When trying for the record for the world’s biggest tug-of-war, it’s a good idea to use a durable rope. When students and teachers at a middle school in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania made a bid for the title on June 13th, 1978, they used a 2,000 foot long, 1½ inch thick nylon rope. Not surprisingly, it broke, resulting in injuries to two hundred of the 2,274 participants Fifty had to be hospitalized, with injuries that included severed tendons and lost fingertips. The biggest tug-of-war record is currently held by the people of Naha, Japan (27,000 of them). The size of their rope? Well, it weighs over forty tons, so I’d have to say, bigger. They’ve been doing this on Okinawa Island since the seventeenth century, however, so they’ve had time to get it right. Like the adults supposedly supervising those kids should have.
Personal Tug-Of-War Tidbit: As regards sports, the Duke siblings were not known for being overly enthusiastic, or even team-minded, so I still marvel that one of our schools was once foolish enough to put one of my brothers and I on the same Sports Day team. One of the competitions involved a tug-of-war, and the Orange Team did not win it, because two of the children, who shall remain nameless, let go as soon as the rope started to burn their hands. Our team did win overall, but not because of renewed efforts in other areas by us. It was  because we had several members absent and were assigned bonus points for each station. We even got ribbons, the only sports-related awards my mother ever got to put in her children’s keepsake box. (Not that she cared. Our aversion to sports was inherited from her.)

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