Local youth group hosting summer-long competition

By DREW GRANTHUM/Sports Editor

COLUMBIANA — The Columbiana United Methodist Church’s youth group is hoping a summer-long series of competitions can teach members about working together.

The competitions are part of the TRIBES recreations league, created by Rusty Sizemore in 2001, and are designed to create a team atmosphere while attempting to grow the size of the group, according to CUMC Youth Pastor Drake Roberts.

“It’s (Sizemore’s) baby,” he said. “He’s got the copyright (to it). Our conference made a deal to pay for the rights to use it. It’s an annual license so we don’t have to go through all the paperwork.”

Roberts said that unlike several outreaches, this was a serious competition that involved real teamwork and a points system.

“We split kids into groups where they can bring buddies, (and) we have various challenges each week for the rest of the summer.”

The league kicked off the season June 4, and will take place each Wednesday night over the course of the summer. The first half of the season will end June 25, as the teams will take a week off during the week of July 4, before the second half. The second half will run from July 9-23, with closing ceremonies July 30.

Roberts said the goal for each team was to gain as many points as possible each week through a number of ways, namely winning the weekly competition.

Other ways to earn points include bringing friends and canned goods, Roberts said.

On opening night, students were divided at random into teams of three and played competitive hide and seek. Each squad was given ten minutes to find as many on the others as possible. The two that found the most then squared off.

Roberts went on to say that while the games were led and conducted by he and volunteers from the church, team names, colors and strategy were left up to those who participate.

“They come up with everything,” he said.

After the first round, Team Death from Above led with nine points, Team Vicious and Delicious was in second with seven points and Team Captain Crunch and the Cereal Killers rounded out the field with four points.

For more information, contact Roberts at youth@columbianaumc.info.