Gold Rush

The Mayans didn’t screw around when it came to sports. After all, the extinct civilization regularly executed athletes who failed to secure victory on the ancient ball courts of the Mesoamerica. (Talk about the agony of defeat!)

Luckily, the participants at this weekend’s Cuervo Games in Old Town Scottsdale won’t suffer the same deadly fate if they stumble while attempting the Mayan-inspired challenge known as the “Barrel Roll.” Dignity will be sacrificed instead of their lives if they fail at climbing a miniature Mayan pyramid while being pelted with inflatable Jose Cuervo casks.

Tequila-themed tasks such as the Barrel Roll are just part of the outlandish challenges that constitute the Cuervo Games, which take place on Saturday, May 7. Described by its organizers as “WipeOut meets American Gladiators,” the kooky competition will also feature teams of four scaling a 20-foot rock wall, grabbing flags while strung up 30 feet in the air, or navigating a gauntlet of goofy obstacles -- all of which has to be done sober, mind you. Cash prizes and a chance to compete in the national finals later this year in Las Vegas await the winners.

The Cuervo Games take place at 7 p.m. at 7375 East Stetson Drive in Scottsdale. The event will also feature a performance by pop-punkers Good Charlotte.
Sat., May 7, 7 p.m., 2011
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Benjamin Leatherman is a staff writer at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.