What started as a day of fun between Al Ripley’s college buddies, neighbors, friends, and family has transformed into the 16th-annual Alympics, properly named after the founder and three-time champion. Every June, the Ripleys’ Southlake home, as well as those of their neighbors, is transformed into an all-encompassing sports arena and entertainment Mecca. Al and his wife, Melissa, start planning the weekend affair months in advance, and friends and family travel from far and wide to attend the event.
On the day of the Alympics, as many as 40 participants—paired together as father-son teams or by random drawing—compete in events such as poker, volleyball, and darts for a chance at induction into the exclusive champion’s circle. Membership has its privileges: access to a well-stocked break room, a Masters-green “Alympics Champion” hat, reserved parking in Al’s driveway, and an invitation to the champions gathering the night before.
With home-field advantage and three wins under his belt, Al is usually the favorite. “Everyone’s putts seem to break inches before the hole,” his neighbor Tom Roush says, “but Al seems to sink them every time.” Since Al’s eye is on his first father-son championship, we predict he’s secretly polishing his golf stroke this very minute.