Games Night

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Have You Ever Come to Games Night?

©2003 Beth Weiss, Published in the January 2003 MPULSE, The Dayton Area Mensa Newsletter

Games Night seems to be one of the foundations of Dayton Area Mensa activities.  Itís held monthly, always seems to have a good turnout, and is more predictable than some areaís Monthly Meetings.

 The first Mensa event I attended was a Games Night at Yvonne and Skinnerís house last December.  (Yvonne is our RG chair, by the way).  I had sent in my paperwork to Mensa, and hadnít received anything back yet, but I e-mailed Yvonne and she said, ďSure, come.Ē  So I did.  I stopped on the way, picked up a bottle of wine, circled around their area a bit before I found their house, and went to the door.   I donít even remember what we played, except for euchre and Mindtrap.  I donít remember what we ate, either, but I do remember there was quite a spread.  I met more people than I could place with names at the end of the evening.  I was made to feel extremely welcome.  Niki (the RG Hospitality Chair) suggested I come to the New Yearís Eve party a few weeks later.  And I went home about 2:30 in the morning.

 I was hooked on Games NightóIíd had a great time, and eagerly looked forward to the next one.  And the next one.  We played games Iíd never seen or heard of before:  Quiddler, Apples to Apples, weird variations of Trivial Pursuit that Steve (GamesMeister!) had heard of and bought.  We played old favorites that everyone knew: Scrabble, Trivial Pursuit, multiple tables of euchre.   Each month, different games get played, based on what we feel like, what people bring, whatís new.  Just last month, Nita (Programs and Speakers Chair for the RG) brought Set, which Iíd never played before.  And Niki didnít know I had Quiddler, so she brought it and we had two copies of it. 

Somewhere along the line, it became clear that Games Night needed some additional hosts.  John (who is also now our Scholarship Dude) stepped up, and a few months later, so did I.  Hosting Games Night is a riotóI have to mop the kitchen floor L but the rest of the prep work is fun.  I prepare a few things to put out of, course.  And people bring foodóso much food that I run out of counter space.  Dayton-style hospitality runs deep!  At the end of a Games Night, I have to press some of the leftovers on people to take home.    We used the leftover vegetable tray to provide the fillings for the next morningís omeletsóhave to have something to feed those overnight guests.

Overnight guests?  Yup.  Games Night in Dayton is so much fun that overnight guests come in for the weekend just to join the party.  In October, there were two from Columbus, one from St. Louis, one from Michigan, and one from Indiana.  In November, we imported two Michigan Mensans and two Indiana Mensans.   Of course, one has to define Ďovernightí carefully, since most of us at the house didnít go to bed until 4:00 or so. 

We start with local folks and add visiting Mensans.  But thatís clearly not enough.  Last month, Yvonne e-mailed me and asked about inviting a few people who arenít Mensans, but often come to Games Night.  I knew them both and hadnít even realized they werenít Mensansóbut sure, the more the merrier.  Itís not like we check IDs at the door or anything.  (Food offerings and games we check, ids arenít as interesting)

 With both Games Night and Chanukah in mind, I had a great shopping trip at the Wizards of the Coast store at Pentagon City mall yesterday.  I bought Setóbecause Nita wants her game back J.  And I bought Five Crowns.  And Guillotine.  And Cranium.  And my own copy of Apples to Apples.   Iíll bring them all to the next Games Night at Johnís.  Weíll see if there are any takers!  And weíll see if we add you to the Games Night crowd!

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