Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Take-Away from the Fight-A-Thon for TakeThis


The Fight-A-Thon
Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee
 
 
    When the members of our community come together for a common cause, the response is nothing short of astounding. Recently, we lost not only a player in our community, but a kind-hearted friend to many. Buddy Wolfhope, also known as Sir BrightHammer IceBreaker, Arg the Pirate, and Doctor Slashblight, was a well known and well respected player in our community, a Knight of the Eternal Flame, and a great friend. As a once new player to the game, Buddy was a welcoming, warm player that I looked up to for his role-playing, his fighting dedication, and his attire. My memories of my first few years of playing were speckled with Bud’s smiles, his winning attitude, and his contagious love of having fun. He was an endearing individual to his friends and acquaintances alike.
    When someone leaves us so abruptly and unexpectedly like Buddy did, often times we search for a way to express our appreciation for them in a way we could not when they were amongst us. On Sunday, July 3rd, 2016, we came together as a community to honor his memory and raise money and swords for a cause that was near and dear to Buddy’s heart: the TakeThis Foundation.
    The Fight-A-Thon was held at Tournaments of Blackwood, and all money raised was donated to TakeThis. The Fight-A-Thon was a 3-hour-long endurance battle against the heat and will power. Competitors continuously fought 1-on-1 fights, switching competitors between fights, where they were sponsored by generous members of the community, workplaces, and self-funding, paying per fight, per win, per loss, and a few other combinations. People fought cleanly and calmly for the full three hours, while others tallied wins and losses, and others kept competitors and their counters hydrated.
    The Fight-A-Thon was long and challenging, but it was done with so many people coming together, including the Event Runners, Competitors, Counters, On-the-field Helpers, and Donors, that the process went seamlessly and wonderfully. Below, I have interview some of the competitors to get their take on the Fight-A-Thon:

Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay

 
Player: Sean Finn
Character: Eamon Azzameen
What was it like to fight in the Fight-A-Thon?
Fighting in the fight-a-thon was hot, tiring, difficult yet also so very rewarding and just fun. Loved being able to fight with everyone and help to raise money for a good cause.
What was your most memorable fight?
I think my most memorable fight was in during the second half of the fight-a-thon, Tazia (Eren Pils-Martin) had just handed me some water and I saw Drike was looking for a fight, so I challenged him to an impromptu Corsican Mug fight. That was a lot of fun and I ended up winning that fight to boot.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
I would say that it both an immense amount of fun while at the same time being seriously challenging as well a wholly worth it.
If you raised money for the fight-a-thon, how much and from whom?
I got a $20 backing from the KOEF since I didn't have any sponsors ahead of time, I hadn't actually planned on fighting originally as I was mostly at Blackwood as staff, and I got an extra $2 donation from John Berrini for a somersault resulting in death, that was the only time I got a win on Shandar.
What were your wins, losses, and total number of fights?
As I hadn't initially planned on fighting and didn't have any sponsors ahead of time, I didn't keep track, instead I just did my best to make sure everyone was getting as many fights as humanly possible.

 

Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay
 
Player: Ray McGuirk Jr.
Character: Radstar Falcon
What was it like to fight in the Fight-A-Thon?
My experience of it was great. Like, always not only was it like the endurance thing at pressure point, but with an extra hour and all for charity.
What was your most memorable fight?
I didn't have any real memorable fights. I was just happy I made it through the 2 hours and 45 minutes that I could do.
If you raised money for the fight-a-thon, how much and from whom?
I made 200 from Nex Gen for my wins and from Pat Bobell (Saka) was giving me 25 cents a fight for some were around 150 something and with John Berrini (Jack) and the two things I won on his board I made like 360-362 for charity.
What were your wins, losses, and total number of fights?
My totals were 200 wins 432 losses 632 fights.


Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee

 
Player: Eric Marques
Character: Randalf
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon?
Very tiring, at least for someone that doesn't do CrossFit.
What was your most memorable fight?
Probably against Vawn with his crazy hat. I kinda just wanted to knock the hat off.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
I would do one once a month if it was available.


Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay

 
Player: James Murphy
Character: Tao Ya Kang
What was it like to fight in the Fight-A-Thon?
It was exhilarating, exhausting, and humbling
What was your most memorable fight?
Right after Shandar had beaten me, he had a 6’6” I had marn and stick. He told me why he was using the 6’6”. “It was what Bud always used.” Right after that I got one and used one for most of the rest of the time. At one point I grabbed a bunch of the npc 6’6”’s and announced a .25 per win sponsorship for the next 5 minutes. This resulted in 98 wins.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
It broke me, I was not able to stay in the fight the entire time. I would like to blame my hands but I ran out of gas. I had to sit for a bit, twice.
If you raised money for the fight-a-thon, how much and from whom?
Yes I raised money, $125 the Murphy family giving account was primary on the amount contributed
What were your wins, losses, and total number of fights?
Wins-223, Losses-267, Total-490
However, I was keeping track myself, I did not have any per/ sponsors, so my numbers were self-recorded and most likely very wrong.


Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay

 
Player: Danielle Guimont
Character: Elizah Reynolds
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon?
Fighting in the fight-a-thon was a lot of work (especially for this newbie.) It was exhausting, but also a new sort of exhilarating. I got to fight against some of the best fighters, got my ass kicked a lot but also came out with some wins and met new (to me) fighters who taught me tons of resourceful things.
What was your most memorable fight?
My personal most memorable fight would have to be any of the dwarf fights I had to do. Swoop was sponsored by Jon Landerfin (Zatarra) to win 15 dwarf fights, and since swoop got injured the day before I decided to champion him In a way and took on that challenge. The fights were pretty great, I only won 5 of them put I still got the donation.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
My first experience was amazing and I'd do it all again if offered the chance. I learned a lot, and lost a lot be I'll be back for more, Elizah still has tons of fight left in her.
What were your wins, losses, and total number of fights?
385 fights - 160 wins/225 losses  


Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee

 
Player: Keith Cronyn
Character: Saegan
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon?
It was fun. It was important. I had never heard of Take This before reading about it via the fight a thon, but it's an organization that is important to me now. I've worked in various parts of the mental health field for many years now. I've seen lives changed. I've known people that could use a little extra help from an organization like Take This. I think we all have. So for me, fighting in the fightathon was important. I was only looking for penny donations from people per fight, because I felt the idea of it was to show you're surrounded by people who would support you. It felt symbolic that way. When people were offering me more than a penny per fight, or win, I felt like I had to push forward to earn it. It drove me on. Nothing was going to stop me from making it through. Who knows what lives those pennies may change.
What was your most memorable fight?
There were too many fights to have a single most memorable one, for me. There was a series of fights that I won with my off hand because I'd lost an arm, and I just remember Trent yelling from the corner "that was a good run for just one arm". It felt like it had been too.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
When you have a cause to fight for, to champion, it's just easier to keep pushing forward. You might not think you could fight for a 3 hour block. You might surprise yourself too. I'd do it again, for sure.
 
Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee
 
Player: Greg Falconer
Character: Daekara
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon?
The fight-a-thon was some of the highest energy fighting I've ever been in, and by far some of the most fun. There was no caring who won or who lost it was just fighting for the joy of fighting. My most memorable fight was against Neil Tozier. First time I've ever fought against him and he was a lot faster than I expected.


Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee

 
Player: Tyler Main
Character: TMain
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon? What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
These are the same question, so they're getting the same answer. The fight-a-thon is a great way to experience what realms combat should be at its most basic. Clean, honorable, and conducted with excellent attitudes and sportsmanship. No wasted time sitting around in between fights, no half hour talking about it. Just good, clean fights, until we're done for the day or you're too tired to fight anymore. Add in that it's a good cause, and it is something I HIGHLY recommend to all players
What was your most memorable fight? Dave Hayden’s hat, followed by my spear fights. Spear is not an easy combination to make work at the best of times... and is probably the most physically demanding style. My shoulder did not appreciate those fights.
If you raised money for the fight-a-thon, how much and from whom?
30 dollars out of my own pocket. I'll be finding sponsors next year.


Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee

 
Player: Michael Durocher
Character: Vuel
What was it like to fight in the fight a thon?
It was a unique experience that can't be replicated. There's a level of dedication I saw on the field from everyone that you normally don't see at events. People put themselves out there and pushed themselves to new levels that I haven't seen a lot of the combatants who were out there reach before. There wasn't a single, “I have to stop now attitude,” but rather everyone had the same presentation of, "Let's do this and we're not stopping until they tell us to.” People put themselves out there and they paid for every fight with a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. I don't have a single memorable fight but rather the experience as a whole was memorable. It's one of those moments you have in this game that stays with you. It made me proud to be part of it and this community.



Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay

Player: Josh Learned
Character: Shandar
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon?
It was a great experience. Everyone seemed to be extremely excited and pumped to participate. Almost losing a close friend who struggles with mental health issues and helping them work through I learned the importance of organizations like Takethis and having an outlet in general. It’s something I’ve learned is a lot more important recently and I’m glad I was able to do something to help. Everyone seemed to understand they were participating in something bigger than just some fights, and respected it as such. And it did feel bigger than any tournament that I can remember recently because the goal was different. It wasn't about winning or losing, the goal was different for everyone. You not only wanted to complete your own sponsor goals, you wanted to make sure everyone else got there’s. And you saw people fatigue, fighting lefty cause their right arm was dead, but not giving up. The attitudes were great. People got tired and shots were off the mark, face, groin, little hard at times. But everyone understood why and kept going without any issues. It was an a special moment to be a part of.
What was your most memorable fight?
Early on the first time I turned, saw and fought Eris. Being able to participate in something like that, while at the same time spreading the fun of the game and fighting with my daughter was and will always be a highlight experience. And I think her being so young but getting excited and having fun is something that would've made Bud happy.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
I covered this a little at the start, so I’ll skip some. It felt faster than 3 hours. It takes a lot of people to make something like this happen. My participation is one of the smallest parts. I showed up at an arranged time and date and did something I do all the time. I love to fight, so this was great for me. The real people who deserve praise are the sponsors. No matter how big or small. The guys who gave up the funds to make the donation we'll submit possible. My fights, wins or losses, won’t help anyone in the end. The donations they are giving will be put to good use helping those who desperately need it. I’m glad I helped give them a reason to donate, but they truly are the heros here. So, thank you to everyone who donated any amount.
If you raised money for the fight-a-thon, how much and from whom?
Thank you to my Sponsors who were Kyle B./Kaz, Andy W./Nymbus, Jon L./Zatara and Jon J./Trent
My total was $1,120.
What were your wins, losses, and total number of fights?
1273 Fights 1104 Wins 169 Losses
 
Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay

Player: Dave Hayden
Character: Vawn Coupant
What was it like to fight in the fight-a-thon?
Exhausting and exhilarating.
What was your most memorable fight?
I'm not sure I can call any one fight most memorable as they're kind of blurred together, but right around when they called 15 minutes left I was able to rally a bit and had a short string of wins I was pleased with.
What would you like to say about your experience in the fight-a-thon?
I drove up to Creathorne on Sunday unsure of what the turnout would be. It was promising to see so many take the field at the start. It was inspiring to see how many just kept going, and how other people stepped in when someone had to hydrate or rest or just to give us some different faces to fight. It was downright unreal the way everyone hung in there as we got toward the end, the way people dug deeper even the closer we got, although I think everyone had blown away their goals by then. And the response from the community this week as the pledge totals have rolled in has just been amazing.
If you raised money for the fight-a-thon, how much and from whom?
My total was $600, and it came from non-Realmsie gamer friends who thought it was a great cause and that we were all nuts for fighting in the hot summer sun for 3 hours and from my company's charity matching.
What were your wins, losses, and total number of fights?
810 fights, 327 wins
 
Jack's Board - Photo courtesy of Janna Oakfellow-Pushee

 
After the three hours was up, the competitors cleared the field and what they had done made a difference. Whether being sponsored or not, everyone fought toward a common cause. At the end of the day, there was approximately 11,694 fights, give or take. The amount of money raised by pledges and donated to the TakeThis Foundation was $5,502.41. On behalf of our community, let me say thank you to everyone who contributed to this event. You all did an amazing job.
 
The smallest competitor.  Photo courtesy of Casey Lemay
 



Editor’s note: If you haven’t gotten to contribute and would still like to, the KoEF will be throwing an event on October 8th called In Bud's Honor: A Fundraiser for TakeThis, Inc. All earnings will be donated to TakeThis, Inc. Hope to see you all then!

 
Click here to read up on TakeThis

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