Here’s my Angus City Championship tournament report. I got an email from Pete DeShaw of Pokemon Organized Play on October 11th detailing the instructions to sanction and fill out the application form for the upcoming City Championships. Those who got this email were also given a total amount of events they could organize – mine said I could do 2 events. At that time, I don’t even remember if the fall Battle Roads events were even over, but I know that we didn’t even have Secret Wonders yet. Also on the application form was the interesting news that the events could only be accepted for events in a period of 7 weeks, which was down from last year’s 11 weeks. Not a lot of workable weekends I guess, but still doable. Deadline to apply was November 5th. Not a ton of time to work with to apply either, seeing as I had to arrange the event venues according to the best possible use of the two of the possible 4 that I had originally in mind, work around the varying schedules of the venues, and hopefully not conflict with dates that the PTO from Ontario – Marvin – planned on using. So it took me some time to work things out. I talked with the owners of the venues, and discussed dates, which took a few days, and then found out that one of the possible venues – the person who normally books the events for Angus Lion’s clubhouse was on holidays for a week. However ….. there was a snag that I didn’t find out about until the actual day of the Angus event. I’ll come to that in a bit. That put back the actual date that I could sanction and apply for both my City championships. In the meantime I got in touch with Marvin and told him my dates that I was hoping for and found out that they conflicted with his. Well, that was a tough call, but they were the only possible dates that I could make work, so unfortunately for those here in Ontario who were hoping to work on ratings, I had to take what I could get. Due to whatever scheduling problems they knew about at the time, December 8th was the only open date the Angus City Championship could run. It was getting down to crunch time for me, so I ended up sanctioning the events on Oct 27th, and sending in the application on that date. The other 2 venues were at stores that do have a few pokemon players, but aren’t closeby for me, so were secondary for possible events just in case POP decided to grant my request for another event. Looks like it didn’t happen – sorry guys. Now you would think that would be it wouldn’t you? Nope, just waiting for the event date would be the least of it! Now the work started. I had a few things to make sure were onhand when the date came, and decisions to make regarding prizes – all of which had to be done beforehand. So what did I do? For a few days I thought about it, and wrote down in a list what main things I had to do – should I give out more prizes than POP gives for prize support? Hmmm, well, Yes, I think I should. So what are they going to be? Are packs enough? No, I don’t think so … people expect to get the odd extra pack at events. Definitely give out packs, but surprise add-ins will convince people to come back. So what do I offer? I had to arrange for that. Next on my list – make sure I have the proper software – newest version of TOM, newest compendium, update tournament rules and penalty guidelines. As the days got closer, more and more important stuff crept into the equation – I had to make a competitive deck for a player (who didn’t end up showing up by the way!), arrange for possible extra judging help, print up table numbers, laminate them at Staples, set up the lunch with the pizza joint, so I got a good price for everyone, and able to get the food prepared reasonably on time, tried to work on a strategy to pay for the venue (since they asked for cash as soon as the event was over), and to be honest - I didn’t have it! The check for running Battle Roads wasn’t in, I was between pays, and used up most of my cash working on my project truck that should have been on the road a month ago! Then the day before the event came ….. then the work really started! I had to make sure I could bring along all my cards, but identify and make accessible some cards that were mentioned that certain players planned on using, and needed to borrow from us, make sure I had enough ink in the printer, paper to print on, enough registration slips, decklist sheets, pens and pencils, scizors, tape, don’t forget the extra pop id forms, extra energies (just in case), normal prizes, extra prizes, city winners forms (now where did they go all of a sudden?), make sure I get the event started on the computer so I can just open up the file when I get there and start on it (better go online to make sure I have the sanctioning number correct. Oh yeah! Oops, I forgot to phone the Angus Lion’s coordinator until the night before the event. Hmm, remember the snag I told you about earlier? Ouch! “I’m afraid I’m going to have to put a time limit on your event.” “Excuse me?” I replied. “Ummm, yeah, sorry about this, but it looks like we double booked the hall for that date. It happened while I was away on vacation, and I didn’t hear anything about it until just lately.” “Argh! (strangling noise emanating from my throat as I was clutching my chest) You’re not really serious are you?” “Yep, I’m afraid so. You’ll have to be out of there by 3 pm so the next group can set up for the evening meal.” “Well, the last time we had an event there it lasted like until 5 pm, but …, ” I said, “I’ll see what I can do.” Well …. I guess there’s no point to crying over spilled milk, so I just got the stuff ready to be taken out to the van in the morning – I’ll deal with it as best I can then. The night before the event I went to bed at 1:30 am (normally I’m in bed at 11:30). Next day, seeing that Angus is about 5-8 minutes from my house, and the event registration was supposed to start at 10, I decided we (my son Josh was the head judge at the event, and I) had to be out of the house at 8:45 at the very latest. That meant getting up just a bit before 7. Not a ton of sleep for me, that’s for sure. I got up, fed the dogs, shaved, showered, got Josh up, then started to get the stuff into the van while Josh got ready. Though we never got our morning coffee beforehand, we were on time in getting to the hall to open up for the players. Then we got it set up for 50 – though in total there were only 24 people who showed up. While Josh got the computer programs running up to speed, I went to get the coffee finally! People came, registered, we checked decks etc., made announcements, and actually started the event on time. I mentioned we had to pay for the venue, and people generously helped out by buying available stuff - that helped immensely! That was one worry off my mind. And guess what? We still had stuff left over for some extra random prizes to be given out during the rounds! Josh and I had very few judgement calls to make – surprisingly few in fact, and only managed to give out one warning for unsportsmanlike conduct the whole day. One local player got lost trying to get to the event, and showed up after round 2 started. I felt bad for him since he was a regular at our league in the past, but has some learning disability, and he wanted to play so badly, so I put him in. However since TOM normally started with 8 players with 3 rounds, it arbitrarily decided to give him a bye in the last round, and not let him play in the 3rd round, and not open up a 4th round either! Poor Steve! Then I felt even worse! Well, believe it or not, even with a break for lunch, we were done by 3:10 or so, and were out of there by 3:30. It was a good day – no matter which way you sliced it. So is that it? Nope! Due to some real life issues (I had to deal with them first of course), I never got to report the event until Sunday night. But I had to gather the info from the one computer to my main home computer first! So that got done finally, but not the rest. Then I had to find the email discussing winners, and fill that out and report it, plus find a penalty report, learn how to use it, and email that in too. Then I had to find and send in an email for reporting the amount of players in both my events combined. Overall, the event wasn’t over until late last night for me. It was fun. I’d do it again. I can’t wait to do so in fact. But I think I’ll go to someone else’s events one of these times to just enjoy it as a player. Hey, if you see me across from you some day, I hope my experience here will come to mind to help you see how much more fun I'm having as a player! Hope to see you soon. Garret Dent Pokemon Professor, and tournament organizer for Angus City Championship.