Greetings from the Pennsic 49 Family Activities Coordinator!
Photo by Baroness Clarice Roan
I know that it feels like Pennsic just happened, but next years’ staff is already hard at work preparing for Pennsic 49. Family Activities cannot run without the help of many hands, and we are looking for volunteers for several of our coordinator positions, as well as folks who think they might like to shadow those jobs to possibly do it in a few years. We’d love to prevent burnout by having many folks trained on jobs. Please fill out the linked form or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in any or more than one of these jobs. For jobs requiring an SCA background check, there is plenty of time to get one, and I’ll be happy to walk you through the process.
Mistress Leonete D’Angely, Family Point Coordinator
Their Highness’s Gareth Kincade and Juliana Delamere are looking for help from the Populace on their Viking Royal Wardrobe. Are you interested in being involved in making our next Royals look fabulous? Do you have ideas, skills, thoughts to share?
Interested? We like everyone to share with us ideas for wardrobe items that fit the time period, but don’t worry, we have quite a few starting ideas as well. And if you don’t have a specific idea, but would like to participate, we will always find something for you to do. Together, we will find a way to contribute your skill.
Join our Facebook group, AE Wardrobe in progress AS53, to see what’s happening, and get a behind the scenes glimpse of all that is involved in the production of a Royal Wardrobe.
A message from the current Co-Signets regarding a call for Letters of Intent:
It is time to request letters of intent for those who may be interested in pursuing the next term of office for Kingdom Signet. That said, it has always been our intention to serve two terms as Co-Signets, should those who make the decision deem us to be worthy of the honor.
First of all, please bear in mind that Scribes are the only pure production artists we have in the SCA: Everything they create is freely given away, they work alone and they pay for all of their materials and supplies. Interested parties should know that there are a few skill sets that are required to do the job. These include:
Exceptional organizational skills and keeping the Royal scribal secrets, secret.
Knowledge of database management is critical: keeping accurate records for the seated Royals, the Jewel Herald and for any who will review Signet records in years to come. This includes a follow up edit to the database after every Royal Progress event to specifically detail all Court business which occurred and what did not transpire.
The Signet works closely with the Crown and the designated Jewel Herald – this is a team effort and flows smoothly when all parties work together. This requires excellent, respectful communication skills, responding to requests from the Royals, Jewel Herald, other Kingdom officers, our scribes and the populace at large. Traveling to Royal Progress events is an expectation of this position. Further, the Signet is expected to supervise his/her team including any deputies appointed and the assigned work they accept. Communication also includes the ability to write Curia reports, Kingdom policies and even proposals to various Kingdom committees.
Assigning, collecting and presenting scrolls for signature is only a part of the job description.
Education: Artistic development for each and every scribe that desires assistance. Providing resources and materials as requested. The Signet should have a strong base of knowledge of artistic techniques & processes, historical references, materials, and several styles of illuminated manuscripts. Educational deputies may be appointed to assist with the tasks/projects: Heralds and Scribes event, Pennsic Scribal college, War Practice Scribal Playtime, Academy offerings and more. The Signet is the primary resource for all Kingdom scribes.
Community building, fundraising for the Scribe’s Retreat, mentoring, networking new scribes with experienced scribes.
Applicants should expect to spend between 15-20 hours per week and more prior to Coronation and Pennsic.
For those who wish to submit letters, please provide the following: A resume and a letter of intent to include any deputies planned to implement a two year plan of action specifically detailing what you intend to accomplish and who you will enlist for assistance. Please be specific. Letters may be sent to the Kingdom Seneschal and to our Prince and Princess.
The following information was provided by THL Aaliz de Gant, the Kingdom Equestrian Officer based on an announcement by the Society Equestrian Officer:
At the request of the SCA Board of Directors, a new waiver project has recently been completed. This project involved updating waivers to be used to events which include equestrian activities. In the past, waivers were handled in one of two ways. If horses were limited to areas that were restricted to equestrians, the MIC could opt to have only those interacting with horses complete the equestrian waiver. If the event allowed for more interaction, those members with blue cards would sign the additional equestrian waiver at troll. Those without blue cards would sign both the equestrian waiver and the society liability waiver.
Under the new policy, a combined wavier which includes both equestrian and society waiver language has been created which will be signed at troll for all attendees of an event which includes equestrian activities. In other words, the combined waiver will be signed by those with a blue card on file with the society as well as those without a blue card. There will be no need for event attendees without a blue card on file to sign a second waiver.
