Color War 2014: Pink Strikes Back!
Winning is great, sure, but if you are really going to do something in life, the secret is learning how to lose. Nobody goes undefeated all the time. If you can pick up after a crushing defeat, and go on to win again, you are going to be a champion someday. -Wilma Rudolph
In 2012, the Pink team made their mark on Matoaka’s history by winning the camp’s very first Color War. In 2013, the Purple team demanded redemption and were victorious. This year, Pink refused to be defeated again, and amidst chants of “Pink Strikes Back!” they won nearly every competition.
Monday afternoon, the entire camp traveled to Flagship Cinemas in Waterville to enjoy the film “Planes: Fire and Rescue”. Halfway through the movie, the screen went blank and a countdown began. The screams of excitement were audible outside the building. Matoaka was facing imminent war- COLOR WAR 2014 was about to begin.
With War Council members patrolling for safety, the campers streamed out of the theater towards the back parking lot of the theater where six buses and two vans were arranged in a semi-circle. Perched on top of one bus was the War’s Commander in Chief, Molly Pockets, the Camp’s Director, Jason Silberman and last year’s Generals. The Generals passed on their positions to this year’s leaders, Pete and Scotty who were promoted from last year’s rank. Atop the vans, directly in front of the buses the leaders for Pink and Purple. Our campers-turned-soldiers were thrilled to learn who would be leading their teams into battle over the next 36 hours.
Team lists were read and everyone divided into their two teams and boarded their team bus to return to camp, not as campers and counselors, but as soldiers of the Pink Army and Purple Air Force. Along the drive back, soldiers caught glimpses of “Spirits”, positioned along the roadside. Back at camp, soldiers disembarked their buses to the explosion of fireworks alongside a wooden sign with the words COLOR WAR emblazoned in flames. Teams gathered in their official meeting spots, t-shirts were distributed, and they prepared for their first battle: the Chaos Course.
Battle #1: Chaos Course (Monday Night)
This entire-camp relay is well-named, as it is very chaotic. Soldiers race across camp and have to complete ridiculous tasks. Soldiers stacked cups, picked up pennies, assembled tents, chipped away at ice blocks, devoured baby food, and rolled around in the mud. The Pink team, determined to make up for last year’s loss, took an early lead and never let go.
Battle #2: Principal Pursuit (Tuesday Morning)
This puzzling event requires teamwork amongst soldiers in order to solve a series of puzzles to decipher key-words reflecting Matoaka’s primary “principals” such as teamwork, integrity and honesty. Again, Pink’s determination and focus were rewarded with a satisfying victory in this fierce Battle.
Battle #3: Silent Lunch (Tuesday Afternoon)
Matoaka is known for the spirited cheering that fills our Dining Hall after each meal. However, today was different. Soldiers remained silent while the War Council patrolled the area marking point deductions for failure to comply. Naturally they did whatever they could to break the silence, trying to get the soldiers to lose their composure and laugh.
Battle #4: Tug-of-War (Tuesday Evening)
The teams faced off in one of the oldest tests of strength. There was a fierce battle between each age group, and both teams had a few satisfying victories.
Battle #5: Soccer (Tuesday Afternoon)
The World Cup has nothing on the intensity shown at the first-ever Color War Soccer team. Counselors and Queens on each team united and faced off in an epic soccer match. Team USA wishes they had the Pink team’s 15 year old goalie who defended the net perfectly helping the Pink Army secure a shutout victory with a score of 4-0. However the matchup was not as one-sided as the score may reflect. Both teams fought hard and the teams were evenly matched and fought hard for every opportunity.
Battle #6: Hill March and Fire Burning (Tuesday Evening)
Both teams gathered on the soccer field and lined up by height. They marched up the hill under watchful eye of the War Council. When they reached Camp’s main gates they lined up on a grassy knoll overlooking two fire pits where their Generals each assembled and ignited a campfire. The first team to burn through two ropes above the pit would be victorious. It was a painstakingly close match. The cheering subsided as everyone held their breath as both ropes were flaming, yet neither had broken. However the Pink team was yet again victorious as their rope gave out first. The Pink team erupted with cheers of delight.
Battle #7: Matoaka Mission (Wednesday Morning)
Purple’s determination to win at least one major battle was evident, and they took an early lead in this all-camp relay race. However, Pink made a spectacular comeback, reclaimed the lead, and finished first. The finish line was on our lakefront beach, and the winning team splashed into the swim crib in celebration.From the swim docks, our War Council Leader and Commander-in-Chief announced the final point totals, and that Pink had reclaimed their title as Color War Champions. The entire team took a victory plunge in the lake to celebrate. Soon the Purple team joined them and the colors mingled, once opponents and now friends united to honor the completion of yet another Camp Matoaka Color War.