Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Teens Get Down and Dirty for Fun with Annual Crud War; Young Life's Yearly Mess-Fest Brings Teens out for "Fun and Fellowship"

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Teens Get Down and Dirty for Fun with Annual Crud War; Young Life's Yearly Mess-Fest Brings Teens out for "Fun and Fellowship"

Article excerpt

Byline: PATTI LEVINE-BROWN

Take one large field, add 150-plus teenagers armed with household and food items, and you have all the ingredients necessary for a totally wild crud war.

This raging battle took place off County Road 220 in Fleming Island on Labor Day, when members of Clay County Young Life engaged in a number of competitive games such as egg roulette, crud twister, crud slip and slide, crud art, the tomato sauce water balloon toss, the gross Frisbee toss, bobbing for onions, shaving cream hair-dos and musical chairs with pork and beans.

According to Chris Matthews, who organized the event, the crud war is a wonderful way to bring young people together to share in fun and fellowship.

"Young Life is the side of church that teens typically do not see," Matthews said. "Many teens see the Christian faith as a set of rules. We see it as a lifestyle, and we demonstrate that lifestyle through building relationships. As Young Life leaders we put together events like this to bring teens together in fellowship and friendship."

This was the second year that Matthews and some of the Young Life leaders hosted the crud war.

Austin Webb, a Young Life staff member, said when the eggs, horse feed, tomato sauce, flour and pork and beans start flying, it can get really nasty.

"I believe the cloud of flour was at least 30 feet high last year," Webb said. "This event is all about having fun. We don't bring anyone out here to try and force them to make decisions about their faith or tell them what to believe. We just want them to have a good time."

Even before the war got under way, it looked like fun was the name of the game.

"I am sure that a lot of dirt and sausages will be involved," said Andrea Caplin, 16, who took part in the games last year.

Sherry Walsh had a quizzical look on her face as she surveyed the grounds. …

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