'Hungry Games' at Clinton Heritage Days

Monday , July 21, 2014 - 10:16 AM

Standard-Examiner staff

CLINTON — It was an all-out water war Saturday afternoon in Clinton as kids, water guns in hand, fought to be the last person dry. As part of this year’s Clinton Heritage Days, the kids participated in the Hungry Games, an event reminiscent to the popular book and movie series Hunger Games.  

Before the water fight, participants, or tributes, competed in several mini-games, tossing water balloons filled with paint, and racing against opponents in a water relay race. Then tributes age 9 and older were divided into teams, called districts, then sent to the softball complex to defend their title as champion.

The water fight began with each tribute standing in a separate hula hoop, forming a big circle around a cache of supplies, namely water guns and water balloons. At the sound of a siren, tributes were let loose to soak their contestants, all while being hosed down by a Clinton Fire Department truck.

Each participant wore an Alka-Seltzer necklace, which dissolved once it came in contact with too much water. The tribute that kept their necklace intact the longest named the winner. This year, 7-year-old Sawyer Keel was the lone victor. 

"I was blocking (the necklace) and turning my back on people who were shooting me,“ Sawyer said.

Fire Chief Dave Olsen said the fire department is very involved with the city’s Heritage Days and with the Hungry Games.

“We just love to come out and have some fun with the community,” Olsen said.  

Hosted by Clinton’s parks and recreation department, this is the city’s second time hosting the Hungry Games. This year, about 12 participants were signed up, a smaller number than last year. 

Spencer Arave, an employee in the city’s parks and recreation department, said he was a bit disappointed at the smaller turnout this year. However, he had a good time watching the water fight.

"It turned out good,“ Arave said. ”A 7-year-old winning was probably the best part.“

Arave said, because of the small turnout this year, he isn’t sure if the city will host the event next year. 

This was Haley Rich’s second year as a volunteer for the Hungry Games. It was the great time she had last year that brought her back again.

"It’s really a nice way to cool off,” Rich said. “And, the kids love it too.”

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