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News

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  • 2 Sep 2021 6:57 AM | Anonymous

    Launching Monthly Memberships

    Back in March 2020, we had announced that we would be moving to a monthly membership. We're excited to now launch our Bronze/Silver/Gold memberships, using a new and improved booking website.

    Memberships will renew monthly, and each month you will receive credits (5 at Bronze, 10 at Silver, and 15 at Gold) to use to register for classes, workshops, and other events. You can take the same class at the same time every week, or adjust to fit your own availability - and if you have to miss a class, you can cancel and get your credit back. You can use your credits to bring a friend or family member along too. Credits are valid for two months, you can cancel your membership at any time, and we are continuing to offer sliding scale rates for all three levels.

    Our new model is more flexible for you and for us. The new booking system lets us do a lot more than our current system, and we will be transitioning fully over to new website with this system in September. The new booking and membership system also makes it easy for us to deal with any shutdowns or restrictions that may come this fall. 

    Fall Classes

    Note, there's no classes on the Labour Day long weekend.

    Our fall classes start Tuesday September 7th. We're offering the following indoor classes this fall:

    • Novice Longsword - our basic curriculum and where new fencers should start (typically students spend 3 months in novice before moving up).
    • Core Swordplay - our full curriculum, centered around the longsword but also including all of the weapons we teach. 

    We're also continuing our Saturday morning outdoor longsword classes at Andrew Haydon Park. We're adding the option of paired drills to this class, for a better swordplay experience.

    In September, we'll also be offering two Fight Nights - one that will be a workshop with competitive games to build up to full freeplay, and one that will be our typical open floor night for sparring. 

    Check out the Fall 2021 Registration page for all the details and to sign up. You will need to sign up for one of the new memberships first. If you try to sign up and something goes wrong, let us know! We're still ironing out a few wrinkles. 

    August Sale Ends Wednesday

    Our summer sale is coming to a close this Tuesday, August 31st. If you'd like to get a new or used fencing mask at a 40% discount, now's the time to buy! You can pick it up in store during a class, or select porch drop-off to having it delivered to your home on Wednesday. Not sure what size to get? Select your best guess, come in to try it on, and we'll make sure you go home with the right fit. 

    As part of our new website, we'll be moving to a new online store soon. As a result, our current store will be closing for a few days at the beginning of September. We'll let you know when the new shop is up and running. 

  • 28 Jul 2021 3:32 PM | Anonymous

    Indoor Paired Longsword Classes Start in August

    We're excited to announce that starting in August, we will be offering indoor longsword classes at the Sword Hall including paired drills and competitive exercises. These classes will be a drop-in style, so register for each class you would like to attend. We will be offering these classes weekly on Tuesdays at 7 pm and Saturdays at 11 am, starting August 7th. Registration is open now

    To participate in these indoor classes, you must show proof of vaccination. Please read and review our updated Covid-19 Safety Plan and Vaccine policy before registering. You will also need a fencing mask for these classes - so we're offering a 40% discount on new or used masks sold in August. If you're not sure what size to get, we recommend selecting your best guess and picking it up in person at the Sword Hall during a class so we can confirm the fit for you.

    If you haven't been able to get vaccinated yet, we hope you will join us for our outdoor classes or online youth classes. See all the details below.  

    Win Tickets to see THE GREEN KNIGHT

    We're giving away three pairs of tickets to see THE GREEN KNIGHT at Cineplex Theatres! Check out the fantastical trailer here. We'll be drawing one winner each on July 30th, August 6th, and August 13th. We're so excited for this film and can't wait to see it, so we're excited to offer this giveaway. If you don't win the first draw, your name stays in for the rest!

    To enter the draw, fill out our survey. You can get up to three more entries by subscribing to the Ottawa Swordplay YouTube channel, commenting on our giveaway announcement video, and sharing the video on your favourite social media with the hashtags #TheGreenKnight and #OttawaSwordplay and tagging a friend!

    In theatres Friday, July 30th THE GREEN KNIGHT, stars Dev Patel, Alicia Vikander, and Joel Edgerton. Directed by David Lowery, the film brings this epic fantasy Arthurian legend to life. Based on the 14th-century poem “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, Dev Patel’s character Gawain encounters ghosts, giants, and schemers in his daring pursuit of a green-skinned stranger, the Green Knight. 