Due to equine liability laws in various states, there are state specific waivers for two of the states in Æthelmearc. For events held in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, state specific waivers are required. Events held in New York will use the standard society waiver. The Equestrian Marshal in Charge of the event at which equestrian activities are taking place will need to sign each waiver. Waivers will then be sent to the waiver clerk in the normal fashion.
The new waivers can be found at here under Adult Equestrian Waivers.
In order to raise funds to support the upcoming reign of TRH Marcus and Margerite, Duchess Christence, Baroness Ellesbeth Donofrey, and their cohorts will offer a variety of lovely items this weekend to part you from your coins. Due to recent changes in the State of New York with regards to games of chance, the format for the fundraiser will be a silent auction. All proceeds will go to the Kingdom Travel Fund. If you’d like to donate an item, please contact either Baroness Ellesbeth or Duchess Christence via Facebook.
Baroness Ellesbeth has set up a Facebook page here where you can view some of the items that have been donated and will be in the auction. You can also use this page to contact her or Duchess Christence about donating items.
Here are just a few samples of the items that have been donated for the auction, which include jewelry, buttons, woven trim, a hood, and two whimsical knitted “helmets” among other items. Photos courtesy of Baroness Ellesbeth.
To the most sylvan Kingdom of Æthelmearc and her most noble populace does your Authorization Clerk send warm greetings!
The time has come for my first term in office to come to a close. As such, I am putting a call out for letters of intent for those that might be interested in pursuing the office of Kingdom Authorizations Clerk. I fully intend on begging Their Royal Majesties for another term, but in compliance with Kingdom Law, am requesting letters from interested parties to be submitted no later than December 31, 2015. The next term will begin at Kingdom 12th Night on January 9, 2016 and lasts for two years(01/2016-01/2018).
The office of Authorizations Clerk is a tedious, yet rewarding office. It falls under the Kingdom Earl Marshal and works very closely with all marshals, fighters, fencers, and riders of our ferocious army. On average the office requires between 3-15 hours of work per week, with very serious peaks prior to large events, especially Pennsic. Skills required for the office are primarily Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word, with a healthy dose of people skills and handwriting deciphering thrown in for good measure. The main responsibilities for the office of Authorization Clerk include:
1. Creating and distributing all Æthelmearc authorization cards
2. Maintaining electronic and paper files of all authorizations(for 4 years)
3. Ensuring that the Kingdom Earl Marshal has access to fighter database if needed
4. Reporting to the Kingdom Earl Marshal at regular intervals (quarterly) with copies being forwarded to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, Chancellor of the Youth Martial Academy, Youth Fencing Provost, and others as requested. This report should include the following: total number of current adult and youth authorizations in the kingdom, number of authorized rattan, number of authorized rapier, number of authorized equestrian, number of authorized youth, any other information upon request.
The Bog would like to welcome you to our event this year.
We’re calling it Throwback Three Day in the hopes that you’ll appear
To celebrate our past with us, it will be such a treat.
We’ll have marshal activities, scribal arts, and the best food to eat.
Their Majesties will be here, and the Prince and Princess, too.
What better day to meet up with old friends and with new.
Please join the Barony of St. Swithin’s Bog as we celebrate our past at this year’s Throwback Three Day event this weekend. We’re in the mood to reminisce, so bust out that old garb you haven’t worn in years, and bring us your stories and old photographs from Bog events past.
Throwback Three Day will be held Friday July 17th-Sunday July 19th at the New Germany Grove- 1635 New Germany Rd Summerhill, Pa 15958. The site opens on Friday July 17th at 5:00pm and closes promptly at 12:00pm on Sunday. Camping is free and very much encouraged. No shower facilities are available, but please feel free to bring your own amenities. The site is discreetly wet and above ground fires are permitted. No pets allowed on site. The autocrat for this event is THLady Ursula of Rouen (Danielle Duvall, PO Box 661, Shepherdstown, WV 25443). Any questions can be sent to her at 540-287-1748 or Ursula.email@example.com. Co-Autocrat for this event is THLady Rois O’Faye called Rosheen (Tracey Zimmerman) who can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The site fee for this weekend of friends, food and fellowship will be $10 for adults, $5 for children agest 6-17. Children 5 and under are the esteemed guests of Their Excellencies. Checks can be made payable to “SCA, Inc; Barony of St. Swithin’s Bog”. There will be a $5 non-member charge.
