Yesterday marked the 108th Annual Pok-O-MacCready Camps Blue & Gray Game! In this annual Civil War simulation, campers are assigned to join either the Confederate (Gray) or Union (Blue) forces as they capture cities in a "battle" akin to "Capture the Flag." Historical figures like Robert E. Lee and George Meade led raids into areas around camp which had been transformed into "battlegrounds" such as Cemetery Hill, Seminary Ridge, Little Roundtop, and Devil's Den. Delivering inspirational speeches along the Union Lines was Abraham Lincoln, who could easily be spotted with his long beard and iconic top hat.
Each of the three-rounds of the game began with "the big throw" where Union and Confederate soldiers met face-to-face (with much taunting on both sides!) The first round is always a bit of a warm-up, as campers (or should we say "soldiers") are only just beginning to catch on to the rules. But by the second round, the troops were well versed in the mechanics relating to cities, strongpoints, flanks, barricades, and cannons. By the end of the second round, victory could go either way, with both the Union and the Confederacy having represented their sides strongly. As the final round was ushered in with the call of the bugle, a last-ditch effort ensued by both sides, ending in an unprecedented victory by the Confederates. Some say you can't rewrite history... except at Pok-O! Ironically, the results were read at the subsequent peace rally: Pok-O-Palooza! Stay tuned for the story!