by Eric Ginsburg

The first round of the Guilford Cup Challenge, a charity flag football game between Greensboro and Guilford County employees this past weekend, has me thinking: What if more city leaders — including council members — squared off in athletic competitions?

People would pay good money to see Action Greensboro Director Cecelia Thompson and Downtown Greensboro Inc. President Jason Cannon in a competitive parkour showdown. Or Councilwoman Nancy Hoffmann and critic Katei Cranford in an arm-wrestling battle. Ben “The Troublemaker” Holder has been quiet since landing a job with the city of Greensboro, but I bet he could be convinced to make an appearance. Think javelin toss or dunk contest on a kiddy hoop.

City and county employees have both reported that there was a significant level of trash talk leading up to the flag football match, but it’s still a good-natured affair and for a good cause. This idea would be in keeping with that spirit and purpose, though a lot of the pairings that come to mind might seem a little more personal. I’m open to suggestions, and volunteers.

It could, of course, be extended to Winston-Salem and High Point, too. Can we convince Wendy Fuscoe and Judy Mendenhall to a ping-pong, foosball or darts faceoff? What if Wake Forest President Nathan Hatch and High Point University President Nido Qubein agreed to a freestyle swimming matchup? I kinda want to see Joe Scott at Geeksboro and Lawren Dasai at A/perture compete at croquet. Would a city council split into teams and play laser tag?

Hopefully these examples are enough to “get your creative juices flowing,” as they say. Jot down some other ideas and shoot them my way. And if you want to organize something like this or volunteer, please, dive in. All I ask is that the showdowns continue to benefit worthy causes such as food pantries and that the battles maintain at least some degree of positive energy.

But I’m just here to churn out ideas. It’s up to you to run with it.


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