Winfield Jai at the Atlatl Range
Photo by Master Phillip the Pilgrim
By: Lady Mary of Montevale
Winfield Jai had a bit of a longer trip than some of us to attend his first Pennsic. It began in China.
In another sense, however, his journey to Cooper’s Lake began five years ago when he and some friends began to explore their interest in Western historical combat. By now there about 60 members in two groups, one located in southern China and the other in the northeast part of the country. They hope that together they will be the first official SCA group in China, as part of the Kingdom of the West.
Winfield’s reaction upon first seeing the many tents of Pennsic from the interstate on Wednesday was quite typical. “It’s really huge. It’s amazing.” His plan for this year is to enjoy himself and try many things before he has to leave on Sunday to begin his trip home. He is a participant already in armored combat and archery, both in China and in New Jersey where he will again be attending college in the fall.
On Friday, he had his first experience with axe throwing and atlatl. He took time to watch some rattan combat and mentioned that in China, he and his friends usually watch SCA fighting on YouTube. Such video footage serves as their source of information as they learn to make their own armor and other gear without the benefit of any nearby veteran SCA fighters to guide them.
Winfield has a Facebook page and welcomes friend requests.