After discovering the joys of Elk Fest this summer, I was thrilled to find a fondue set which resembled a Moose dressed up as Santa Claus . This was the inspiration for our first annual Chris Moose party and Elchfest tournament. Here is how the evening got going:
The party started at 8pm, and I waited until about 8:30 (when the vast majority of guests had arrived) to get everyone's attention and explain the format for the tournament. We were doing a single elimination tournament, best two out of three. After a couple of rookies expressed some concern, we went ahead and had a novice and open division, and we then played the exhibition match.
I lost my game after an intentional tragic occurrence (I knocked one of my stones off of the table to illustrate what happens), and we began the tournament with the first round in the open division (open had eight players, novice had six).
The tournament went off without a hitch. Since the table was rather centrally located, most of the people in the room were able to see most of the games, and the audience even did the "ooh"ing and "ahh"ing normally associated with watching championship golfers putt. There was also quite a lot of laughter involved with any tragic occurrence, and the Traditional Moose Dance of Supplication was enforced in all games (after winning a game, the winner may elect to point at his or her opponent and say "Moose," at which point the loser must make antlers with their fingers and bow three times).
As we moved into the later rounds, the crowds grew even more interested, to the point where people would quit doing things in other rooms (like making fondue) and watch the tighter games. For my part, I advanced to the third round of the open tournament, where I was upset by a close friend of mine who was playing for the third time. This was the finals of the open tournament, and I was actually happy to lose- I would've felt awkward throwing a tournament for an obscure game and winning it myself.
The champion of the novice division played so well in his debut that we did an exhibition finals between the two of them, where my close friend was again victorious. As a trophy, I gave him the packaging to one of my German Elchfest sets, that he can frame as he sees fit.
A great deal of Moose Drool brown ale was consumed during the evening, and everyone seemed to have a great time. Pictures from the tournament are available at brewwell dot com, look for the pictures tagged "elchfest."