Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Amazing Chase JPL 2007

Last year, we had various activities we could sign up for...we did the fly fishing.
This year, there was only 1 activity planned, one that took a whole year to co-ordinate. It was The Amazing Chase as directed and executed by Delta Synergy Group.

The day began at breakfast where the seating plan was laid out by teams. As the brunch progressed and we got to know our team mates a bit better, you could feel the excitement level steadily build.

Basically it was similar to the TV show...there were yields,road blocks, team buffs,lots of racing and chaos, a bit of trickery & sabotage and ultimately 1 winning team. We were outfitted with a radio, map, water, first aid kit and best wishes.

To begin and leave the pit stop area, each team had to solve 8 of 12 word puzzles posted around the dining room. Once completed we got the next clue which directed us down to the boat house, where 3 members donned PFD, signed release waivers and paddled across Lac Beauvert and back. Facilitators were at every point to ensure no corners were cut.

The next clue had us sprinting across the lodge grounds in search of our next task. Using a GPS device, travel into a wooded area searching for a tent. Once this was returned to the group, 3 members were blind folded and instructed to erect said tent with only the vocal guidance of our team mates. To receive the next clue and move on, all team mates had to crawl into the tent and have their photo taken before repacking the tent back into it's container. BTW...we were the third team to arrive at this station to find we had been yielded and had to wait for the hourglass sand to run through.

The next clue indicated we were to head for the tennis courts. A wooden fence almost stopped Joe & I...we were the slowest runners...but we made the correction without losing too many steps. Here all team members had to traverse across the court without touching the pavement. Our tools, 2 2x4's and 12 wood block island which were pre-determined and placed on the court. This was quite a mental challenge to figure out the process, but once we had that done, it was just a matter of moving a person across, passing the 2x4's back and forth until all members had crossed. Here we picked up a lot of time, passing one whole team and cutting the lead margin down substantially on the other team that had been ahead of us.

With no time to go anything but grab your clue, gear and go we headed for the main road leading out of JPL. The young ones were way ahead of the +50 crowd when we realized one of our team mates was no where to be seen. But we kept putting one foot in front of the other. the next thing we knew, there appeared missing Dan in a Lodge van! We all piled in and drove the rest of the way to the next challenge, a couple of kilometers away. We had arrived first!

The challenge - hoist a team member up using ropes and a harness so they could recover the next clue with out touching the ground surrounding the clue case. Dexterity was the key and before you knew it, we were heading back for the lunch pit stop. Again, Joe and I were the slow pokes, so Dan flagged down a car with a visiting ON couple and begged us a ride. What great people they were, totally into this race thing!

We arrived first at the pit stop but as the other teams arrived, it was evident that we had targets on our backs because of the use of motorized vehicles. Teams left in the order and time differential that they arrived in. Just as we got the clue and signal to go, didn't some of the opposing team members grab Dan, ripped off his shoes and socks and high tale it out of there. But the clock was ticking...all to the loud cheers of the others. We finally got the shoes back and headed off to the Point.

This was a difficult clue in that there is a cabin named the Point as well as many points around the lake. We were passed by other teams at arriving at the proper location where we found we had to complete 2 tasks after waiting for our second yield to pass. The first, a tantric puzzle, the other, fill a leaky bucket using plastic cups. 3 of us started the puzzle while the others headed down to the lake. Again, we excelled and finished the puzzle quickly so we could help with the water.

Lunch time had proved to be a huge planning session for the others, and we weren't alone with a van to get us around the lodge. After being approved by our facilitator we got our clue and piled in and headed to another water location. We arrived first and yielded the beige team who was our closest competitor.



Our last challenge was using only a large packing box, a roll of duct tape and again a PFD, build a boat that would be captained by one out around a buoy 20' out and back. The company was there taking photos and of all the ones I want to see, is this one. being first we did our thing and succeeded fairly well but we heard stories of the different designs, good & bad! Once Jen returned from around the buoy, we received our final clue and again hit the missing shoes road block! Someone had hidden it along with our race pack in the shrubs. But we had them back withing a minute and were off!

We, the White Monty team (white for our buffs, Monty for our mode of transportation - Montana!), did arrive first, winning the competition and were on hand to greet the other teams as they clocked in. The talk is now all about the next repeat race...I think the targets will still be on our backs! To those interested, we would highly recommend this type of team building activity and this company. They had every aspect planned to a T, a very professional execution of a very crazy 6 hours.


Back row - Glen, Wendy, John Dampf (posing with the winners), Sally, Dan, Joe, Stu
Front row - Jennifer, Krista, Mary-Ellen, 'Berta

1 comment:

Rebecca (AKA - Rebel In Ontario) said...

Sounds like a lot of fun...I work for a municipality and a similar event is held every year and so popular that they have to hold a lottery for the spots as so many want to participate.

GOOD WORK WHITE MONTY!