    Outdoor Classes, Online Classes, and the Hauptmann's Birthday

    In August, we're continuing to offer our outdoor solo drill classes. Longsword will continue at Andrew Haydon Park on Saturdays at 11 am, and Weapon of the Week will continue at Britannia Park on Thursdays at 7 pm. Registration is open now! Note - there will be no classes on July 31st due to the long weekend. 

    The next Weapon of the Week class topics are:

    • July 29: Sword and buckler
    • August 5: Rapier
    • August 12: Dagger
    • August 19: Spear
    • August 26: Grossemesser (sword in one hand)

    If you're interested in trying one of these classes but don't have the specific weapon we're working with, let us know and we can bring you a loaner. We're hoping for great weather in August, but as always, if rain, thunderstorm, or extreme heat make an outdoor class unwise, we will cancel the event at least one hour before the start time, and credit your account with the registration fee. 

    With the launch of indoor classes, we've decided to end our online livestream drill class on Saturdays via the Discord server. We still have some great online content though - we will continue to post a new YouTube video each week, and we are offering a virtual version of our Young Knights and Warrior Princesses on Thursdays at 10 am through the Ottawa Public Library's Summerland activities. Visit  Ottawa Public Library for more information and to register. If you know someone that would love to join in, please spread the word! 

    And finally, with restrictions continuing to relax, we've decided to postpone Craig's birthday event until the fall so that we can run it in person with spectators. We're still looking for ideas of medieval combat situations for Craig to face, so please keep adding your ideas to the survey. We'll share an announcement when we have selected a new date.

  • 14 Jul 2021 9:15 AM | Anonymous

    Outdoor Classes

    Registration is now available for our July drop-in, outdoor classes: Weapon of the Week on Thursdays at 7 pm in Britannia Park, and Solo Longsword on Saturdays at 11 am in Andrew Haydon Park. Sign up today!

    As you might expect, Weapon of the Week switches up the topic each week. This month we have classes on Rapier, then Dagger, and finally Mordaxe. If you don't own one of the weapons, let us know - we often have loaners available!

    With Ontario moving to Stage 3 of reopening, we have increased the maximum number of students to 12 for our outdoor classes. We will continue with outdoor classes throughout July, and we hope to add more classes in August. We are currently reviewing the restrictions to determine what indoor options we can offer. 

    Note, there is no outdoor longsword class on July 31 due to the long weekend.

    Virtual Youth Classes via the Ottawa Public Library

    This summer, we are very pleased to be offering a virtual version of our Young Knights and Warrior Princesses through the Ottawa Public Library's Summerland activities. This half-hour virtual drop in program runs Thursdays at 10 am from July 8th through August 19th. Aimed at ages 7 to 12, this class will get kids moving with stretches, footwork, and games, and learn techniques for using the longsword, dagger, spear, and other medieval weapons. Plus, each half hour session includes a short lesson about the history of knights and nobles, how they trained to fight and the kinds of weapons and armor they used.

    Visit Ottawa Public Library to register for the sessions. If you know a kid that would love to join in, please spread the word! 

    Happy Birthday Craig!

    It's Craig's birthday this month, and to celebrate he wants to face 52 medieval combat situations and defeat them. Check out this video for all the details. 

    Got an idea for Craig to face? Fill out the survey to submit an idea, and then sign up to watch the livestream on July 24th, starting at 1 pm. 

    We'll also share recordings of the beatdown throughout August on our Youtube Channel. 

  • 10 Jun 2021 6:24 PM | Anonymous

    Outdoor Classes Start June 17

    Under Stage 1 of Ontario's Roadmap to Reopen, outdoor fitness classes of up to 10 people are allowed to operate. We are launching two weekly outdoor classes: Weapon of the Week on Thursdays at 7 pm in Brittania Park, and Solo Longsword on Saturdays at 11 am in Andrew Haydon Park.

    Like last summer and fall, these classes will be solo practice of techniques, actions, and footwork, and all students and instructors will maintain social distancing.  It will be a "drop in" style, so pay per class, at the same rates as before ($25 standard, $40 generous, $10 subsidized (all plus tax)). 

    Registration is available now for classes from June 17 through July 8. We will add more weekly classes based on demand and based on Ontario's reopening progress. 

    Renovations Continue!

    Under the current plans for reopening in Ontario, it looks like indoor classes will have to wait a while, but hopefully we can welcome you back into the hall by the fall. Here's a video tour of the renovations to tide you over.

