Our First Derby

We competed two weekends ago at the Pinewood Derby.  My mother and grandmother came in for the even which made it all the more special for Kiddo.

Given that this was our first derby, we opted to keep things simple.  We did not add anything to our car other than paint.  I attempted to shape the block of wood into something a bit more aerodynamic by using the basic tools we had at home.  It was slow going and I felt like I was making a mess of the whole thing.  But that’s okay.

We missed the event where the boys went a local high school and used their wood shop to have their cars cut.  Definitely doing that next year; lesson learned!

We ran into one small problem at registration.

When we put the axles and wheels on, part of the undercarriage splintered off.  So we glued it back into place but it didn’t sit evenly. The car would roll on the table but one wheel wouldn’t roll in the measuring box. A minor panic ensued but that’s why we went to the first registration event so that there was time to adjust anything as needed.  We got everything fixed and surrendered our car on Friday evening.

On derby day, Kiddo participated in running a small carnival as part of a badge requirement.  When they planned for games, his suggested to Julie (one of our Den Leaders) was called What’s In The Sock?  He explained to me that they’d done something similar at school.  When I googled it, I could only find something similar listed as a bachelorette party game (but whatever).

Basically you fill a sock with small items and using only their sense of touch, your participants have to figure out what the items are.  We had a few people stop by and take a quick guess and I wasn’t feeling too optimistic about our turn out.  But then we had one little girl who was determined to get all the items and her perseverance drew a bit of a crowd.

We ran in three heats and didn’t do too badly -3rd three times and 4th once.  In talking with other parents after, there are a ton of things I can do different next year.  Apparently YouTube is the place to go.  I know for sure that we’ll be adding some weights.  Other scouts in our den were very helpful in giving Kiddo suggestions modifications.  The winning scout had a plain car, no frills car he named Bear Naked.  It was cute – he also happens to be our Den leader’s son, which earned his dad a fair amount of roasting.

This was the event that convinced Kiddo to join Scouts and I’m glad that he had such a great time participating.


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