My youngest’s birthday fell on Thanksgiving this year. We asked her what she wanted to do. She said she wanted to go to a hotel to swim and then play a game as a family, so Nellie and I went to work. Nellie got the game. I got the hotel. Both were great.
The game was Last Word by Buffalo Games Inc. It’s fairly simple. There are subject cards with categories on them like “vegetables,” “breeds of dogs,” or “places you find water.” Then there are letter cards. Each player gets a subject card.
The round starts when someone flips over a letter card. If you can think of a word that starts with that letter in your category, you shout it out, slam your subject card down, and then everyone else tries to come up with words that start with that letter and fit the category. Or you try to think of words in someone else’s category if they beat you to it. There’s no order to it–you just shout out the words as they come to your head. The last one to come up with a word before the timer buzzes wins that round. The twist that makes it so fun, however, is that the timer is random.
You can play individually, in teams, or some mix (our youngest and I teamed up). Because of the random timer, anyone who can think up a word can play, which means our daughter who is eight could compete with the one that was seventeen.
We had a great time. One of the funniest things about it is that everyone is desperately trying to come up with words. Some fit, some don’t. Some don’t even exist. For example, when we did the category “male names,” number 3 shouted out “Mancake.” We couldn’t stop laughing. I think that one is going to enter the family vocabulary.
We also had a great time at the Park City Peaks hotel. As far as rooms go, they were good rooms. The bed was a bit too soft for me, but perfect for my wife. We got them for $65 a night, which isn’t bad at all. But it was the pool that made the experience.
The pool is an actual pool, not the big bathtubs some newer hotels offer. For example, the deep end is six feet deep. But the cool thing is that half of it is indoors and half of it is out. And the outdoor portion is heated. There’s also a large heated hot tub outside as well. In the picture it’s the thing producing the long row of steam in the back.
It helped that we didn’t have much snow so the place wasn’t crawling with skiers. In fact, we had the pool mostly to ourselves. So imagine: there we were on a November night in this alpine setting, the steam rising off the water, swimming and horsing around underneath the winter stars. It was marvelous. You can be sure we’re going back.
BTW, we had Thanksgiving dinner at a restaurant. Let me recommend this to you. It makes the day a breeze. You can still have your homemade turkey dinner, but picking up the turkey a few days after the holiday allows you to get them for cheap, cheap, cheap.