Allowing oneself to play, no matter what age, really should be such a simple thing. Nothing quite screams "play!" like Port Townsend's numerous festivals and parades. They have a celebration for everything. Everything. Port Townsend plays and it plays hard and the people love it. Characters among the crowd begin to look familiar. The White Rabbit shows up every time. Alter Egos establish a pattern of being and come out to play every chance they get.
A great mockery of rules underlies the entire weekend of the Kinetic Sculpture Races. Judges are bribed, the crowd heckles and the racers count their blessings before descending The Great Hill for their initial brake test. The course takes the sculptures and their determined humans to several different locations where crossing mud, sand and water become the days' challenges that give way to hours and hours and hours of slowly churning pedals and the sounds of rupturing parts. What also underlies this event is a sense of community built around play, craftsmanship and acceptance. The people of Port Townsend have created a space where individuality is welcomed and nurtured and they graciously extend the invitation to all. It is vital reminder that the human must play.