The 4,488 players of the world record dodgeball game
The 4,488 players celebrate on-field Wednesday afternoon after helping UCI regain the world record for the largest dodgeball game. Michelle S. Kim / University Communications

It’s official: UC Irvine can once again claim the Guinness world record for the largest dodgeball game. It all went down Wednesday afternoon in the Anteater Recreation Center fields, where 4,488 blue- and gold-clad students lined up for their shot at making history.

Criminology, law & society freshman Yvette Montano said it was a memorable exercise in building community and school spirit among students.

“Not a lot of people can say they took part in a world record-breaking event,” she said, sporting a temporary tattoo of the UCI logo and blue and gold stripes across her face. “I met so many people today, and I feel a lot closer to my fellow students.”

The day had the feeling of a homecoming rally, as student group representatives lined up along the field to sell hot dogs and drinks and raise awareness of their organizations. Peter the Anteater showed up for the fun too, along with officials from the World Dodgeball Society and Guinness World Records.

The campus support overwhelmed Jun Wang, vice president of student services for Associated Students of UCI and one of the event organizers.

“It was a great turnout and exceeded our expectations,” he said. “We were planning big, but the outcome was a lot bigger, which was just awesome.”

A Guinness adjudicator was on hand to confirm the number of players for world-record certification, counting players as they made their way to the ARC fields and subtracting those who departed early.

Anteaters can check the Guinness World Records website next week to see UCI’s official entry.

A year ago, the campus rallied 1,745 participants to break the world record for the largest dodgeball game, then held by Canada’s University of Alberta. The record changed hands several times since then and until today was claimed by New York’s Rochester Institute of Technology, which mobilized 2,136 participants in May.

The match is one of many activities scheduled for UCI’s Welcome Week, during which more than 6,000 freshmen and transfer students will join the campus community.