Saturday, 16 April 2016

Ain't No Hatchet Job

You may have caught The Hockey Show on Thursday as we did our first live on-location broadcast. If you missed the show, the podcast will go up soon. You may also have watched us on Thursday evening as Beans and I were Periscoping and doing a Facebook Live broadcast from the newest Bad Axe Throwing location found in Winnipeg at 6-1393 Border Street. Now you might be asking what exactly does axe throwing have to do with hockey? Well, there's no direct link per se, but there are some indirect links that brought us out of the studio and into the axe-throwing world!

When it was first announced back in February that this Bad Axe Throwing company would be opening a franchise in Winnipeg, I don't think many people gave the announcement much notice. It seemed to fly under the radar, but I kept looking for more information from that point because I believed it would be something different than most entertainment options. Having been there in-person and seeing others participate at Bad Axe Throwing, I can tell you that Winnipeggers will be talking about how much fun it is after this weekend!

First off, axe throwing at Bad Axe Throwing is like darts on steroids. In saying that, there are some safety rules that must be followed, but they don't interfere with the amount of fun that happens at Bad Axe Throwing. There's an online waiver form that can be filled out via your smartphone or tablet prior to stepping into the axe-throwing lanes, and your axe-perts - DanOne and DanTwo here in Winnipeg - will go over the basic safety rules once more. Once the safety spiel is heard and understood, the two Dans demonstrate the overhead throw and highlight the importance of weight transfer, arm motion, and some important axe-throwing techniques. The two men are quite good at passing on the key pieces of information as I was able to stick an axe in the target on my first throw!

Ok, bragging aside about my axe-throwing technique, I haven't had this much fun hitting a target in a long time. Beans and I laughed a lot on Thursday evening, but there was even more laughter today at the Bad Axe Throwing open house as over a dozen people showed up around 2:30 to throw axes! Friends competed with friends in games, there was excitement and cheering when someone hit a bullseye, and everyone appeared to be enjoying their axe-throwing experiences! There was even some spontaneous competition that broke out as the two Dans were preparing their next lessons!

Once these newcomers to the axe-tion progressed to regularly hitting the target with the overhead throw, Dan and Dan moved the group into the one-armed throws. Again, there were some laughs and cheers as targets were hit, and the group now possessed a second way to bury a hatchet, so to speak, into the wooden target! To give you an idea of the axe-throwing technique, here's a video showing the one-armed toss!
As much as axe-throwing at Bad Axe Throwing is fun - and it is a blast when you're there with friends who like to chirp you - there is a business side to axe-throwing as well. Bad Axe Throwing requires you to book two weeks in advance and to have a party of eight. If you plan on just randomly showing up, there's a good chance that there won't be any throwing lanes open due to prior bookings. Make sure you call ahead and have a group of eight because even if you do show up randomly and find a way to get on the throwing floor, Bad Axe Throwing will charge you as if you showed up with a group of eight!

The cost per person is $44.25 plus taxes per person for your group of eight. I know that cost may raise some eyebrows, but I assure you that the minutes simply evaporate when you're up there throwing axes. A session at Bad Axe Throwing can last up to three hours depending on your group. When you figure that in, the cost is actually pretty economical for the time spent at Bad Axe Throwing. You'll also get to have one of the Dans run you through the paces, and he may even show off some trick shots like the underhand toss! Your axe-pert is a key part of the fun as he or she has a ton of knowledge about axe throwing and the games that can be played, so be sure to pay him or her some respect by listening to the advice dispensed!

I have lived by one credo on HBIC, and that is if I wouldn't endorse it, why would I tell you to look into it? Well, Bad Axe Throwing is one company I believe in, and I highly-encourage you to check it out. It's the top-ranked activity in Toronto according to TripAdvisor for "Fun Activities & Games", so I'm not the only one who is signing praises about the great time you'll likely have at Bad Axe Throwing!

Locations can be found across Canada in a ton of locations with two future locations getting prepped in Montreal, Quebec and Halifax, Nova Scotia! In other words, you're not far from axe-throwing fun anywhere in this great country of ours... unless you live in Saskatchewan. I'm sure there will be one in your province soon!

If you're heading down to the Winnipeg location, Bad Axe Throwing is holding their open house until 11pm tonight and from 2-8pm tomorrow where you can experience all of the axe-throwing craziness for free! Just remember to wear closed-toe shoes or you won't be able to throw axes!

As for the tie-in to hockey, the two representatives from Toronto - Melanie and Jesse - are from Toronto, and we had a good chat about playoffs and the Maple Leafs and the Jets on Thursday night! Both Dans are hockey fans as well, so feel free to get into Bad Axe Throwing and chat some hockey if you want. They're fans too!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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