BY MICHELLE FORTUNATO
Franciscan University’s annual Household Olympics on Saturday at the intramural fields offered participants a variety of fun activities, ranging from water balloon tosses, wheelbarrow races, crab soccer and an inflatable obstacle course.
The event was organized by the Rev. Gregory Plow, TOR, Brother Nate Meckey, TOR, Sister Jean Marie Ledsome, TOR and Household Council. Resident assistants from all the dorms volunteered to help run the events.
“It’s a great way to encourage students to join households,” said sophomore Sophie Meyercord. “I think in particular it is a really awesome opportunity to unite households as a whole. It’s important to love your own household and see the beauty in other households as well.”
Meyercord is president of Household Council and a member of Beloved First Truth household.
Of the 48 households at Franciscan University, most participated in Household Olympics, and some had more than one team, including Regina Angelorum, which brought six teams to the games this year.
Many households went all out in preparation for the event. Women of the household Sacrifice of Love sported matching red shirts printed with their team name, “Tough Love” and covered themselves in red paint.
“I seriously wouldn’t mind if this handprint were sunburned onto my face,” said junior Ginny Bender.
All over the fields, students in color-coordinated household shirts huddled together screaming, chanting and praying.
Before their first event, the women of Rosa Mystica household prayed together with an opposing team: “Jesus, we come together in a spirit of community and joy to glorify you.”
Among the participants, the focus of the day was not winning but simply having a blast.
“It was awesome to be able to spend time with the other guys in my dorm,” said freshman Grady Stuckman.
Despite the excruciating heat and the blistered hands that resulted from crab soccer, students’ spirits remained high. Men’s household Conquer Through Love loudly cheered on its sister household Sacrifice of Love as the girls competed throughout the day.
“It was fun to be able to spend time with my sisters in a different capacity and to see everyone being silly and crazy,” said junior Jenny Sullivan, a member of Sacrifice of Love.
The women of Theotokos household competed in the “Ball Between Knees Relay,” in which competitors attempt to run against their competing team while holding a ball between their knees. At the finish line, one of their sisters held up their household cross.
Members of Disciples of the Word household were ecstatic when they won the Frisbee toss with an astounding 28 hits on the target.
“My favorite activity was the hamster ball,” said participant Jamie Smith. “That was fun. But for the eleven-legged race, my team didn’t know how to count to two.”
The day concluded with all the households going back to the dorms to clean off the face paint and to celebrate Lord’s Day after several hours of competing.
Juli Buehnerkemper of Rosa Mystica truly saw that the day had a lasting impact.
“My favorite part is seeing the handprints sunburned onto people’s faces,” she said.