jump to navigation

We Had a Field Day on Field Day! May 25, 2016

Posted by nrhatch in Exercise & Fitness, Happiness, People.

105px-Hopscotch1900F294.svgJill’s post about school recess periods, We’re Free, brought back happy memories of playing on the playground in grade school:

Kick Ball.  Dodge Ball.  Tether Ball.  Hop Scotch.  Jump Rope.

Remembering those good times on the playground reminded me of our annual Field Day event.

We had a Field Day on Field Day!

Instead of sitting in class, classes assembled outside to run fast, jump high, and compete for ribbons in Olympic caliber events on the track and in the field:

We enjoyed egg-spoon races, 3-legged races, wheelbarrow races (steering human wheelbarrows by the ankles), long jump, high jump, tug-of-war (where even the winners walked away with rope burn), and all manner of mad dashes.

As energy levels flagged, teachers lined us up in facing rows for the Egg Toss.

Not to be confused with the Caber Toss or Hammer Throw:


At first, mere inches separated the two long rows of intent students facing one another.  With each successive toss, successful teams had to take another step back before launching their oval missiles.

Eventually the chasm was too wide to cross with a gentle toss and the eggs got scrambled.

Egg Toss (in Public Domain)

Rather like Humpty Dumpty.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Did you celebrate Field Days in your school?


1. Under the Oaks - May 25, 2016

Yes we did celebrate Field Days. Not fond of them in grade school but looked forward to it in high school!

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

You had them in high school? Lucky duck! Were you quick like the wind?

Under the Oaks - May 25, 2016

I don’t know about quick like the wind but I did run track in high school… those were the days.

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

When I think back on HS, I’m amazed at all the opportunities guys and gals had to compete in sports ~> track, tennis, basketball, soccer, softball, baseball, football, gymnastics, field hockey, wrestling, volleyball.

I would have joined the Frisbee team, for sure!

Under the Oaks - May 25, 2016

I did intramural track and softball. The guys were the ones with the opportunity to compete in sports with other schools. The girls had no competitive teams that traveled to other schools.

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

Our girls competed with other schools in track, tennis, basketball, softball, gymnastics, and field hockey.

But not wrestling. 😉

2. Jill Weatherholt - May 25, 2016

Thanks for the mention, Nancy! Oh yes, I loved Field Day. Not only did it mean we were able to stay outside all day, but it meant the end of the school year was approaching. Field Day was the one day where my mother would pack a can of soda in my lunch…grape was always my favorite. 🙂

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

When I looked at the date on your post, I laughed at how long it took me to use it as a spring board for this post. I wouldn’t have won any relay race, for sure. I guess you could say I dropped the baton.

Your mother sounds like mine, Jill. We got soda on rare occasions only ~ orange, creme, root beer, birch beer, grape. I liked every kind but cola. And, yes. Field Day marked the end of the year ~ a taste of summer fun right around the bend.

Jill Weatherholt - May 25, 2016

I think I did drop the baton once. 🙂

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

Dropping the baton was bad ~> having to turn around, retrace your steps, and pick it up was mortifying. A walk of shame.

3. Kate Crimmins - May 25, 2016

Hated dodgeball. This reminded me of when I was working and we had “bring your kids to work day.” I’m HR so I was expected to come up with a program to entertain them from after breakfast to lunch when they went to their parent. Being kid-a-phobic, I would ask for volunteers. Surprising (mostly because this guy hated HR), a senior exec came forward. He wasn’t a great manager so I was leery but desperate. As it turns out he coached little league. The first thing he did was have some outside running games. I asked what he was doing. He said “Getting rid of the sugar.” We had bagels, donuts and juice for lunch and they got a little wound up. It worked. By the time he brought them inside they were ready to be quiet and do crafts. I think back when I was a kid. Recess wasn’t for us. It was so the nuns could rest while we expended energy. The recess of my youth was pretty active. I don’t remember any field days though.

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

Having kids get rid of the sugar = brilliant! Kids need to release energy in gym or recess if teachers want them to focus.

Even though our recess was a mere 20 minutes long, it gave us a chance to run off steam.

4. Tippy Gnu - May 25, 2016

I’d forgotten all about field days, until you reminded me. It was nice to get out of class for the day, and play silly games. I think some of us wished that every day could be field day. But you have to wait until retirement for that.

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

Exactly. It gave us something to look forward to in our dotage.

5. Ally Bean - May 25, 2016

I hated Field Day. Stuck outside in the sun, squinting, getting burnt while waiting to be picked last for all the teams. *shudder* At least during recess the teachers left us kids alone to play like we wanted to, but on Field Day the bossy coach types took center stage, making life miserable for bookish, clumsy kids like me. So glad to be an adult now.

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

It’s good to be an adult . . .

6. suzicate - May 25, 2016

I think field day was my favorite day of the year! Lots of great memories of those. It didn’t hurt that I won lots of ribbons! I admit I loved those blue ribbons (and any other colors for that matter) hanging from my wrist on Field Day! These days, you will not find me competing in any athletic events! And Turkey Trot day was also one of my favorites…my best friend feigned sickness on the Turkey Trot day because she hated running. My other best friend and I tied once and the other years one of the two of us won; I think she won more than me, but I still got a ribbon for second.

