Regina Gamers Raise Thousands for Souls Harbour

media2016 Play With Your Food

Photo by Lisa Schick/980 CJME

Davey McLellan after playing board games for 24-hours as part of Play With Your Food. Oct 16, 2016

All grouped together in two basement rooms, dozens of people raced camels, hunted for Dracula, and settled Catan – all to raise thousands of dollars for Souls Harbour Rescue Mission.

The annual event is a collaboration between Souls Harbour and SaskGames called Play With Your Food where people play board games for 24-hours straight, and this is its fourth year.

According to Murray Bennett, chairman of the event, they raised over $42,000 for the charity, bringing the four-year total to more than $120,000. Bennett said the event gets bigger and better every year.

“People just, they love to play board games and an opportunity to come out and play games for an extended period of time and help out a really important charity is really meaningful,” said Bennett.

“We’re doing this for Souls Harbour. Souls Harbour’s a great partner and they’re doing really important things in the community and that’s why we’re here.”

Bennett said about 110 people took part, 60 of those staying up and playing games for the full 24-hour marathon.

Bennett played some games himself, saying you’re not going to find Monopoly at one of these events. He explained that most of the games there were European-style board games, which tend to be a bit more involved than just rolling a die.

For the players to get to such a huge total there was some inventive fund-raising at work.

Among other things, Davey McLellan’s team created and ran their own escape room – an activity where a group is locked in a room and has to perform tasks or solve puzzles to get out.

“Ours was more paper and tape based, but it was board game themed to coincide with the event.”

McLellan said he believed it was one of the more successful fundraisers, bringing in about $900.

He stayed up the full 24 hours, playing things like Fury of Dracula, and was losing his voice by Sunday morning.

“Having a great time, but it takes a toll at hour 20,” McLellan paused. “Or whatever it was.”

This was his second year taking part in the event, and McLellan said this year was way better.