Refreshments will be available Friday night for those camping, as well as breakfast Saturday morning. A Saturday day board is included in the site fee. Feast will be available Saturday evening for $8, and will be limited to the first 64 people. All dietary concerns should be sent to our Head Cook who promises several “Throw Back” treats and a day board that is sure to astound, Mistress AElfra Long (Sherry Meyers) at email@example.com.
Numerous activities will be held throughout the day Saturday including: the last leg of the Kingdom A&S Challenge, the 7 Pearls fencing tournament, and the AE 500 tournament. There will be fencing and heavy pick-ups in the afternoon, as well as throwing on the thrown weapons range. Scribes are encouraged to bring their paints and brushes and compete in the 7th Annual Iron Scribe competition.
I will return to my article series after Pennsic, but since we are now truly in the season to prepare for War, I wanted to remind everyone (or maybe tell you, if you didn’t know), that Æthelmearc traditionally sings on our way to Opening Ceremonies (and if there’s time, while we’re waiting). Anyone who is marching with a barony or group for Opening Ceremonies, or anyone else who just wants to participate with the kingdom, is encouraged to come and sing with us!
“But I don’t know any Æthelmearc songs!” you cry.
Well, have we got a deal for you! It so happens that the Æthelmearc College of Bards has many of our kingdom songs available at the College website:
Each of the songs has two links: one for a downloadable version of sheet music, and one for a downloadable mp3 of the song.
One caveat about the sheet music: most of these songs feature a lot of variation in the melody and rhythm from one verse to the next, depending on the demands of the lyrics and the singer’s individual preferences. This is not choral singing; the music is meant to be sung freely, so the notes on the page are more of a guide to the melody than an iron-clad representation of it. It’s certainly enough to get everyone going, though!
If you want a copy of the songbook… the 2007 edition (which is the last update we can find) is there for your printing pleasure:
The lyric sheet is designed to be folded to fit into a pocket or pouch or you can download either copy to your portable pocket girdle book (i.e., your phone or tablet) and carry the songs with you that way.
After Pennsic, there will be a new version of the songbook. No, really. There will also probably be an article on the difficulty of herding bards who are even harder to herd than cats….
Meanwhile, if the Songs of Æthelmearc are not enough for you, and you are desperate for more bardic advice, I recommend the excellent series of blog posts on the seven bardic sins written by Master Brendan the Bard.
Finally, I encourage everyone who will be attending Pennsic to find at least one performance, bardic circle, exhibition, or performance competition to attend. There is immense talent on the Pennsic stages, which can easily inspire and impress. There are also a complete catalog of bardic classes, including performance workshops, and the annual Bardic Collegium which offers discussion of the state of the bardic arts and tips and tales about performers’ efforts to grow and shape the community of performers within the SCA. Check out the Pennsic University for more details, and the Performing Arts schedule to find concerts, exhibitions, competitions, and other activities which will surely please and amaze.
Of particular note, Æthelmearc has been invited to participate this year in the inter-kingdom exhibition, which previously has been limited to the East and the Midrealm. More details to come, but the exhibition will be on Saturday, August 1, beginning at 5:00 PM. Come and support our Kingdom’s performers as they showcase their skills.
Pennsic is coming up soon! Her Majesty, Queen Gabrielle, has been hard at work making baldrics for the gentles who will be chosen as Æthelmearc’s Champions in each of the War Points. Because our allies will also contribute Champions, Their Majesties don’t know yet exactly how many gentles from Æthelmearc will be participating, but there will be teams of skilled and inspirational gentles filling the following slots.
His Majesty, King Timothy, says that He is working with Sir Stefan Ulfkellson, Kingdom Warlord, to choose fighters for the three Heavy Weapons Champion Battles. “Prowess alone will not get you a slot on the team,” His Majesty said. “Attendance matters. I’m looking for the people who put their heart and soul into going to every muster and really care about being on the team. I want the fighters who will be thrilled to receive a champion’s baldric and cherish it for the rest of their lives. There is no “entitlement” – being a hot stick won’t get you a slot on a Champions team if you don’t put in the effort to show up and work hard.” The three heavy weapons champions’ teams are listed below:
Unbelted Champions: the first War Point of Pennsic 44, this battle held immediately after Opening Ceremonies features a total of 40 fighters per side, none of whom may be Knights or Masters at Arms.
Belted Champions: immediately after the Unbelted Champions battle, it features 30 fighters per side, all of whom are either Knights or Masters at Arms.
Matched Champions: immediately after the Belted Champions battle, it features 30 fighters from each side who have not fought in either the belted or unbelted tournaments. In this battle, fighters are sent out in small groups of 1-5 fighters, with numbers matched by the opposing side.
