Bulletin for the Week of April 8, 2019


Here is this week's schedule. Note-slight change in start times for some days, plus final Middlebury Level 3 make up class (which I forgot to mention last week). Sending this out early (Sunday instead of Monday) so you all see this in time.

Monday 4/8, 7-9:30 pm (note late start): Final make up from winter Level 3 class (because we had so many cancellations we couldn't fit them all in before the break). This is an evening of bouting games, and will definitely be more fun with more people. I invite everyone that has their own equipment including electric, Charlotte as well as Middlebury fencers, to come for this (this includes folks who will be moving up to Level 3 in the fall!). I am especially hoping to see a foil contingent there so I can get in a little practice before my Veteran NAC this coming weekend.

Tuesday 4/9, 7 pm (note late start), back half of MPR (our usual gym is known as the Multi Purpose Room), Level 1/2 classes will start as voting booths are being cleaned up in the other half. Once the full room is available (best guess, some time between 7:30 and 8), Competitive Squad fencers are welcome to set up electric strips for open fencing.

Wednesday 4/10, 6:30-9 pm Usual Middlebury Level 1/2 class and open fencing time

After class this week, we will play the Drawbridge Game, a fun game that begins to introduce our newbies to bouting. I encourage all Level 1 and 2 students to stay after class and play for a while!

If you owe money for spring classes or dues and did not pay last week, please remember to bring payment in this week.

Please bring a water bottle to every practice, so you can stay hydrated and don't need to interrupt class to go out to the water fountain. Please do not wear shorts for fencing even when the weather warms up.

Private lessons are a great way to get personalized attention and improve your fencing, whether you are preparing for competition or just trying to build skills. Lessons are available with both Geoff Butler and myself, and cost $20 for about 20 minutes (which doesn't sound long, but a good lesson is intensive). I am offering lessons on limited dates this spring, all Tuesdays, all at Charlotte Congregational Church from 4:30-6 p.m. In order to offer lessons on a particular date, I need at least two students signed up to make renting the space worthwhile. To see what dates are available and to sign up for lessons, please use this website: https://visibook.com/vfafencinglessons (first one is next week, 4/16). Geoff is offering lessons in Vergennes on Friday evenings. I notice that he has not updated his Visibook page to allow sign ups for these, so contact him directly at coachgeoffbutler@gmail.com. Did you win a free lesson at the Middlebury Open raffle? Now is a good time to schedule it!.

I am moving forward with planning the 5th annual Summer Clinic in Middlebury.

When: July 26-28, 7-9 pm Friday, 9 am-9 pm Saturday (includes an afternoon swim and dinner break), 9 am-3 pm Sunday
Where: Mary Hogan School, Middlebury

Coaches: Viveka Fox, Geoff Butler and at least one guest coach (possibly two if numbers warrant it). I have a tentative agreement with Maitre Gilbert Gelinas, the dynamic, energetic and highly experienced head coach of Les Seigneurs de la Rive Nord in Montreal (just waiting for him to confirm his availability). I have worked with Gilbert before at a camp I ran for several years some time ago, and I am really excited about getting him down here.

Fencers: Lots of you, I hope! I began offering this clinic so that VFA fencers could experience a fencing camp without the high prices and long distance travel most of them require. This camp is open to all teen and adult foil and epee fencers who have completed at least the Level 1 course (that will be all of you, by June). In addition, 11-12 year olds with 2+ seasons of training and some competitive experience may attend. No children younger than 11. The camp is held over a weekend to make it possible for more adult fencers to participate. Whether you are tuning up for the new tournament season, preparing to move up to the next level VFA classes, or just want a fun weekend of fencing and skill improvement, this clinic is for you.

Activities: 3 group training sessions, 1 private lesson per student, 2 evenings of open fencing (all electric, loaner equipment available), 2 lunch time discussion groups, 1 informal competition, and some fun social time (pool! fro-yo!).

Cost: $150 per person if 20-28 fencers attend, $125 per person if we get 28-40 (maximum is 20 per weapon).

How to register:
1. Go to https://askfred.net/Clinics/whoIsComing.php?clinic_id=43299 and add your name to the list if you are not already on it. This gives me an idea of who is interested and lets me email all of you if I need to.
New to using AskFRED? Find directions here: http://www.vtfencingalliance.org/old_posts/HowToUseFRED.htm
2. Ask me to email you a paper registration form. Fill in the form and return it to me at practice or by mail, along with your $100 nonrefundable deposit, by June 3.
3. Important NOTE: the clinic will be cancelled if I do not receive at least 20 deposits by June 3. Simply putting your name on the AskFRED list is not enough, you must turn in your deposit so that I know I have the funds to offer this. And hey, if you know you want to come, how about getting your deposit to me sooner rather than later (no need to wait until June 2, folks - the sooner I get the 20th deposit, the sooner I can firm up all the plans).

Is a fun one (well, they all are, but this one is unique).
Saturday, April 13, Sharon Academy, Sharon VT
10 a.m. Foil-Epee Doubles. A unique GMD tradition! Team up with another fencer-one foil fencer and one epee fencer per team. Fence a series of 10-touch relays with other teams, with a coin toss to decide whether the foilists or the epeeists fence first. Open to all fencers born 2005 or earlier (i.e. teens and adults). We use a unique fence-for-all-places format (a.k.a. the Shark Pool system) that uses the first round of pools to sort the teams, then forms pools by tiers (top teams in the Shark Pool, with middle and lower tier pools), so that less experienced or less successful teams get to enjoy fencing eachother in the second round without the sharks. Entry fee is $25 per team if registered by midnight April 8, $45 per team after that, with a discount of $5 per team if your partner is your parent, child, sibling or spouse.

12:30 pm (more or less...afternoon events will start as the Doubles wraps up) D-Under Foil
1 p.m D-under Epee
1:30 p.m D-under Saber

D-Under events are limited to D, E and Unrated fencers (and I really encourage E and Unrated fencers to participate). Please do not sign up for more than 2 weapons (and I strongly urge you to seriously consider fencing just one weapon unless you are in fantastic shape, as the events will overlap and you will have to run from one to the other with no break). If you recently joined the USFA and want to get the most from your membership this season, come out and play! If you are a noncompetitive member, this would be a great time to upgrade to competitive status, as upgrades made in the spring are good for all of next season. This event is open to fencers born 2005 or before.

Entry fee for individual events if registered by midnight April 8: $15 for 1 weapon/$20 for 2 (or, if also fencing in the Doubles, $5 per weapon). Late registration: $20 for 1 weapon/$30 for 2. Sign up now and save money!

More information and to register: https://askfred.net/Events/whoIsComing.php?tournament_id=42750
When you click on "preregister" you can sign up for unrated events in the usual way. You will also see a small blue link that says "Looking for team events?". Click on that to enter your team. It will give you space to fill in 4 team members. Just leave the last 2 blank.

Note: I will be out of town and miss this tournament. That means all competitors must own their own jacket, mask, glove and underarm protector. However, I will send club electric equipment, so you do not need to own your own electric gear.