ELMHURST – Competing for neighborhood bragging rights, civic pride and a $25 property tax credit in 2017 for every household within the team’s electoral subdivision, Elmhurst residents representing each of the city’s seven wards battled one another in both traditional and non-traditional games of skill at Berens Park this week during the “Elmhurst Olympics”, a six-day event co-sponsored by the Elmhurst City Council and the Elmhurst Park District.
With decisive victories in Lawn Darts, Beer Pong and the Hoverboard Freestyle Half Pipe – along with a shocking upset Thursday morning over the heavily-favored Seventh Ward in Mixed Pairs Unflooding – the Third Ward team bulldozed the competition en route to 23 gold medals and 47 medals in total. More than 150 Elmhurst residents participated in 63 events from Sunday to Friday that utilized various parts of Berens Park, including the sledding hill, soccer fields and The Hub’s batting cages, mini golf course and sprayground.
“Our team fought like hell,” said Michael Bram, Third Ward alderman and co-captain of the team comprised of citizens who live on the north side of Elmhurst. “And I think that if we had a little more time to practice, we could have won the Rhythmic Yoga all-arounds and the Wine Bottle Uncorking relays, too.” The city’s Fourth Ward finished a distant second in most medals with 29 total, edging the First Ward (27 medals) on Sunday with a medal sweep in the Yogurt Eating Contest.
During the two-hour opening ceremonies on Sunday, Elmhurst mayor Steve Morley welcomed competitors and spectators with a rousing eight-minute speech, during which he referred to participants as “tributes” and incorrectly explained that each contest would be a “fight to the death”.
“I’m already looking forward to the 2017 games,” said Morley in a press conference following the closing ceremonies Friday afternoon. “And if we can add a ‘no-holds-barred’ cage match or some kind of human sacrifice, I think we’ll get some interested sponsors for next year.”