InterAmericas' Hash

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In the Spotlight – InterAmericas’ Hash (40th Anniversary)

By Ed “Hazukashii” Howell
16 Feb 2024

The first InterAmericas’ Hash (INTERAM) was the brain child of Giles ‘Patchwork Quilt’ Paget-Wilkes (PWQ). PWQ had been in living and working in San Jose, Costa Rica, and was lucky enough to have the opportunity to travel around Latin America. Unfortunately, he had a hard time contacting and attending other hash clubs. Eventually, he was able to join the Nassau H3 (Bahamas) for a hash run, to his great delight. While there though, he was speaking with a harriette who mistakenly told him that hashing had originated in the Bahamas, and was totally unaware that other hash clubs existed. This would start the wheels turning in PWQ’s mind that eventually turned into INTERAM.

Returning to San Jose, PWQ started compiling a list of hash clubs in the Americas, so he could keep in touch once contact was made. This would allow for other hashers to find clubs while they were traveling, or when they moved to a new location, they had inspiration to start their own new club. At this time, PWQ was also reaching out to other clubs worldwide, and soon learned about the upcoming INTERHASH in Sydney, Australia. Unfortunately, due to time, distance, and available funds, he was unable to attend, but gave him the idea of organizing a hash event more local. According to PWQ . . . “I began considering an Interhash-type event to be held in the Americas, especially for hashers like myself who could not afford the trip to the Far East. This sort of event could pull together into a network of all the chapters that lay scattered about the Americas from Chile to Canada.” He also wanted to give hashers from other parts of the world the opportunity to visit the Americas for an event in the odd years, opposite INTERHASH that was being held in the even years.

PWQ went on to state . . . “In order to promote the idea and to further my hash ‘network’ instincts, I began publishing the Interhashional News, which was eventually taken over by ASYNC and Mr. Spock for many years.” On a personal note, I acquired my first copy of the Interhashional News from Mr. Spock in the early 90s, and successfully used it to hash across the USA in summer of 1993. PWQ continues . . . “Slowly I gathered a collection of ‘good’ names, addresses, and hash contacts, and by February 1984, I was in tough with most of the existing chapters in the USA and Latin America, thanks to San Jose’s colonizing efforts.” He figured by this time, with the San Jose hash having over 100 members, and regularly having over 50 turning up on a weekly basis, that they were big enough and ready to host a large-scale hash event.

PWQ described the first INTERAM as . . .

          The first InterAmericas was a full four-day event held on the 16-19th February 1984, and was attended by 75 visitors from 16 different chapters in 8 countries. With great local participation, numbers swelled to over 200 for the Sunday run, which took place at over 6,000 feet on the side of one of Costa Rica’s volcanos in silvering mist and pine trees. This in contrast to the day before, when the gathering was ferried out to a lonely Pacific Island in an old fishing boat. They drank thirteen cases of beer on the way to the run site, and on the third check the hares accidently set fire to the dry brush, sending most of the pack fleeing the flames by jumping off a cliff into the ocean like lemmings!

Watch PWQ tell the story of founding INTERAM.

At that point, the die was cast, and INTERAM was born. Based on the success of this first InterAm, Atlanta, Georgia was selected to host in 1985. The event would be moved to the odd years, opposite Interhash, to allow travelers to attend their regional big event as well as the larger Interhash (without extending the travel budget and vacation time to far). Successive year that followed are listed below, and actual programs are linked for those available.

This description comes from Moon . . . My first InterAm was San Diego 89. We decided to make a bid there, but the Cheeseheads won out. Made bid in Waukesha with the same result. By then, Pittsburgh H3 was hosting our analversery weekend to well over 200 halfminds. We had finally gathered enough cred that we felt confident for a bid in Trinidad 97. Please note that we were the only ones making a serious bid.
Well, thanks to Dog breath and Dick Tracy (me, Folker and Dead Kennedy were sleeping off our promotional party), we got the bid for 99. Our goal was to have fun and the Pittsburgh hounds stepped up. We booked the entire Sheraton Station Square for Close to 700 people. We formed committees for all aspects of the event. Runs, beer, habby, entertainment, etc.  The event offered a Thursday Okinawa trail that ended in a hot tub large enough for 100 folks. Friday offered 8 city trails where the buses that dropped people off picked up the folks that ran from the hotel. The city allowed us to après on a public wharf on the Monongahela River. We followed up with a midnight river cruise.  Saturday offered 8 rural trails at all the points of the compass with folks gathering at four venues for catered meals. Note: We used wedding caterers for most meals.  Sunday, we all gathered after trail at a local farm for down downs and a stage presentation for skits.  Our biggest party was at the hotel ballroom and because we were exclusive, the costumes were risqué. A Rhode Island hasher only wore a bow tie...on his junk.  People hung around Labor Day and helped finish 126 kegs. A good time was had by all and I am still very proud of our kennel for making it happen.

Some of the event shirts were inappropriate to be worn in public, but all previous T-shirts can be viewed at 

If your hash club is interested in hosting a future INTERAM, this CHARTER outlines the process.

For many more articles like this on the history of hashing, check out . . . In the Spotlight.