The weather may not have been ideal on Saturday for the Yukon Ultimate Frisbee Association who was participating in the Art Hawkins Great Canadian Ultimate Game on Saturday at Takhini Elementary School.
The rain poured down at some points and the wind made it tricky to toss a disc. Regardless of the weather, the ultimate players braved it out. Organizer Carrie McClelland said the Yukon Ultimate Frisbee Association has been playing in the Art Hawkins Great Canadian Game for four years and has dealt with plenty of weather challenges.
“One year it was the hottest day of the summer,” said McClelland,” and another it was so cold.”
The Art Hawkins Great Canadian Ultimate Game is a coast-to-coast event with 24 jurisdictions participating, including a game in Dublin, Ireland.
The game sets out to raise money for the Art Hawkins Development Fund which supports the accessibility and development of Ultimate Frisbee and Spirit of the Game in Canada with children, youth and those with a disability, especially those in economically disadvantaged communities.
The jurisdictions nationwide were divided into two teams, white and red, and throughout the day as the games came to an end the scores from the matches were totalled for a running score.
The Whitehorse game was the last to be played and the red team defeated the white side 15-11. Across the country, it was the red team which prevailed totalling 203 points to the white side’s 186.
During regular drop-in days, McClelland said the Yukon Ultimate Association doesn’t keep score and the intensity of Saturday’s game increased.
“It was interesting, we usually don’t keep score,” said McClelland.
“Everyone amped it up and people starting stepping up and it was more competitive. It was a close game and the weather kept it interesting.”
The Yukon game had 28 people participate and it raised $250 for the Art Hawkins Development Fund and McClelland said there is a challenge to see which jurisdiction can raise the most funds.
The game ran on the same day as the Yukon Ultimate Frisbee Association’s family reunion and returning vets thought the new players, especially the women, were very talented.
“One of the vets said they can’t ‘believe the quality of the women,’” said McClelland. “Strong women really upset the balance.”
McClelland said if anyone wished to try ultimate Frisbee, the drop-in games are held on Wednesdays from 7:30-9:30 p.m.
“Come early and learn the rules,” said McClelland. “It can be a steep learning curve but don’t be afraid. There are amazing players who will help. All the skill levels get mixed up so be patient and we will be too.
“It is a true team sport and it builds an awesome sense of community.”
The Great Canadian Ultimate Game also seeks to continue to grow the game in the country.
McClelland said the interest in ultimate in the Yukon ebbs and flows as people get pulled in different directions. At one point there were enough people to run a league.