    We are continuing to post new videos on YouTube and our livestream classes, held at 1 pm on Saturdays via Discord are ongoing. If you've attended any of our drop-in classes, or if you have signed up as an online swordplay member, you have access to our private Discord Server. Check your email for an invitation. If you're not an online member yet, you can sign up at OttawaSwordplay.com. It's a great way to support us and to keep practicing from home.

    Take Care and Be Safe

    All the instructors at Ottawa Swordplay are happy to share that they have received their first vaccine doses, and we encourage you to get vaccinated as soon as you're able. The sooner we are all protected, the sooner we can get back to stabbing each other!

  • 13 Apr 2021 9:00 PM | Anonymous

    Ontario Lockdown Update

    While we had hoped to start up our outdoor classes this month, under the current restrictions in Ontario we are not able to offer in-person classes, outdoors or indoors. As soon as we can offer classes we will post an announcement on our website and send an email update.  

    We are continuing to post new videos on YouTube and our livestream classes, held at 1 pm on Saturdays via Discord are ongoing. If you've attended any of our drop-in classes, or if you have signed up as an online swordplay member, you have access to our private Discord Server. Check your email for an invitation. If you're not an online member yet, you can sign up at OttawaSwordplay.com. It's a great way to support us and to keep practicing from home.  

    Renovations Continue!

    We've made great progress on the swordhall! You'll hardly recognize it the next time you visit. Here's a video sneak peek at the renovations as of March 27th. We've also now installed a new floor over the old sprung floor as you can see in the photo above. It's wonderful to walk on, and we think it's going to make for a fantastic training and fighting space. We can't wait to welcome you into the hall again soon. Until then, wear your mask and take care!

  • 19 Feb 2021 9:00 PM | Anonymous

    Here's what's coming up at Ottawa Swordplay:

    • Renovations Continue!
    • Online Classes
    • Winter Sale Exchanges

    Painting and Drywall and Flooring, oh my!

    The significant renovations we began in January are continuing. Check out the great photos below! The old gear storage room is gone, replaced by more floor space for fencing. We're redesigning the way loaner gear is stored, and making it easier to access the bathroom. And the whole place is getting a new coat of paint!

    We're making steady progress, but the work is ongoing, so we are not resuming in-person classes yet. We expect the work to continue throughout February and possibly into March. We'll keep you updated on when in-person classes will return - both indoor and outdoor.

         

    Online Classes and YouTube

    Our latest video series explores the four main guards of our system. You can watch the video on The Tower right now, and the next ones will be released on Tuesdays over the coming weeks. On Thursdays, the recording of our livestream class from the previous weekend also goes up on Youtube.

    Our livestream classes, held at 1 pm on Saturdays via Discord are ongoing. If you've attended any of our drop-in classes, or if you have signed up as an online swordplay member, you have access to our private Discord Server. Check your email for an invitation. If you're not an online member yet, you can sign up at OttawaSwordplay.com. It's a great way to support us and to keep practicing from home.

    Exchanges from Winter Sale

    Need to exchange the shirt or mask you bought during our winter sale for a different size? Please send us an email to arrange an appointment. We will be happy to help you but must plan around our ongoing renovations. Thank you for understanding!


  • 5 Jan 2021 6:00 PM | Anonymous

    January Public Health Order

    In compliance with the latest Public Health orders, we are closed to the public and will not be offering indoor classes during the province-wide shutdown. We are also not offering in-store shopping or curbside pick up during the shutdown, but our online store remains open for local delivery.

    We'll have new YouTube videos up soon, and our livestream classes via Discord will resume on Saturday, January 9th at 1 pm. If you've attended any of our drop-in classes, or if you have signed up as an online swordplay member, you have access to our private Discord Server. Check your email for an invitation. If you're not an online member yet, you can sign up at OttawaSwordplay.com. It's a great way to support us during the shutdown. 

    Status of Ottawa Swordplay

    To put it lightly, 2020 was an unpredictable and uncertain year. We know many local businesses that have had to close and that many of you are probably wondering about the future of Ottawa Swordplay.

    We are extremely lucky to be able to say with confidence that will be here for years to come. We want to thank you for all your support so far, and we are also thankful for the relief programs from the Federal and Provincial governments and the flexibility of our landlord.

    Renovations Underway

    Given the recent province-wide shutdown, we are taking this opportunity to do some significant renovations at the swordhall. We are excited to create a better space than ever before for when we are able to re-open! We hope most of the work will be complete by the end of January and the end of the province-wide shutdown, but some of the work may continue into February or possibly into March. We'll keep you updated on what that means for in-person classes.