Photo by Lady Valentina de la Volpe.
Arts and Sciences:
This war point will be held on Wednesday of War week throughout the day, and features 14 artisans per side. The A&S Champions may not be Laurels. Queen Gabrielle says “We are trying to showcase artisans from the more remote parts of the Kingdom who don’t have as much opportunity to have their work seen, although we also want to showcase some well-known artisans and challenge them to come up with something really special and unique.” To help Their Majesties find such skilled but lesser known artisans, the Kingdom A&S Ministers, Master Fridrikr Tomasson and Mistress Orianna Fridrikskona have been hosting A&S Displays at events around the kingdom, where artisans are encouraged to enter works in progress and seek feedback from other artisans and the populace. Her Majesty notes, “Rather than spending six months working on something and then find out that you could have done something different at the beginning, we thought it would be helpful for artisans to get feedback during the process of creating something. Master Fridrikr and Mistress Orianna printed up booklets for comments that We and they have been sharing with those who want to have their work displayed.” Mistress Euriol of Lothian, who is coordinating the A&S Champions for Pennsic, set up a Facebook page for the A&S Champions, where the artisans who have been selected so far are sharing their research, discussing their efforts to create or purchase supplies, equipment, tools, and ingredients for their projects, and generally encouraging each other.
Photo by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope.
Photo by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope.
There will be 30 Archery Champions per side, with the shoot held on Wednesday of War week. King Timothy has appointed THLord Juan Miguel Cézar as Captain of the Archery Champion’s Team, and tasked him with choosing the members of the team. His Lordship says, “Enthusiasm is definitely one of the criteria that His Majesty impressed upon me that he feels is an important attribute for each member of the Archery Champion’s team to have. The chance to shoot with some of the best archers in the Known World is both daunting and exhilarating at the same time, and can really make a huge impact on a person and their relationship with the SCA. An experience like this has a chance to take a blossoming archer and give them a long lasting sense of belonging in the archery community. That does not mean that skill and prowess are to be thrown out the window, it just means that such things are a secondary criterion. Also being considered is the disposition of the archer. We want to avoid people who are sore losers or cannot get along with the other archers. Often the champions shoot takes 6 to 8 hours to complete and that can be trying on anyone.” THL Juan Miguel also noted that the kinds of shoots that archers encounter in the Champion’s Tournament challenge archers in unusual ways. “One might think that Royal Round scores would serve as a good metric, but I have found that more often than not it is an untrue measure of skill. The Champions’ shoot tests an archer in ways a Royal Round never can. Once we have a list of potential archers, we will have them come out to the range one or two nights for some practice to be better able to gauge their aptitude for this type of competition. After that comes the hard part of choosing the candidates that have the best combination of spirit and skill to add to the team, and of course negotiating with our allies, who will also contribute archery champions.”
Photo by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope.
As Rapier Warlord, Maestro Orlando di Bene del Vinta will recommend the fencers who should represent Æthelmearc to Their Majesties. As with the other champions, Their Majesties have asked him to find people with enthusiasm and passion as well as skill. Maestro Orlando says, “I will be recommending individuals who demonstrate prowess as well as dedication to the rapier community through their participation and activity. Simply winning a particular tournament does not guarantee that a recommendation will follow, or that one will be named to the team. Additionally, Their Majesties and I will be looking at who would represent Æthelmearc well on the field; meaning a fencer who is very honorable in combat, comports themselves well on the field, and fights well.” There are two Rapier Champions’ Tournaments:
Rapier Champions: 20 fencers will represent each side in this battle, to be held on Wednesday at 11 am.
Rapier Heroic Champions: 12 fencers from each side will compete one-on-one in this War Point, with at least one of the bouts to be Cut & Thrust. It will be held immediately after the Rapier Champions Battle on Wednesday.
Photo by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope
Master Augusto Giuseppe da San Donato will lead the Thrown Weapons team, choosing those throwers whose commitment as well as skill exemplifies the best of Æthelmearc and its allies. Twelve throwers from each side will compete in this war point to be held on Wednesday of War week from 3:00-6:00 pm. Master Giuseppe has contacted the Thrown Weapons Marshals of the Allied Kingdoms and asked them to send him a list of their all of their throwers who are going to Pennsic so he can reach out to them. He will be hosting a series of try-outs in the evenings early in the War. These try-outs will be open to everyone from Æthelmearc and our allied kingdoms. Throwers who are interested in trying out should look for a note regarding days and times at the Thrown Weapons tent. The prospective Champions will throw for a couple of hours at each try-out so they can be observed by the allied marshals. Master Giuseppe says they “will be looking for people who embody their Kingdoms down to their soul.” They want people who teach, work well with others, and learn from each other as well as exhibiting skill. He will choose the top 12 throwers plus three or four alternates for the Champion’s team. Master Giuseppe notes that three years ago, which was the last time Pennsic pitted Æthelmearc against the combined forces of the East and Middle, Æthelmearc and our allies outscored the other side by more than double. He is very proud of that, and expects our team to do equally well this year.
