Monday 2 January
The annual Hair of the Dog event saw ESOC members shake off any remaining hangovers in fine style! It was cool but dry and, once underway, very pleasant indeed!
The orienteering element involved a 1-hour event that was ingeniously designed and implemented thanks to Judy & Keith, appealing to children, adults, runners and walkers alike. It involved ‘Building a Snowman’ by visiting various control locations within Spylaw Park. Similar to the game of Beetle however, certain body parts could only be added once the body and head had been found. As a result, there was much criss-crossing of the park and head-scratching trying to recall where that elusive body part was located! There was more orienteering, entitled ‘Catch a Snowflake’, which took members around the surrounding streets to the park noting the letter at each Snowflake (control) location.
Club President Walter completed the Build a Snowman first, followed by Maja R and Jo S. The first to complete both elements was Walter followed this time by Alison O'N and Jo S. Congratulations all - slow down and give the rest of us a chance next year please!
We then retired to the warmth of the scout hut where a fabulous buffet was had, thanks to the contributions of everybody, along with much chat and catching-up amongst friends. We were even treated to a bowl of warm delicious soup.
The day also gave the opportunity for Judy Bell to be presented with the ‘President's Medal’, which is awarded annually by the Scottish Orienteering Association to a volunteer who has contributed or achieved something exceptional in the last year or over recent years. This may be a club or sport-related contribution, or athletic achievement. Judy was presented with the President's Medal by Richard Oxlade, President of Scottish Orienteering, for her ongoing commitment, coaching and coordination within ESOC and ScotJOS. Naturally, all within ESOC were delighted for Judy and joined in a hearty and well-deserved round of applause.
There were also various tabletop orienteering-themed quizzes which were completed with gusto, and the ‘Newspaper game’ this time saw three teams pit their wits against each other, finding quotes from an old issue of CompassSport.
Then came the main event of the day, the Teddy Bear races. Amongst the children's knock-out competition there was much hilarity and great skills once the starter had called the infamous words, ‘Ready, Teddy, Go’! Rachel R took the victory this year, and in the adults' competition Jo S came out the victor. In the Grand Final over a best-of-3 format Rachel beat Jo 2-1 and so took home the very fine silver trophy and winner's plate.
Many thanks to all who contributed in whatever way to make this a fun and successful start to the new Orienteering Year!
- Mark Rowe
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