This weekend marks the return of the Marana Game Day Cornhole Tournament, the largest event of its kind in the area. Bragging rights are at stake to crown the Cornhole Champions of Marana, and arguably the greatest Cornhole teams in Pima County.
The Marana Game Day Cornhole Tournament is Saturday, October 7, 2017 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Quarry Pines Golf Course. The cost is just $30 per two-person team, or $40 on the day of. There are prizes for the top-three teams, as well as other side games, food, beverages, and television showing college football.
Better yet, the top team wins $300, with the next two teams winning $200 and $100 respectively.
The sport of Cornhole is one with a glorious, if not properly documented past. Much of the history of the sport is little more than myth. There is not recorded evidence of Big Joe Peckinpah’s perfect game at the 1924 Iowa State Fair and Pig Roast. Video footage of Team USA’s dramatic come-from-behind win at the 1956 World Cup in Rio De Janeiro has been lost and who doesn’t remember the infamous “Wonderful World of Disney Bowl” when the final three throws of the 1978 National Championships were interrupted when ABC switched from coverage to a showing of “Escape From Witch Mountain” on Wonderful World of Disney. No one saw Daniel De La Cruz win the title on the final throw, edging three-time national champion Marcus McGilicutty.
No team has been the subject to more lore, misinformation, and rumor than the Cornelius-Hollister twins. Wilber and Constantine Cornelius-Hollister were once at the top of the Cornhole world, but soon dropped off the map after the infamous collapse at the 1997 Cornhole-A-Palooza and were never heard from again…that is, until now. The Cornelius-Hollister twins have announced they will return to action at Marana Game Day, ending a 20-year exile from the sport that made them almost famous.
Who can forget that fateful day in the spring of 1997? The greatest team in the word appeared to be on their way to their third straight Cornhole-A-Palooza title. They were on one of the greatest rolls in the history of the sport. They were on their way to the grand slam. They had already won Cornhole Mania ’97, Bag Bowl XXVI, and Uncle Jimmy’s BBQ Games and Antique Tractor Show, and just needed to take home another Cornhole-A-Palooza title.
Holding a three-point lead with one throw left, the Cornelius-Hollister twins seemed to win it all when the final throw by Brazilian national champ came up short, earning just a single point. All the Cornelius-Hollister twins needed to do was intentionally miss the board and they would win. An overconfident Wilber Cornelius-Hollister threw his bag straight up in the air and began the celebration. Normally beanbags do not bounce, but on this day his did. The bag landed a good four-feet in front of the board, but bounced straight at the board, knocking the three bags on the board off, and then skidding off to the side. To this day physicists cannot figure out how it happened, but all those in attendance agree that it did. Instead of winning the Grand Slam of Cornhole, the Cornelius-Hollister twins were now the subject of the most heartbreaking loss in sports history.
As rain began falling at the Dubuque, Iowa auxiliary fairgrounds, no trophies were hoisted. No legacies were made. What looked to be a coronation, was instead a funeral. There was no grand slam. There were no legends made.
The last image was of a devastated Wilber Cornelius-Hollister sitting slumped in the muddy parking lot of the fairgrounds. He would give up the sport, and would not be seen again.
His brother Constantine tried to go on with other partners, but a series of injuries and a PED scandal, the use of corn syrup “to be one with the corn”, led to his retirement in 1998. Saddled with Gingivitis of the Small Intestine and a knee murmur, Constantine left the sport, though he did coach Trinidad and Tobago to a third place finish in the Pan-Caribbean Games in 2001.
On the September 15, the Cornelius-Hollister twins made it official, holding a press conference to announce their return. Though no media members attended, they did release a press release announcing that they had “unfinished business” and would return to the sport. Constantine had undergone experimental treatments to cure the intestinal gingivitis and had kicked his corn syrup addiction. Wilbur did not reveal his whereabouts for the past 20 years although said he had to undergo intense psycho-therapy, as well as lose a considerable amount of weight “to get back into throwing shape.”
“We are dedicated to resurrecting our careers and taking the sport of Cornhole to the next level,” they said in their release.
To try to beat the Cornelius-Hollister twins, or to make your own equally inaccurate memories, sign up for Marana Game Day Cornhole Tournament. Early registration is still underway.
Editor’s note: There are no Cornelius-Hollister twins, at least none that we know of. Nor, sadly, is there really a Cornhole-A-Palooza, Cornhole Mania, or Bag Bowl that we know of. What is real is that the Marana Game Day Cornhole Tournament is a lot of fun, and if you are not registered, you should be.
Editor’s note Pt. 2: As far as we know corn syrup is not a Performance Enhancer for Cornhole or any other sport.