Monday, February 16, 2015

Chapas: How to Play!

I was going to wait until Earth Day to post this.  After all, playing “chapas” (bottlecaps) is such a great way to reuse something we would normally toss.

However, it is so cold here in NYC that my kids are itching to get crafty and play games.  Any sort of competition peaks their interest, and a chapas race is no exception.

My husband grew up in Spain playing chapas.  It is typically an outdoor game, played with anywhere from 2 to a half-dozen friends.  

Designing your Chapas:

The fun begins before the race!  Every good player has an arsenal of chapas to choose from, and these chapas must be personalized.

First, pick out your chapas.  Usually, metal bottlecaps are best, either from soda or beer bottles.  However, a small plastic water bottle cap has been known to win a race or two.

On a piece of paper, draw circles that are the size of the inside of the bottle cap. 

Decorate these circles with your initials, a logo, a small design…

Cut the circles out carefully, and fit them inside the bottle caps.

The Race:

Great!  Now you have a number of personalized chapas.  But how do you play?

The rules are simple:  A course is drawn with chalk and players take turns flicking their bottlecaps toward the finish line. If you flick your chapa outside of the lines, you lose a turn.  If someone flicks their chapa into yours, you must start over. 

Here's an example of a course that my kids drew this fall:

Here is a video of kids playing chapas:

And a really cool beach competition (check out the last minute or so for the race in action):

Now you are ready to find a race!  Suerte!!!

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