WWG Riverina III Report

Weekend Wide Game Riverina III – May 2003
The Riverina Regional Rally
23-25th May 2003, Allambee Park


On the weekend of 23-25th May, Andrew Clark from the South Coast and Tablelands 1st Figtree Rover Crew took the Crew’s successful ‘Weekend Wide Game’ (WWG) event on the road – for a seven hour drive to the Riverina Region. Accompanying him was an intrepid patrol from the Wollongong-based 1st Mt St Thomas Scout troop. That weekend, Scouts from the Riverina regions experienced something different at their Regional Rally – in the place of the typical rally format, they found the WWG dubbed ‘Escape from Alcatraz’.

Taking part on a private farming property near Allambee Park (North of Ardlethan), 66 Scouts in 12 Patrols from 15 different troops participated in the game, run by assorted Figtree Rovers, and ably assisted by leaders and Venturers from the Riverina region.

The beginning of the game perhaps saw a degree of wish fulfilment by those in charge – the property was declared an independent country, and all members of the Scout section were immediately locked up.

(Un)Fortunately, this was only a plot device, as the next few minutes saw all Scouts escape their prison, and flee into the surrounding bushland. Each patrol was armed only with a map and some local currency – and to make things even more difficult, the Patrols were not allowed to pack any type of shelter or means of fire lighting.

The aim of the game was for the Scouts to dodge the Venturer “Hit Squads” (Prison guards) for 24 hours – after which time the border to the neighbouring country would open, allowing them to flee to safety. The Scout’s map showed the way to some supply dumps set up by the resistance movement, as well as a “neutral” native town. There were also rumours of a resistance camp set up somewhere in the region – whose inhabitants could offer many forms of assistance.

The Scouts approached the challenges of the game with varying degrees of success. The Venturer hunters were dealt with in a number of ways – a few patrols opted for the stealthy approach, others attempted to simply run for it. Some patrols solved the shelter problem by sleeping under the stars – others constructed bush shelters that were near works of art; and still others simply bit the bullet and ‘paid’ for proper tents with game money.

The Venturers and leaders showed a (worryingly) high level of willingness to get into their roles – especially those responsible for making the Scout’s life difficult. Of particular note were the ‘stingy’ shopkeepers, determined to wring every last penny out of their Scout patrons. Surprisingly, the shopkeepers awoke to find their trailer ‘decorated’ by person or persons unknown…(see picture)

After the final charge to the finish line points were tallied. The top patrols each scored over 5,000 points – with only 23 points separating 1st Springvale (5283) from the 1st Albury Gangsters (5260). 1st Ardlethan came in third, managing a hearty 5028 points.

All three Riverina patrols have accepted an invitation to compete in the South Coast and Tablelands WWG in November. Hopefully our region will provide some stiff competition.

Andrew Clark
SC&T WWG Committee