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  • Writer's pictureMorgan Short


The 2023 Short Family Games burst forth with energy and excitement, reminding us all why this annual tradition holds a special place in our hearts. Teams checked in at 8:30AM, brimming with anticipation for the day ahead. Little did we know that this year's games would stretch into the wee morning hours of 5AM — a testament to the unwavering spirit of friendly rivalry that courses through our veins.

A wave of fresh faces graced the competition this year. Michelle and Andy Biggs joined as "Bad Decisions", Rae and Grant Simmons rose to the occasion as "Take Em to the Train Station", and Drezden Short entered his inaugural Short Family Games as "Ken" with his partner, Jade as "Barbie". Zach Spychalla also brought along a new partner in Kori Rutkowski, together as Boom Shaka Laka. Finally, we welcomed Cortez and Shelby Arredondo back to the games after a two year hiatus. The new mix of teams reminded us that each year brings its own unique flavor to the mix.

2023's games consisted of 6 yard games, 4 bar games, 4 challenges, 5 minute to win it's, and of course, the Strength and Fortitude Relay. Some key changes were made in this year's games. Volleyball went back to 2x2 with a required pass to your partner. Ramp Shot added Slap Back for 5 points. The Strength & Fortitude Relay consisted of a 50 pound bucket challenge and canoe for the women, and a change to the rock throw for the men. Knee Trembler was added to the Minute to Win It Challenges.

The fight for the podium seemed up for grabs most of the day, but as the sun set on the Short Family, Dunder Mifflin began to take a comfortable lead. Samantha Short & Mack Short claimed their well-deserved victory, once again joining the Champion's Circle - their second claim to the cup after a victory in 2019 as "We're Back". Their tenacity and dedication proved to be a force, and they finished the day with a total of 138 points. Not too far behind, Vamos (Jodi Short & Will Short) cleared Runner's Up with 116 points and Inconceivable (Morgan Short & Jake Short) secured third place with 112 points.

Josh Froyd and Samantha Short had impressive beer slams, claiming the men's and women's horns. The Saboteurs (Carly & Zach) had one of the most memorable and creative videos of all time and were awarded best video. Train Station won Best Team Name / Uniform as Rae and Grant showed up as Rip and Beth from Yellowstone. Catherine and Dom secured the 9th place spot, with their claim to the Spirit Stick, and their rumored final year as Hawk Nation. Finally, Morgan and Jake Short rounded out the day as the Best Drinkers.

2023 Awardwinners

Champion's Cup - Dunder Mifflin - Mack & Samantha Short

Spirit Stick (9th Place) - Hawk Nation - Catherine & Dominick Burkhardt

Best Team Name/Uniform - Train Station - Rae & Grant Simmons

Best Drinkers - Inconceivable - Morgan & Jake Short

Best Video: The Saboteurs - Zach Zellmer & Carly Downhour

Men's Horn: Josh Froyd

Women's Horn: Samantha Short

The Short Family came together to donate 114 pounds of items to the Food Shelf, surpassing 2022's donation. A goal was set for 150 pounds as we think about 2024.

The commisioner checked his FitBit after the event. For Volleyball games, he removed his Fitbit. So those are not counted in the roundup. Here are the details: 56422 steps. 24 miles. Over 8000 calories burned. Almost a marathon. If you add in the steps from volleyball it would most likely add up to the equivalent of a marathon. This is the essence of the Short Family Games. Intense competition. No pathetic excuses. Until next year.


1 - Dunder Mifflin - Mack & Samantha Short - 138 points 2 - Vamos - Will & Jodi Short - 116 points 3 - Inconceivable - Morgan & Jake Short - 112 points 4 - Fire and Ice - Vristol Short & Kaitlyn Cudo - 102 points 5 - Up the Hill - Sydnie & Josh Froyd - 99 points 6 - Boom Shaka Laka - Zach Spychalla & Kori Rutkowski - 97 points 7 - The A Team - Shelby & Cortez Arredondo - 93 points 8 - Cowboys - Quayin & Lilli Short - 84 points

9 - Hawk Nation - Catherine & Dominick Burkhardt - 80 points 10 - No Business - Chris & Bobbie Short - 69 points

11 - The Saboteurs - Zach Zellmer & Carly Downhour - 59 points 12 - Too Much Booty in Dem Pants - Wade & Jessica Short - 51 points 13 - Train Station - Rae & Grant Simmons - 48 points 14 - Frid University - Taylor & Sam Frid - 41 points 15 - Ken and Barbie - Drezden Short & Jade Janikula - 22 points 16 - Bad Decisions - Andy & Michelle Biggs - 17 points

Ideas for 2024

Back to 3 batons in Kubb

4 balls in Ramp Shot

1 hour earlier check in for more sunlight

Cornhole switches on both sides at 11 and switch ends

Only one dart thrown at a time in darts

Game Results 2023

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