Over a year long, and my gaming programs are still going strong. They numbers vary from month to month, and our committee is hoping that it will be possible to get separate systems for each branch.
Even barring that, I have good news.
My gaming program got coverage in the local newspaper! My ebbing and flowing numbers may just get the jolt they need! Hurray!
Oh, that bit about me needing a milkshake?
That comes from the fact that I learned about the reporter's visit just a few hours before the start of the program (at least I got notified at all!), and my numbers this month were certainly not as high as I would have liked. So, two, count them, two, whole teenagers showed up for the program. I ran around like a mad chicken, grabbed some young-ish departmental aides to fill the room, made two global announcements, and soon had nine authentic teenagers in the program.
Any newspaper photographer worth his salt can make that look like a full room, right?
The reporter didn't seem too disappointed, and, fortunately, I had told her that my numbers vary and haven't yet topped 20. She had plenty of folks to talk to, including my loyal volunteer who runs the "board" and ensures that people of equal skill and/or age compete against each other in early rounds, and at least one parent.
The departmental aides, young though they looked, were stomped by the authentic teenagers, and a triumphant teen took home the final prize, gloating all the while.
And yes, I did get a milkshake.