Jul 18, 2018 0 Comments Posted by Tournaments and Big Games

Had a BLAST at Operation Honey Badger7

Operation Honey Badger 7 – Resurrection of Acinaces Dente – July 14th - 15th

Wow just WOW!

What a day!

300 Mag-fed players, 2 Generals, 1 Anti-tank Weapon, and an Armoured Personnel Carrier.

I don’t know where to start. 

Eh. Let’s start from the beginning. PRZ Paintball is a remarkable facility. Driving up to the previously retired Prince Edward Heights is almost overwhelming.  Originally, this facility was an institute for patients with mental disabilities. In operation from 1971 to 1999, the facility held upwards of 1500 residents but in 1999, was shut down and the building was left to age.

When you drive up to PRZ, you can’t help but appreciate it in all its glory. Standing 3 stories tall, having 100,000 square feet of playing area inside three massive buildings is the PRZ paintball that we have all come to love. Thank you to the wonderful staff for working so hard and putting their blood, sweat and tears since 2010 to give all of us this wonderful experience and facility to play at.

This trip to PRZ had some new experiences that I personally wasn’t expecting.  While setting up our booth I spotted a World War 2 Anti-Tank Weapon. I initially assumed the event featured this prop just to make the field seem more realistic. Well, I was very quickly proven wrong.  Before I knew it, Major Mike Calnan from The Swords and Ploughshares Museum was shouting “Firing NOW, Firing NOW, Firing NOW” which was followed by one of the loudest BOOMS I had ever heard. They had literally just fired a blank in the Anti-tank weapon I had spotted earlier. Yup, definitely not a prop after all.

Just as I was recovering from that epic blast, I was treated to a tank drive-by. At least I thought that was a tank. I soon learned that it was an Armoured Personnel Carrier and not a tank. APC AND Anti-Tank Weapon? OH MY! I was like a kid in a candy store. I had to do it all.

So the morning continued and the Canadian Armed forces fired the 11th hour shot from a QF 6-pounder. Game play quiets for just a moment, all who are off the field stop and watch as the gun is fired and the uniformed men stand and take a moment. Thank you to all those who had served and continue to serve our beautiful nation.

The action is then heated on the field and the vendors get to talk amongst each other. It was great getting to talk to everyone. Defcon paintball and First Strike were to our left. Across the row, Milsig, Patch Panel, Commando Paintball, Tactical 74 and Modern Combat Sports.  It is nice to get to talk amongst the vendors because sure we all work for different companies but we are people too. I even learnt that I have things in common with another vendor that has nothing to do with Paintball. Thank you to Sweet Marie and Dave from Commando Paintball for keeping our water cold as we forgot our cooler as well as Evan from Milsig for bringing everyone cold water as it was very humid and you couldn’t keep the water coming fast enough.

So the game continued and it was my turn to show all the wonderful Badlands viewers the first of two surprises. I had the chance to fire a 6-pounder! I was definitely nervous and excited all at the same time. I couldn’t believe it, I got to fire the same weapon that was used to blow holes through tanks during WWII.  I was able to talk with Major Mike Calnan before my turn and I learned this gun was built in Regina, Canada. *YAY Canadian Made* I also got to learn about The Swords and Ploughshares Museum. The museum’s name is based on a Biblical admonishment: “They shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.” This quote was meant to Turn to Peaceful Pursuits and Away from War. The museum houses upwards of 50 historic military vehicles and countless other pieces on loan from private owners.

After thanking Major Calnan for the information about the museum and gun we were about to fire, he showed me the correct position to approach the gun, how to load it  (just like in Hollywood) and then he warned everyone that we were going to fire again. I knelt down behind the weapon as many had before me and when I was given the signal, I pulled the lever. I’m pretty sure I also closed my eyes. I couldn’t believe it, I did it. Thank you to Sweet Marie for filming me while I did it.  And holy! What a sound, what a feeling, what a rush! Thank you to everyone who made the highest sacrifice for me to be able to experience this piece of history in such a way.

At lunch time, many players came off the field. Now was my chance to use the APC.  Again, Major Mike Calnan was with us for the history lesson as well as safety briefing before we were to head out in this 15 ton piece of machinery.  Historically speaking, this was a British FV432, originally introduced in the 1960s and is still being used for transporting infantry on the battlefield. 500 of these units are still in active service.

Let me tell you I couldn’t imagine having 13 people inside this vehicle. Sweet Marie, the driver, Major Calnan and myself went on our ride and it was hot. I was in a t-shirt, and the sweat was still pouring off of me. I couldn’t imagine being completely geared up, shoulder to shoulder with 12 other people and headed into battle. If you haven’t already please check out my tour of PRZ paintball from the APC on the Badlands Facebook page.

Gameplay started again after lunch around 1:45 PM and ended up being cut short due to lightning around 2:30 PM. However, after a brief recess to let the weather pass, the players were able to head back into the buildings and play to the end of the game.

Altogether, this was a wonderful event.  Thanks to Adam and his great event staff for all their hard work and commitment to putting on another amazing Operation Honey Badger as well as PRZ paintball for having an top notch field and letting everyone have the opportunity to play. To the Swords and ploughshares museum for bringing their wonderful equipment for all to have safe opportunities to learn more about history.

Hope everyone else enjoyed the event as much as I did.

This is Elizabeth “Beth” Signing off. If you are looking to join us at an upcoming event check out our event schedule https://www.badlandspaintball.com/badlands-event-schedule-2018.html

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