Welcome to Follow-Up Friday!
By this time, you know the drill. Follow-Up Friday is a chance for us to revisit the subjects of previous posts and bring the PuzzleNation audience up to speed on all things puzzly.
And today, I’d like to revisit International Games Day!
The American Library Association has been promoting community through gaming for years with International Games Day, and last Saturday, November 15, was the latest edition of this marvelous holiday.
Libraries across the world opened their doors to puzzle fans, board game devotees, card players, gamers, and especially families, inviting them to socialize and share culture through a common medium: games!
I’ve been meandering through photo archives, checking out all the great events and fun ways people have gotten into the IGD spirit.
Check out this giant-sized Settlers of Catan board, created by one intrepid dad so more kids could get in on the fun!
Each year, game and puzzle companies donate to libraries, giving both needy libraries and newbie game players the chance to try out some terrific games. This year was no exception, as Ravensburger, USAopoly Games, Steve Jackson Games, and Looney Labs all donated games to various libraries in support of this terrific holiday.
[Two tweets from a grateful librarian after some awesome donations to their upcoming IGD event.]
But, of all the anecdotes I’ve encountered, my favorite concerns an event hosted at last year’s International Games Day: the Global Gossip Game.
You know the game Telephone, right? Where you whisper a message in your friend’s ear, and they whisper what they heard to another person, and so on and so on, and eventually, you see how the original message has changed from the beginning?
Imagine that, but touching all 7 continents.
From the ALA.org site:
The game began in Geelong, Australia, as “Play is training for the unexpected” (from a paper by biologists Spinka, Newberry and Bekoff).
It then traveled through Antarctica, Asia, Africa and Europe, then branched twice in the Americas. The three endings on the day were:
“I love the world” in Washington, DC;
“Zombie” in Winlock, Wash.; and
“Clouds travel around the world” in Talkeetna, Ark.
In all, the GGG had 840 participants and ran for 29 hours straight, through 74 libraries in 18 international jurisdictions and 6 languages. The longest branch traveled 114,609 kilometers (71,230 miles), and the total distance traveled was 151,927 kilometers (94,423 miles).
Now THAT is some international community building.
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