Bulletin for the Week of January 28, 2019


Fingers crossed for a normal schedule this week, with no weather interruptions! 6:30-9 Monday and Wednesday at Mary Hogan School, 6:30-9 Tuesday and 7-9:30 Thursday at Charlotte Central School.

Note that there are some schedule changes coming up in February.
Week of Feb 4-7 should be normal, barring weather problems
Feb 11 and 12: Level 1/2 classes as normal
Feb 13 and 14: No fencing, no Level 3 classes, I am in Denver for Jr Olympics

Mon Feb 18: Level 1/2 class at Bridge School, with guest coach Geoff Butler plus the usual crew of teaching assistants. Open fencing for Squaddies, but no organized CS practice (run your own, you know how!)
Tues Feb 19: Level 1/2 class at CCS, with guest coach Geoff Butler plus the usual crew of teaching assistants. Open fencing for Squaddies, but no organized CS practice (run your own, you know how!)
Wed Feb 20: Level 3 class at Bridge School (I will be back)
Thurs Feb 21: Level 3 at CCS, as usual

Mon Feb 25 and Wed Feb 27: Middlebury Monday (Level 1/2, CS) and Wednesday (Level 3) practices as normal, at Mary Hogan School
Tues Feb 26 and Thurs Feb 28: Charlotte group will meet at Shelburne Town gym (CCS is closed for winter break), 7-9 p.m both days (Level 1/2 on Tuesday, Level 3 on Thursday, as usual).
Tuesday March 5: No fencing, both CCS and Shelburne locations are in use for town meetings. This date will be made up at the end of the month.

Sponsorship goal: at least $2500 (This is actually a little less than last year's actual amount. More would be better. Club record is $3230)
Amount turned in so far: $650
Deadline for getting sponsor names on tournament t-shirt: This Friday! (Feb. 1) While I am happy to accept money at any time from anyone, the t shirt listing is a really nice way to acknowledge business sponsors in particular, as it gives more and longer lasting visibility than the printed program ad. So, if you plan to approach potential business sponsors, please don't procrastinate.
Have more money than time? Feel uncomfortable approaching others for money? You can BE a sponsor instead of (or in addition to) getting outside sponsors. Many of our sponsors are individuals or families (so it won't look weird to have your name on the t shirt, you won't be the only one who isn't a business. You can also give anonymously).

Raffle: We need donated prizes! Gift certificates, gift baskets (want to put together a basket of Vermont products, or something like that?), handcrafts, fencing-specific prizes, or any items in excellent condition that anyone would want (re-gift those unwanted holiday gifts!). Grand prize tba soon (usually we pick some kind of electronic gadget with broad appeal). Donated prizes can be turned in to me, or to raffle czarina Karen Cutler. Here is a link to print out raffle tickets:
Raffle Tickets
There are 12 per page, cut them up and sell them to anyone and everyone (including yourself). Tickets are $1 each, or 6 for $5, checks payable to VFA or cash please. Can't get someone to sponsor the tournament for $25? I bet you can get 25 people to buy $1 tickets. Having trouble downloading the tickets? Let me know, I can email them to you. Winners need not be present at the March 3 drawing - we will get prizes to them. Raffle tickets and money can be turned in to me or to Karen any time before the drawing.

Remember, anyone who raises $50 or more before March 2 (in sponsorships and/or raffle ticket sales) gets free entry fees to the Middlebury Open. The person with the most sponsors (at any level) gets 12 free raffle tickets.

2019 Ground Hog Open, Sunday Feb. 3
Location: Indoor Track, Patrick Gym, UVM (note: not tennis courts. track is on opposite side of building)
Event schedule:
9 a.m Open (senior mixed) Foil
9 a.m E-Under Epee
12 pm Open Saber
1:30 pm E-Under Foil
2 pm Open (senior mixed) Epee

All events are open to fencers born 2005 or earlier, and all require competitive USFA membership. If you are currently a noncompetitive member and want to participate, you will need to go to usfencing.org and upgrade this week. The upgrade costs $65 and is good through July 31. If you are having trouble logging in to the website, you can upgrade over the phone (many people find this the easier route) by calling 719.866.4511 (note, the office is in Colorado, 2 hour time difference).

All about E-Under events (pay attention newbies!):
These events are open to unrated and E rated fencers only. We offer these events to give our beginning to intermediate level competitors the opportunity to fence eachother, without having to face higher-rated opponents. Experienced fencers will ref your bouts, and help you learn about how tournaments work if this is your first time. Club foil and epee equipment (including electric) is available to everyone who doesn't have their own. For first time competitors, and E-under event is a great place to get started in a supportive environment. For more seasoned (or particularly talented) competitors, it can be a great opportunity to try to earn the bottom two ratings. In an event with 15+ competitors including at least 4 Es, the winner earns a D rating, and 2nd and the two 3rd place fencers earn E ratings. I am happy to say that as of today, there are 16 fencers already signed up for E-Under Epee, including 8 Es (but the more the merrier!). Thus far, for E-Under Foil, we have 10 fencers signed up, including 2 Es. So if you are an E or unrated foil fencer, you can be a hero by signing up and moving us closer to the goal. If we do not reach the 15 competitors/4 Es mark, it will still be a fun event, and the winner earns (or re-earns) an E. Putting on an E event is a lot of work (compared to open events, which more or less run themselves). Experienced fencers such as myself volunteer time to ref your bouts, and to maintain and schlep club equipment for you to borrow free of charge. We do this because it is an investment in the future of our club and division (pay it forward some day, please!). Best way to thank us? Sign up and show up! Never competed before and have questions? Ask me.

Tournament entry fees:
If registered by Tuesday night: $15 for your first event, plus $5 per additional event
If registered after Tuesday: $20 for your first event, plus $10 per additional event

Early registration not only saves you a few bucks, but it is super helpful to the tournament organizers in planning the day. So do your fellow fencers a favor and sign up early.

Please do not sign up for two events that start within 30 minutes of eachother.

To register and for more informations:

New to using AskFRED? Directions are here: