When the pirate flies the bright red dive flag during the week, those Williston Crossings RV Resort residents in the know mark their calendars.
"If it flies during the week, that means the war is on Saturday," said RVer Lee Lash who, along with his wife Nadine are in character with costumes she got while working at a Halloween store.
Their neighbors, Kathy and Tom Lynch, are geared up and ready, Kathy with her Harley Davidson helmet strapped on and her water shoes. And more neighbors such as Michel and Marcia Taylor have their water buckets ready. Michel says he was drafted by the French Army twice so he's ready for battle.
It's almost 2 p.m. on Saturday and the weapons and buckets are full of water. A dozen golf carts are filled with members of the 55-and-older crowd, and they are circling the frontline shooters, who are standing shoulder to shoulder aimed and ready.
"Paul has ice in his water," yells one soldier, and they know to expect a cold blast. The pirates swing around the corner while the other team advances and water is flying everywhere.
Even Craig and Kim Holland's 6-year-old border collie Dixie is part of the strategy.
Dixie heads over and gets the opposition to shoot water for her to drink. She drains their guns empty and allows the golf carts to circle around and unload streams, dousing their opponents who fall for the trick every time.
Visitor Ann Mennono is riding with her dad Steve Woolery and they are Team Wet Willies, according to their custom T-shirts.
"He texted me and said we are going to be in a water fight," said Mennono, who ordered the shirts just for the occasion.
Karen and Ed Harvey said they've been in the water war five times since last summer.
"We were doing it once a week when the pool was closed and we were bored," she said.
The wars were resident Pam Betzing's idea. She said she and her husband were sitting outside shooting squirrels with squirt guns to keep them out of the garden and another resident was passing by and thought they were aiming at her.
"She said, 'Game on'," recalled Betzing and it grew from there to officially be known as the Williston Water Wars.
Now dozens of residents and guests take part in the 45-minute-long event that brings a lot of laughs and soaks to everyone involved—and even spectators if they're not paying attention.
And when the fight is over, the players set down their Aqua Soakers and Stream Machines and gather by the picnic tables to catch up and drink a cold one.
Pirate Lee Nash said the water wars are a non-sanctioned event for the misfits of the island. His wife Nadine agrees, adding that, "We're getting better, and every time we add more people."