For a little background, my son and his friend--let's say "M"--have been friends for almost 5 years now. My son will usually spend one or two nights a month over at M's house, and my son has also gone on two weekends trips with M out of town. My son is 12, and M is 10.
Earlier this week, M was at our house, and he said he wanted my son to go to a paintball contest with him next weekend. His older brother (currently 16 or 17 and is not going this year) has gone the last two years, but M has never gone before. I asked for more information about it, and M told me that his dad was willing to take my son and M camping the day before the contest. His dad is not participating in the contest, and M said the dad would "check in occasionally" with the two kids. My response was that we might already have plans this upcoming weekend, but I'll look into it more.
The existing plans fell through, and my son kept telling he wanted to do this paintball thing. So I had him call M and get the website information. This is a summary of some of the rules:
- The organizers consider paintball an "honor" sport, but then they offer a prize of a couple thousand for this competition.
- Over 600 people will be in the event.
- No ages listed in the rules.
- At least two webpages pages said things like: no knives, no traps, no alcohol, no drugs.
So after looking at that website, do you think your tween would still want to go?
Would you let your tween go to a paintball competition like this? Why or why not?
Update: I realized today that I never updated you. I asked my son that Friday night what the status was with the invite. He told me that he told M's parents no because he would have to lie about his age, and he's not comfortable doing that. I guess there was 13 and older age requirement that I couldn't find on the website, and my son was unwilling to lie. I wouldn't have signed a consent form either with false information like that anyhow.