St. Wenceslas Shooters Festival
Let me say that I‘d never heard of this event before and was invited to document it as a bonus to the Battle of Lipany. I got a phone call asking me to come to Lipany in the beginning of spring and when I agreed I was also invited here – to a competition of historical crossbowmen. A pretty rare event in Europe.
At that point I had it in my calendar as a “maybe”, with the intention to discuss it more at Lipany, but with the weather calamity I witnessed on Lipany I was glad to get home, to dry and warm.
Two weeks before the event I got a notification that I was supposed go to Český Brod, so I started to look for the person who called me in spring. Pepi confirmed that they still wanted me there, even though the number of contestants wouldn’t be as high as it usually was.
The historical camp and shooting range were on the old city walls, the same city walls that were the location of the Battle of Lipany, a few years ago. It’s true there weren’t many contestants, but it still took them a bigger part of the day to prove who is the best. They started with a regular round target, moved to a wooden beam and finished with a small hanging wooden plate for a target. Standing for the first two and sitting for the last one.
I cannot even guess about the skills of the participants, also because I’ve seen it for the first time. But according to the narrator, most of the contenders improved since the last year. The victory and main prize, a “hand painted target” went to a German shooter, mainly because only his dart stayed in the target. Everyone else hit the target but the dart didn’t stay.
These sharpshooter competitions have been taking place in Český Brod for eight years now and they’re not planning to stop anytime soon.
Other parts of the event program were a musical performance, a historical battle and the christening of a new canon.
I can’t speak for other visitors, but I enjoyed it very much. For me it was an interesting excursion to the neighbors, because I shoot from a longbow and this was very new to me.
True, this event took place a few weeks ago, but I didn’t have the time or opportunity to process the photographs – I was visiting Scotland and didn’t have any suitable device with me. I’m pretty occupied even now – this article was written on a mobile phone, while having a rest at the Polish castle Grodziec, where I’ll be documenting a larp. So the next article will be about: Mir 2 Mother Magdalena’s Fair.