I Remember Mama….

By Karen Murray-Alspach

July 18, 2011

Category: Uncategorized

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My Mom loved to play games with us girls. Board games, Card games…you name it. Memories of summer vacations come to mind when a gentle breeze hits my skin and the birds chirp. No…I didn’t live a Disney life. But our Mom sure knew how to have some fun. We’d gather the games and head for the front porch on the hottest of days. There were wild swings of strategy as we sent those game pieces back home to begin again. Or counted doubles time after time (she had a knack for that).

Of course, I’m talking about Pollyanna which was one of our favorites. But little is known about this game, put out by Parker Brothers in 1915 and 1967. As mentioned on BoardGameGeeks.com, this game was based on the 1913 children’s novel by Eleanor H. Porter, and was also known as The Glad Game in those early years. Pollyanna was often thought to be a variation of the game of India, Parcheesi. The object was to move your players from the start space all the way around the board to your home space. But you had to avoid getting caught by the other players. Which was what made the game so much fun for us. And if you had two or more players on a space, it formed a blockade which couldn’t be broken until one of the players moved.

But Pollyanne is different than Parcheesi in a several ways….fewer spaces, four turnouts off the main path and doubles are handled differently just to name a few. What I do remember about playing this game was the shrieks of laughter as you rounded the bend for home. And the moans when you couldn’t get through your enemies blockade. We did while away quite a few hours learning strategy and sportsmanship as we hung out with our Mom on a lazy, summer day!

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