Photo by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope
Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope wrote this article with contributions from Their Majesties, King Timothy and Queen Gabrielle, THLord Juan Miguel Cezar, Maestro Orlando di Bene del Vinta, Master Fridrikr Tomasson, and Master Augusto Giuseppe da San Donato.
Mark your calendars for the weekend of June 19-21 as the Shire of Port Oasis is trying something new. Hosting an all tournament event to showcase pageantry and inspiration as well as honor and prowess. When asked what sparked the idea for a different type of event, Lord Olaf Steinabrjotr, co-autocrat for the event, said, “The model of this event was conceived out of a few of us talking when we discussed the lack of pageantry and the lack of tournaments in our southern reaches of the kingdom, and also the fact that we would have to travel outside the kingdom to get to an event.”
There is a full day of tournaments scheduled and announced:
Bertie Beetle Tourney
Each fighter has to cut off an opponent’s body part. The purpose is to collect a whole fighter by body part. (Head, body, left leg, right leg, left arm, right arm). Once a needed blow is landed, the bout ends. All opponents continue to fight other bouts (AKA Round Robin) until a fighter collects a whole body. If an opponent is wounded with a body part already collected, the bout continues. If the opponent is killed with a headshot, the bout ends. All forms acceptable.
Roman Style Grand Melee Tournament
All in melee. last two standing combatants will do best two out of three.
Olaf’s Polearm Challenge
Single elimination pole arm tournament. First combatant to score 3 killing blows against an opponent will advance. Arm shots are ignored during this tournament.
William Marshal Tourney
Each fighter is given five coins. Then a Round Robin structure of tourney is held. Each “loss” of a bout requires the fighter to give up one coin to the winner. Once the fighter runs out of coins, they are eliminated from the tourney. The winner is the fighter with all (or a predetermined amount of) the coins. AKA: Ransom Tourney. Round robin or speed tournament depending on amount of combatants
Basic Single Elimination Tournament
All forms are welcome.
The Final Tournament
A double elimination tournament fought in the same fashion as crown tournament.
Each match will be a best 2 out of 3 to advance farther.
The final bout between the top combatants will be the best 3 out of 5 in each of the different forms : weapon and shield, two weapon, great sword, pole arm, spear.
Co-Autocrat Lord Olafr fighting tournament-style. Photo by Master Alexandair
The final tournament will be comprised of the winners from each of the five tournaments as well as a sixth combatant that will be chosen to enter the list based on the deeds and chivalric values demonstrated throughout the tournaments.
Not a fighter? Never fear! Port Oasis has also come up with a Day of Tournaments for the Arts & Sciences crowd which has a little something built in for everyone.
The Water Tournament
Our shire’s heraldry features a boat and water. Our spring event was canceled due to water related issues, but in mid June’s heat we’ll most likely welcome some extra water to cool off. This tournament will honor the many aspects of water in any non-performance medium.
The Period Technology Tournament
Let’s illuminate the populace’s knowledge of period technology! Please share your working pieces, models, blueprints, research and other items of technological interest from anywhere within the known world of our period.
The Handout Tournament
To make up for a lack of class offerings, we are offering the Handout Tournament. This means that those who would have attended your class wont have to decide between two activities, and you don’t have to worry about space or pre-approval from those in charge of the event.
The War Preparations Tournament
For this tournament, please show us any pieces that are related to period wars (such as a specific battle, people involved in a war, etc) but also anything created for warfare in the Modern Middle Ages such as your period camp equipment, garb meant just for war, war meals, fighter kits, photos of handmade pavillions, etc. Please be creative and include any references that you have for this.
The Bardic Tournament
The Bardic Tournament will be judging for a period performance and an original performance. Any performance art (music, story, poem, dance, juggling, etc.) is welcome for either tournament. These will be judged by the populace.
There are Archery and Thrown Weapons Tournaments in the works as well. The full event announcement and more details can be found here.