4 square and their enthusiasm really encouraged kids from the Boys and Girls Club to play. We also played a giant rock, paper, scissor battle game where Luciana won the event for the red team against one of the members from the boys and girls club! On the final day service, some of the Samoan kids taught us a dance and game from their culture. Dani was in the front row of the dance and showed off her skills while Paige rocked at a circle game. She even beat one of the Samoan boys in the game to have another win for the red team. With that being said, knockout, or “gotcha” known to the members of the Boys and Girls Club was the favorite activity during the competition. We ended each day with a game and the black team, with the help of Jamie, won all three days. Overall, our time at this Boys and Girls Club made many of our trip members reflect on their own lives and where they stand right now. Because they were volunteering with kids their own age, they were able to put some aspects of their own life into perspective, such as college and the importance of education, and truly feel lucky for the support that they have at home.
The competition intensity picked up as we returned from our service project each day. The apache relay, a giant relay race, was definitely a highlight of the games. Each trip member participated in at least three events and had a blast. Jen and Lindsay had to eat a quarter of a watermelon (seedless) with no hands. Both girls did an amazing job and had so much fun as you can see from the pictures. Chelsea was practically a mermaid in the pool as she swam her six laps for her event. Richard caught the red team up when completing a difficult math problem that involved finding the area of a shaded region with his knowledge of Pythagorean triplets for triangles. Victoria blew a ping pong ball on the ground against the wind to keep black team in the lead for the win. All trip members enjoyed their events and jumped into the pool holding hands as a team afterwards!
We also fulfilled another item on our bucket list when we bonded with another group, during our trivia event. The group was split by color and gender while they answered general trivia questions. The points were split down the middle as the black team girls and red team boys won that event. Additionally, during bucket brigade, Sarah continually encouraged the red team and focused on trying to get the ping pong ball to overflow out of the garbage bucket. It was by far one of the closest bucket brigades many of our trip members have witnessed.
The last night of the competition is always one to be remembered. Both Black Magic and Red Devils were asked to write an alma mater, slow song about their love for the trip, and a cheer for the teams and then present them to the judges. Sitting next to the beach in a secluded area, all trip members of reminisced on this emotional experience while each song was being sung. Watching the love that each trip member has grown for each other is a sight to see as they hold hands while singing the alma mater. After the songs, it was time for the competition to come to an end. It was decided that the Red Devils won sing, but the Black Magic won the competition by five points. Both teams displayed the highest levels of sportsmanship. During closing ceremonies, Maddie and Sam took their candles switched them back and blew them out representing the end. Both generals did an outstanding job leading their teams and we believe that this is an experience they will never forget!
Until next time…..
The Westcoast Blogger