So it’s the summer party season. The calendar is full of barbeques, pool parties, bonfires, beach vacations, reunions, riverlot parties, and more. This is the first in a series of articles about the summer games we love to play, and the RIGHT way to play them.
This one hasn’t been around all that long.
It was created in the 1980s in Buffalo, and was played as “trash can Frisbee,” mainly in Western New York, through the 1990s. In 2005 a patent was granted for KanJam and the official rules were established. Now the game is played in all 50 states and internationally.
But that doesn’t mean everybody is clear on the rules.
Sure, there is broad agreement on the basics. Two teams take turns throwing a flying disc between two scoring containers. The object is to be the first team to score 21 points without going over.
Points are scored in three separate ways:
1 point for a “dinger,” which is a throw where a teammate deflects the flying disk and it bounces off the container.
2 points for a “deuce,” which happens when a thrown disk hits the container without being touched by a teammate.
3 points for a “bucket,” which is a throw where a teammate deflects the disk inside the container.
An instant win happens when a thrown disk passes through the Instant Win Slot on the front of the scoring container or lands inside the scoring container without being touched by a teammate.
Fairly simple, but here is where the disagreement begins.
Containers must be placed 50 feet apart, and all throws must be released from BEHIND the front edge of the container, known as the release line … unless the thrower is a female or a male under the age of 13.
These throwers may step forward to a release line 10 feet closer to their partners, AND it is up to their discretion as to when they choose to make a throw from the closer line. For instance, if a game comes to a crucial point, and a female or male under 13 has been throwing from the 50-foot release line, they may choose to move forward to the closer line to get an easier throw.
Other KanJam misconceptions, according to the official rules, include:
Tipping must be done with one hand—Not true, as long as the disc is “deflected,” not “carried.”
If a team lands on 13 exactly, they reduce their point total—The only time a point total is reduced is if a team scores more than 21 points, at which time they subtract the points awarded on their turn instead of adding them.
Players cannot tip a disk in front of their goal—Players can deflect a disk from anywhere, as long as they don’t touch the scoring container in the process.
Gameplay consists of more than one flying disc—KanJam is played with two containers, two teams, four players, and one disk.
Players must play with a beverage in one of their hands—Not so. That’s awkward.
The official rules state that the above house rules and misconceptions should be ignored to be considered an official KanJam game. A link to those rules follows. www.kanjam.com/Files/HowToPlay/KanJamRules.pdf
There are also KanJam mobile apps available at the iTunes store for Apple devices and at Google Play for Android.
For those experts out there who have the official KanJam rules tattooed on your bodies, there is an opportunity to test your skills and knowledge coming up at the 2014 KanJam World Championship, which will be held at the Gratwick Hose Volunteer Fire Company Picnic Grounds in North Tonawanda, NY, on Saturday, August 9.
Participants can expect a lively competition with over 100 teams registered in this drug- and alcohol-free event. The ultimate prize is the coveted Hammer Trophy awarded to the 2014 KanJam world champions. The deadline to register online is July 31, cost is $60 per team, and proceeds benefit #LipsitzStrong to assist in the awareness of Esophageal Cancer and the North Tonawanda Police Athletic League.
Find out more and register at: www.kanjamleague.com/worldchampionship/2014.
Editor’s Note: This week begins a series of articles on lots of fun summer games for you and your family. Weston will be giving lots of great ideas to get you outside, moving, and enjoying the dog days of summer. Upcoming games will include: horseshoes, bocci ball, cornhole, spikeball and more!