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World’s Largest Cardboard Fort: Building Dreams One Box at a Time

In a land called Draper, Utah approximately 6 years and 3 months ago, a Bryson and his friends started an adventure. They made a list of ridiculous and abnormal things to do that summer including: making a ghetto billboard on the side of a road in the middle of the city, sleeping in the middle of a busy roundabout and not getting caught, and climbing to the top of a factory without falling to one’s death. (Divine Comedy does not encourage or endorse such behavior or activities)

One of the greatest feats was being the first world record holders for Largest Cardboard Fort, which Bryson and his friends built in one of their backyards. It was an all-day event starting at the break of dawn and finishing well into the middle of the night. Many of their friends thought they were crazy but when they saw what they had constructed, they were boggle-minded.“Only you guys,” was the comment they heard most and it was true. They would be the only ones to think of such a task and accomplish it. Though it took many hours of dumpster diving to collect all the cardboard and battling against the winds of the night to keep it from falling down, they did it. And it was awesome. They submitted the pictures and footage to some prestigious official folk on the World Wide Web and a few months later, they received a certificate saying they wereworld record holders.It was pretty legit.  


The original world record stood for a little over two years until Harvard University broke it. Universities all over the nation took up the challenge including BYU. BYU’s recycling department started making it a tradition every year to break the record and to build a giant cardboard fort in the middle of Brigham Square. It was cool to see what these four young scraps had started. Once Bryson and his friends were all back from their missions, they decided take back the title. How cool would it be if the original record setters came back out of nowhere! They teamed up with Youth Making a Difference and were able to get a space in the Sandy Expo Center (to avoid unpredictable weather conditions). 


     After 6 months of preparation and collecting cardboard boxes from every place imaginable and storing the cardboard under their beds, closets, cars and even renting out a storage unit, they were ready. However, something happened that caused quite the scare. Two weeks before the scheduled date of construction, BYU broke the record with 5,086 boxes.What if Bryson & Friends didn’t have enough boxes now? What if all this preparation was for nothing? But alas! They would not let such events deter them from their end goal. It took two full days to transport all the cardboard to the space, put together the boxes, and build the cardboard edifice. They were long and hard days, but they were full of great and fun memories. They opened the venue up to the public for all to see and gaze upon such a structure. It was such an amazing view and it was incredible that they had accomplished such a task.The original cardboard castle was 238 boxes, and they took back the title by destroying the previous 5,086 record with a 12,301 box fort that stood firmly and tall!Daaaaaaaang! I know right!? But like every cardboard structure, it could not stay up forever, so they destroyed it, with style! Running, driving, cardboard bazookas, you name it. They of course recycled all the boxes (because they love the earth) and they asked for donations from the local civilians to go towards building schools for orphans in India (because they love the children).

The life lesson learned from this crazy experience: If you can dream it, you can build it. Anything is possible if you just believe and if you have the courage to do it. In an interview with himself Bryson Frehner responded, “It was hard work preparing for our second cardboard fort, because we were all in the depth of busy lives with school, work, courting females and other extracurriculars. It was really easy pushing things off and procrastinating because it seemed like such a big impossible task that seemed too difficult to accomplish. But persistence and motivation paid off and not only were we able to take back our World Record (which we still hold to this day), but we were able to bless the lives of some orphans as well.”

“It was hard work preparing for our second cardboard fort, because we were all in the depth of busy lives with school, work, courting females and other extracurriculars. It was really easy pushing things off and procrastinating because it seemed like such a big impossible task that seemed too difficult to accomplish. But persistence and motivation paid off and not only were we able to take back our World Record (which we still hold to this day), but we were able to bless the lives of some orphans as well.”

     Nothing is too crazy. If you think of something and you want to do it, do it! Sure some people will criticize you or try to keep you from fulfilling your dreams and sure you might fail, but it’s worth the risk.You never know what the end result might be if you don’t try.

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