Medieval combat and crafts at the Copperas Cove Library
By PAMELA GRANT
Medieval warriors clashed swords and shields trying to defeat their opponent and claim victory while dozens of children watched in awe, cheering on their favorites, all at our local library.
The Society for Creative Anachronism, or SCA, hosted a demonstration on medieval combat at the Copperas Cove Public Library on Wednesday as part of the library’s Summer Reading Program. After the demonstration, the children were given a balloon sword and invited to decorate and customize their very own cardboard shields.
“This is always fun to come to,” said Ty Downes (Tobias Gelvecke). “The kids really enjoy the crash and bang of the fighting.”
The show began with a demonstration of medieval combat. Both male and female warriors squared off in armored combat, rapier combat, and axe combat. After the brief demonstration, library director Kevin Marsh (Maelgwyn Dda) called up members of the Five Hills pageant royalty to talk about their favorite buildings in Copperas Cove. Each warrior chose a building to represent in armored combat. By the end of the battle, Marsh, representing the library, emerged as the victor. They also had a rapier battle to determine the best building in the world in which Chris Zakes (Tivar Moondragon) representing the Statue of Liberty, emerged victorious.
“We fight full strength, full speed, trying to win. Trying to win is what makes this fun. The other person is thinking, strategizing…” said Marsh. “It doesn’t matter who’s the biggest, or even who’s the strongest. What matters is who’s the cleverest, sometimes the trickiest, or who’s been studying longer or harder. Sometimes these things pay off.”
The SCA members had a blast showing off their hobby and teaching the children a thing or two about medieval combat. Marsh said that he hopes their demonstration might motivate some of the children to check out books with a medieval theme.
“I find it to be a blast. You get to be flamboyant and fun. You get to stab people and then hang out with them afterward,” said Veronica Pigg (Izza) about being in the SCA. She added that she really liked participating in the library demonstration and that she found it fun teaching the children about history.
“It was great. This is my second year seeing it,” said Mary Debellis who attended the event with her daughter Kira Debellis (9). “Kira enjoys it. She started reading on medieval things. She likes that the women fight too.”
“It was pretty cool. The swords were very loud,” said Kira Debellis. “I liked that the ladies had more swords than the boys did and they were more aggressive too.”
After the combat demonstration was completed, and the kids had learned a little bit about medieval combat and medieval weapons, they were given balloon swords and invited to create their very own cardboard shields which they could use for their own mock combat.
“It was really great,” said Amanda Sawyer brought her daughter Hayley Sawyer (6) to the event. “I think [the Summer Reading Program is] the best thing in Copperas Cove right now to be honest. It’s been so much fun. It’s our third year doing it. It inspires her to read, and she loves to come out and interact with everyone. Everything they do with the program is really wonderful.”
The Summer Reading Program continues next week with a variety of fun activities. On Tuesday at 10 a.m. is Toddler Time, and at 2 p.m. is the Teen Group. This week, the teens are invited to visit a horse rescue farm. On Wednesday at 2 p.m., the Copperas Cove Animal Shelter and Pet Supplies Plus will hold a class on taking care of our animals. Thursday will round off the week with performances by Safari Greg at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.
All of the Summer Reading Program events and activities are free to the public.