    As always, your safety is our most important priority, and we will continue to offer modified and online activities. We look forward to widespread vaccination and a return to our regular activities at some point in 2021. 

    Returns or Exchanges from Winter Sale

    Should you have any items you need to return or exchange, please hold on to them until the provincial shutdown ends. We will be happy to help you once we can re-open to the public. If you have any questions or concerns at all, don't hesitate to send us an email.  

    Shop Now


  • 30 Nov 2020 10:30 AM | Anonymous

    End of Year Sale On Now!

    Looking for a book, shirt, mask, or sword for yourself or a fencer in your life? Check out the latest updates to our online store! From now until December 21st, every single purchase comes with a free Ottawa Swordplay/Points North mug. Whether you buy a new sword, a book, a shirt, or even just a mug - you get a mug added in for free!

    Did our latest video on dagger basics get you itching for some dagger practice? Buy a new fencing mask and we'll throw in a synthetic rondel dagger for free, or pick up our shirt and dagger bundle for just $45! Dagger is great for indoor training - no risk to your ceilings!

    As we've been doing for the past several months, we offer free porch delivery in the Ottawa area. Porch drop offs will be done on Tuesday evenings for all purchases made by the preceding Monday. For December, we are also adding in-store pick up hours from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm on Saturday December 5th, 12th, and 19th. In-store pick up is great if you want to hold a sword or try on a mask before you buy. 

    Got any questions about any of our sale items or delivery options? Send us an email.  


    Click Here to Shop Now

    No Indoor Classes in December

    Ottawa Swordplay has typically closed for a few weeks in December over the holidays, and this year we've decided to close our indoor classes for the whole month. This has been a very challenging year for us, and this pause will allow our instructors some time to rest and recuperate before the new year. It will also allow us to make some further adjustments and changes to the swordhall to prepare for classes this winter, like improving our training pells. 

    Our online content will continue, and we hope you will join us for our Digital December! We've got new Novice series videos and more dagger videos coming to the YouTube channel on Tuesdays this month. We're slowly inching towards 1000 subscribers, and if we hit that milestone we unlock a ton of features for our channel, so if you haven't subscribed yet, please do!

    If you are an online member, or if you have attended a drop-in class, you have access to our Ottawa Swordplay Discord Server. Check your email for your latest Digital Perks! Craig leads a half-hour livestream solo longsword class on Saturdays at 1 pm via Discord. The recording is posted to our YouTube channel the following Thursday. These livestream classes will continue for December, with classes planned for December 5th, 12th, and 19th. There will be no livestream on the 26th, but it will return in January.

    From all of us here at Ottawa Swordplay, we wish you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday season. We can't thank you enough for all your support this year. Take care, be safe, and keep practicing!

  • 4 Nov 2020 9:36 PM | Anonymous

    Indoor classes are back as of Tuesday, November 10th!

    The schedule is the same as before the shutdown, with two small changes. First, if you and someone from your household would like to sign up for the same class, you will now be allowed to do paired drills together. Second, we've replaced our Saturday classes with a single Longsword Solo Drill class. While targeted at intermediate students, novice students are welcome to join in! 

    Indoor at the Swordhall:

    • Tuesdays at 7 pm: Longsword Solo Drill
    • Wednesdays at 7 pm: No Contact Novice Longsword
    • Thursdays at 7 pm: Rapier Solo Drill
    • Saturdays at 11:30 am: Longsword Solo Drill 

    Outdoor Classes Continue

    While the weather permits, our Saturday outdoor classes continue! Join us for the great weather this weekend in the west end or east end.

    Updates to Covid-19 Precautions

    Following the latest advice from Ontario, we have adjusted the student training rings in the Sword Hall so that each fencer is 3 metres apart. We continue to require non-medical (cloth) masks to be worn for all indoor classes, and we will continue to regularly sanitize high-touch surfaces and shared equipment. To minimize contact, we're also asking students to avoid arriving too early or lingering too long after class.

    Your safety is always our top priority. If you are feeling ill, stay home, and we will gladly switch your registration to another class once you are well. If you have any questions or concerns, please let us know

  • 12 Oct 2020 7:18 PM | Anonymous

    In accordance with the latest restrictions announced on October 9th for Ottawa, we have cancelled all indoor classes for at least the next 28 days. We will continue to offer physically distanced outdoor classes, online classes, and local delivery of store purchases.  Check the website for all the latest news, and you can always reach us by email at info@ottawaswordplay.com if you have questions. 

    Take care and stay safe!

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