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

You sound swift, Suzicate! I doubt I earned any 1st place ribbons. Being outside was enough of a reward for me.

suzicate - May 26, 2016

USED TO BE swift, now I just mosey along and breathe in the day.

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

Same here! I move just fast enough so the dust doesn’t settle on my shoulders. ; )

7. Val Boyko - May 25, 2016

Oh boy … I can’t remember if we had them or not … which probably means not.
Sounds like a lot of fun though if you were athletic 😎

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

I remember being enthralled watching the speed demons (like Suzicate) racing around the track. My gears were a bit slower.

8. anotherday2paradise - May 25, 2016

I was really into Hop Scotch and skipping rope. Wish I’d kept it up. I could burn so many more calories in a day. 😀

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

Yes! The games we played kept us fit as a fiddle ~ especially in the summer months when we spent most days out doors.

anotherday2paradise - May 25, 2016

So true, Nancy. There were very few obese teenagers in our day. 🙂

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

Too much food and too little exercise is NOT a good way to start out in life.

9. Carol Ferenc - May 25, 2016

I don’t remember any Field Day events at our school. What sticks with me is the memory of falling face-first onto the playground asphalt at recess. Ouch! There were so many scabs on my face after that, I looked like I had a case of the measles!

nrhatch - May 25, 2016

OUCH!!! That hurts, Carol. I remember skinning my knees and elbows on many occasions, but never my face.

Carol Ferenc - May 26, 2016

Yeah, it was fun 😦

10. Behind the Story - May 26, 2016

I used to love hop scotch, jump rope, and 4-square. Jacks on a rainy day. Wheelbarrow races somewhere–can’t remember now. On field days, I mainly remember running races. Fun though I was never near the front of the pack, and they said I ran like a girl.

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

“4-square” stirs a memory but I can’t bring it into vision ~ was it like dodge ball?

It’s OK to “run like a girl” when you are a girl. Per my brothers, I threw footballs like a girl ~ not far, not fast, not accurate.

Behind the Story - May 26, 2016

In 4-square, you have a square divided into 4 squares, a basketball-sized rubber ball, and 4 players. When a ball comes into your court, you hit it into one of the other courts without it going out of bounds or hitting a line. If so, you’re out. It’s a good quick game for recess.

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

Thanks, Nicki. We did play that at recess . . . quick, fun, with minimal set up and knock down.

11. Debra - May 26, 2016

I hadn’t thought of Field Day in decades, but you’ve brought back such happy memories, Nancy! If I recall correctly it was usually towards the end of the school year, and I always thoroughly enjoyed it. I wasn’t very athletic, but Field Day always provided an opportunity for games that didn’t require athletic skills, just enthusiasm. I thought the egg toss was great fun! I’m smiling just thinking about it. Thank you!

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

That’s how I felt when I read Jill’s post last year . . . happy memories tumbled around my head and I was back at Cedar Drive School on the playground again.

Egg toss required accuracy of aim and consistency of catch (with a rolling motion so the egg didn’t S~P~L~A~T when slamming into the palms). Some had the knack, some didn’t. But it gave those who were never going to set land-speed records a chance to win bragging rights.

12. Tiny - May 26, 2016

How fun! Scrambled eggs in the sun!! Your post reminds me that I’ve not done anything that much fun in a while. That will need to be corrected soon 🙂

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

Haha! If you drop eggs on the pavement in Florida, they’ll land sunny side up, right?

13. diannegray - May 26, 2016

Field days seem like a lifetime ago, Nancy – I’d love to do one again (although I’d rather be the pusher than the wheelbarrow) 😉

I always did well in athletics, but never in swimming where I almost drowned several times. I’m like a rock in water 😀

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

Same here . . . I’d be great at steering someone’s ankles, but walking on my hands is out of the question these days.

We didn’t have swimming in school. A big fat bummer at the time. No school pool would have worked for you!

14. L. Marie - May 26, 2016

I’m back online finally. Wow. That brings back memories!

nrhatch - May 26, 2016

Welcome back! Thinking about grade school activities is fun, but I wouldn’t go back.

15. kardz by kris - May 30, 2016

This brings back memories. We had what was called Sports Day, rain or shine, on the Friday before Victoria Day (3rd Monday in May) and I remember 3-legged races and egg-and-spoon races (the eggs weren’t real). If it rained, then events were held indoors but it was always more enjoyable if the weather was nice.

nrhatch - May 30, 2016

From the comments here, it seems Field Days (and Sports Days) are far more global than I ever considered as a child.

On a side note ~> the island’s elementary school is having a Field Day this Friday . . . with one major difference:

“Parents and family members are encouraged to attend, join the fun, and cheer on the students.”

No wonder kids don’t go outside and play unsupervised games with their friends anymore . . . no audience!

16. Bun Karyudo - May 30, 2016

We mostly just did running races of various kinds. Since I had roughly the leg-to-body proportions of Yosemite Sam, I was not often in the winning team. 🙂

nrhatch - May 30, 2016

Hey! The Tasmanian Devil has similar leg-to-body proportions and he’s a whirling dervish!

Bun Karyudo - May 30, 2016

You’re right! Maybe there’s hope for me yet! 🙂

nrhatch - May 30, 2016

That’s the Spirit!

As an aside . . . one of the clues on Jeopardy tonight dealt with Whirling Dervishes. What are the odds?

Sorry comments are closed for this entry

%d bloggers like this: