Scouts-L Mail Archive for February of 1999: Pinewood Derby/Thank You
Pinewood Derby/Thank You
Pam and Dan Hughes
Tue, 2 Feb 1999 02:47:53 -0600
Last November I asked the list for advice on Pinewood Derbies and you
all, once again, came through with flying colors. We just had our
Pinewood last Saturday and it was a great success. My goal as Chairman
was for the boys to have a great time making and racing their cars and
from all the feedback I've received it sounds as if I made my goal.
One of the most popular awards we had this year (I made plaques for
everyone) was the Turtle Award for the slowest car. I had done enough
PR about it that at our last Pack meeting the boys were joking about
not putting wheels on their cars so they could win it. It warmed my
heart to hear the loudest cheers of the afternoon for the winner of
the award. He (a Web II) had felt frustrated because his car didn't
win a race but his face was transformed by a big grin when he got up
to receive his award and take a bow.
We went with a little different (and some would probably say
blasphemous )<VBG> format that went over well with the boys and
parents.I stumbled on it at the December Roundtable when I was talking
to a CC who told me about it and how well it went in her last year
Pack even though she was thoroughly skeptical at first. We have a Pack
of 50 and it went well for us although with anything much bigger it
could become cumbersome unless you had a larger track.
FWIW here's what we did:
At noon when the racing was to start we gave the boys their cars and
had them line up (in random order) in three lines ( we have three
lanes) behind the track. I had placed tape on the floor for each line
and we did require them to sit rather than stand. Once they were done
with their race they could line up to race again in any lane they
wanted . There was enough randomness in the lines that the boys were
racing a wide variety of kids and having a great time. We awarded
points for first, second and third and tracked the points from each
race. Every boy raced a total of fifteen times and the one with the
highest score was first in the Pack, second highest for second etc.
Over the course of fifteen races it was apparent which cars were the
fastest. Our first place winner ( Web II),was undefeated but we had a
three way tie for second with one loss each (Tiger, Bear and Web I) so
those three got to race three more times against each other, once in
each lane, to determine second thru fourth place.
We had made it clear to the boys before hand that they were going to
be responsible for their cars and if they dropped and broke them
beyond repair then they would be out of the race. They understood and
were the best behaved we had ever seen them. They stayed in line well,
with no fighting, pushing, cutting in line or any other of a myriad of
behavior problems we could have had.
All in all a very successful format that the boys and parents want to
continue next year.
Thanks again to all that sent me helpful information.
WDL/CA Pack 3493
Overland Park, KS
Santa Fe Trail District
Heart of America Council