This outdoor game, a modification of "Capture the Flag", uses ball, baskets, and foam to re-enact the fight between the Redcoats and the Patriots in Massachusetts in 1775.
Can your foam-armed "Patriots" stop the "Redcoats" from capturing Concord's armory? You'll find out!
What You Do:
- Choose the teams. Depending on the size of the group, select three or so “Patriots” (more, if the group is large). Have the patriots stand in the middle of the field, and give each of them a “bayonet musket” to hold. Everyone else will be a Redcoat.
- The Redcoats' goal is to run across the field without being tagged, grab no more than two "cannonballs" from the armory, and make it back to the other end of the field, or "Boston". As long as they have not been tagged, the Redcoats can keep running back and forth until they have brought all their arms back to their side.
- The Patriot's goal is to tag the Redcoats with their "bayonet muskets". If a Patriot tags a Redcoat, the Redcoat must sit down where he was tagged on the field until the round is over. Any cannonballs the tagged Redcoat was carrying will be confiscated by the Continental Army and placed them in the "secret stash" basket in the middle of the field.
- Each round ends either when all the Redcoats are tagged, or when all the cannonballs have been removed from the "Concord Armory".
- The final cannonball count signals the victory: if the majority of the balls have returned to "Boston", then the Redcoats have won, but if the majority of the balls are in the Patriots' stash or in the armory, the Patriots win!
Did You Know?
What really happened in Massachusetts on April 19, 1775?
On that day, American colonists in the Massachusetts towns of Lexington and Concord entered a decisive moment in history. Early that morning, British General Thomas Gage sent 700 “Redcoat” soldiers from Boston to capture the Patriots Samuel Adams and John Hancock in Lexington, and to destroy the Patriots’ armory in Concord.
But thanks to the famous warning from Paul Revere (with help from Dr. Samuel Prescott), Samuel Adams and John Hancock were able to escape the night before the battle. When the British troops did make it to Concord on the morning of April 19, 1775, they began seizing gunpowder and arms until the colonists stood their ground at the Old North Bridge at the edge of the town. Astonished by the colonists' resistance, the British tried to retreat back to Boston. However, by that time, colonists from local towns had poured out of their homes and lined the road to fight.
By the end of the day, the British had lost nearly 300 men, and a clear message had been sent by the colonists: the Americans wanted their independence, and they weren’t going to give up the fight. They didn’t, and today, centuries later, we can still thank them for their gift.
Julie Williams, M.A. Education, taught middle and high school History and English for seventeen years. Since then, she has volunteered in elementary classrooms while raising her two sons and earning a master's in school administration. She has also been a leader in her local PTA.