While you were hiding under the bed for the 100th time over the weekend, 320 adults got together in the abandoned Italian village of Consonno to participate in the 6th annual Nascondino World Championship — also known as the Hide-And-Seek World Championship, to you non-spicy meatballs. Not to be confused by the World’s Biggest Hide-And-Seek attempt, which also happened this past weekend in the U.K., this competition was originally founded in Bergamo, Italy in 2010 by CTRL Magazine. Turns out crouching in the closet is more of a European practice than you thought (translation: those sneaky French bastards won).
When they first started the event it was simply the “Hide-And-Seek Championship” and consisted of 15 teams total. It wasn’t until the following year when it grew to 25 teams that they upgraded to the “Hide-And-Seek-World Championship” which organizer Giorgio Moratti described to Quartz as more of an ambition than a reality. Such ambitions have become more realistic this year, as it has expanded to 64 teams of 5. The new location doesn’t hurt either. Consonno, located in the foothills of the Alps in northern Italy, was supposed to have been their country’s equivalent of Las Vegas. But a 1976 landslide brought it down by destroying the one road that connected the remote village to a town (cue the Fleetwood Mac). Though it’s occasionally used for movies, Consonno is a ghost town made for competitive hiding and seeking.
Even if your kid could get to Italy, this competition is for grown ups only — likely because letting children run wild through dilapidated buildings is a liability in every country. If the competition keeps growing the way it has been over the past 6 years, your kid can get in on the action when they turn 18 and backpack through Europe against your will. By that time it might even be an Olympic sport. The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Committee had expressed interest in the event, but the campaign to make it official was unsuccessful. But if it ever gets through, Michael Phelps will be ready for a comeback. He’s got a ton of training ahead of him, but then again, so does your kid.