Jack The Meeple Goes Hog Wild In Arkansas
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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I was surprised and fortunate enough to be the first host on Jack the Meeple’s worldwide tour. Jack is definitely a happy little meeple, and my family and I enjoyed keeping him entertained during his visit. This geeklist provides a recap of Jack’s activities in Fort Smith, Arkansas.




The full story behind the adventures of Jack the Meeple and his predecessor, Bob the Meeple, can be found here.
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1. Board Game: Your Surprise Package [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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I came home from work two weeks ago on Wednesday to find an unexpected package waiting for me. When I opened it up, much to my surprise there was Jack! I could hardly believe that Jack’s first stop would be to visit me and my family in Fort Smith. Jack came packaged with lots of goodies from Scott in Indianapolis: Amish Country popcorn, some excellent spicy ranch popcorn, an Indy 500 lanyard, a Hard Rock lapel pin, a Love kitchen magnet, some delicious local maple syrup, and a lucky GenCon die. The spicy ranch popcorn and the syrup were scrumptious, and I am busy eating my way through the remaining popcorn. Thanks Scott!

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2. Board Game: Super Dungeon Explore: Calico Kate [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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We were so excited with Jack’s arrival, we decided to take him out to one of our favorite local restaurants, Calico County. The food is tremendous and every meal comes with complimentary cinnamon rolls! Below you can see Jack eyeing our food. My wife ordered her favorite dish, chicken and dumplings with a side of black-eyed peas. I chose the Wednesday night special, deep-fried spare ribs, with sides of macaroni and cheese and deep-fried corn on the cob. (The breading used when frying at Calico County is simply the best I have ever tasted!) Even with Jack’s help, it was a struggle to finish everything—the cinnamon rolls ended up being saved for breakfast the next day.

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3. Board Game: Mad Scientist: Final Exam [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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Unfortunately, my job as a university professor at the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith (UAFS) intervened for the remainder of the evening, as I had to write an exam for two of my College Chemistry classes. It was easier writing the exam with Jack there keeping me company. Jack got to hang out with my other computer buddies, Cthulhu and Fred the basset.



After we finished the exam, it was time for bed and we thought Jack would be most comfortable spending his overnight hours hanging out on our big game bookcases. This would be his home-away-from-home for the week.

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4. Board Game: Go to the Head of the Class [Average Rating:4.59 Overall Rank:16877]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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Jack tagged along with me to campus on Thursday, although he wasn’t that thrilled with getting up early. He enjoyed a front-row seat in my College Chemistry class at 8 am (look at all of those super-excited chemistry students!), although he did start to nod off during the last part of class. Jack had to stay safely tucked away during my lab class later that day—I didn’t have any safety goggles small enough for him.



Jack also spent some quality time in my office during my office hours on Thursday, hanging out with some of my office shelf buddies: Easter Island head, moose, Lil’ Red, the Black Knight, and the Swedish Chef.

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5. Board Game: Volley & Bayonet [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:8683]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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The Wife and I took Jack to watch a UAFS volleyball game Thursday night. The Lady Lions swept visiting McMurry University 26-24, 25-15, and 25-23 to stay undefeated and in first place in their conference. Jack tirelessly cheered on the team and also feasted on some delicious concession snacks.



After the game, we took Jack out to see the Numa the Lion statue outside the arena—I think Jack was a little scared of Numa!

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6. Board Game: Oregon [Average Rating:6.77 Overall Rank:1093]
D a v i d B u r k e y
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Fort Smith
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Jack stayed home on Friday while I was on campus. However, that night the Wife and I did play Oregon for the first time in several months while Jack cavorted with the cowboy meeples. There was much mining of gold (especially by the Wife), but I was able to score enough other points to pull out a victory.




Jack guarding the remaining gold stash!
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7. Board Game: Weekend [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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Unfortunately, a teacher workshop had me back on campus all day Saturday. I took Jack along to keep me company during the day, but forgot to take any pictures of Jack with the middle-school science teachers participating in the workshop. Even worse, the cold that I had caught early that week now decided to kick into high gear and I retreated to the couch to rest and watch football the rest of the evening. Jack wandered off and ended up playing Tales of Xillia with my daughter. Sunday was filled with me grading exams (and sneezing a lot), so Jack hung out on the games bookshelf all day.
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8. Board Game: Escape from the Hidden Castle [Average Rating:6.43 Overall Rank:2231]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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I have great faith in fools; self-confidence my friends call it. Edgar Allan Poe
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By Monday, having left Jack to his own devices too often, I shouldn’t have been surprised that he had cultivated quite a following among the other denizens of the boardgame bookshelves. That night, feeling peckish for a midnight snack, I accidentally crashed a Meeple party being held in Jack’s honor.


Jack’s Meeple Party!



The Guest of Honor



Snack Time!



The Party Goers’ Rides
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9. Board Game: Firenze [Average Rating:7.28 Overall Rank:734]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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I started feeling a little better on Tuesday, and my day got even better when I came home from campus to see that my recent purchase of Firenze had arrived. I have played this game a bunch on Yucata and it has become one of my favorites so I am excited to finally have my own copy. I quickly enlisted Jack’s help in the unboxing and punching. Jack enjoyed looking at the pretty board and pieces and also playing in the packing peanuts.


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10. Board Game: Ra: The Dice Game [Average Rating:6.77 Overall Rank:1228]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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After a yummy dinner of homemade pepperoni pizza, the Wife and I got in one more game with Jack. This time we picked one of our most played games, Ra: the Dice Game. Again Jack brought me all of the luck, as I cruised to a big win. Jack and I then spent the rest of the evening baking ginger snaps and assembling the rest of the goodies to send with Jack on his next visit.


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11. Board Game: Mr. Jack [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:453]
D a v i d B u r k e y
United States
Fort Smith
Arkansas
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Wednesday arrived and it was time for Jack to hit the road, leaving for his next stop on his big adventure. I said my goodbyes to Jack in the morning and trusted the Wife to see him off safely later that day. Thanks for all of the good times, Jack, and thanks again to Scott for letting me be a part of Jack’s journey!
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