Saturday, September 22, 2018

D-Day Conneaut 2018

There are two things that I get to look forward to each year; one is Historicon, which I missed for the first time in six years (to which I am still incredibly bitter about, lol!), and the other is the D-Day reenactment in Conneaut, Ohio.

If you've followed the blog for a while you'll have seen posts on this event before. This is my sixth year participating in the event and my seventh overall.

Over 1500 reenactors come from all over the country, and overseas as well - we had several guys come over from England this year - to participate in this reenactment of June 6th, 1944. Estimates for visitors to the event over the course of the three days is somewhere around 30,000.

And each year, just like a broken record, I always say it keeps getting bigger and better. Of course, this year didn't fail to impress.

They have a fully functional spotlight that looks absolutely amazing in the darkness of night.

The 88 continues to be the one demonstration I look forward to seeing every single year.

I've said it before, but when this thing goes off you can literally feel the blast, even being hundreds of yards away.

What an absolutely amazing photo this is!


Lots more demonstrations and events occurred on the beach this year, with amour being a focus.

These almost look like production stills from a film.

I can always count on someone to capture some amazing photos of the planes making their runs along the beach, and these are some of my favorites.

Using grayscale for the photos really makes them look like they were taken in 1944.

The French resistance have their own battle reenactment now.

I'd been wanting to ride in the sidecar of one of the motorcycles for years now and finally this year got lucky enough to catch a ride in one while heading back to the reenactor parking lot.

This was the motorcycle I got to ride in, and it was brilliant! Though admittedly a bit odd looking with me in my Airborne uniform :)

I'd also never been able to ride in a jeep in all the years I've been doing this event - well check that one off the list too! I was lugging the box of football uniforms and a good 'ol Willey's jeep stopped and got me to the parade ground. Maybe it was my uniform, but let me tell you, I had a time throwing my leg up and over to get in the jeep lol! The only thing left now is to get inside a tank :)

We also had our annual Allies V Axis football match. This year I was asked to captain the Allied squad and get the entire match organized. Unfortunately a period accurate match ball isn't available so I tried to find something that would only look marginally out of place.

I used the opportunity to spend way too much of my own money to get our uniforms to match up just like the movie "Victory" or "Escape To Victory" as it's known in Europe.

The blue socks were a cinch to find, but who knew finding plain white shorts could be such an incredible hassle?

It was literally two days before the event that the shorts finally arrived, so a happy ending and for the first time ever I think we really looked the part - and thankfully continued our winning streak. We'd gone down 1-3 midway through the first half and my heart just sunk because if we'd have lost, it would have been on my watch, and we have yet to lose this match since it began.

I take absolutely horrible photos, unless I don't know the photo is being taken. Which is why these are actually ok and I don't look like a goof, though that bald spot is just awful :)

With all that being said, the photo above is really what this event is all about. Pictured is Al Klugiewicz, a 102 year old vet of the Signal Corp. This is Al in the Message Center, right in front of the telegraph typing out code and not missing a beat. Absolutely one of the most amazing things I've seen since coming to this event!

I've built a couple of small 4Gound kits that should be next up in the blog. As well as a little tutorial on how I make my new and improved clear bases.

As always, thanks for looking!

Friday, August 31, 2018

More Kickstarters Arriving

I had two more Kickstarters show up this month from last years crazy number of pledges I made.

The first was Spies and Patriots 28mm Wargaming Miniatures from Brigade Games, based out of New Jersey here in the states.

Honestly I'm not sure why I backed this one, especially when I backed at the highest level possible with the most figures. I have more spi-fi miniatures than I know what to do with lol! And now I have 28 more??!! Every backer also got a free copy of the pulp rules "Where Heroes Dare" - in the first photo above.

There are a couple neat poses of figures, like the ones above, that should get themselves onto the table sooner than later. Lon and the gang at Brigade Games get an A+ on the fulfillment - the project funded on May 30th and had a July shipping estimate, and I had my box on July 30th.

Next to show up was the new expansion to Blood and Plunder by Firelock Games, No Peace Beyond the Line.

It was at last years Historicon that I went crazy stupid back at the hotel room, doubling my initial pledge amount after seeing some preview items and the game being played in the main exhibition hall.

I got three new factions, The Dutch, Pirates and Privateers, and European Colonial Militia.

Inside each box contains individual blisters for all the units, along with some doubloons used in the game.

I'm sure when normal retail blisters ship everything will have inserts with descriptions of what each blister is.

I was hoping that the template package was going to be acrylic but unfortunately it's MDF - not sure if I missed the description on the KS or if it wasn't revealed then. I guess we'll see how it looks when it's put together.

I got a boat load of casualty figures as add-ons, as they are some of my favorite types of miniatures. I'd much rather be able to throw down a casualty figure as opposed to simply tipping a figure over on its side to indicate that it's out of play. One of my bags only has 3 figures in it though - not sure if it's even worth contacting Firelock about since it's just one miniature.

And finally the piece de resistance! The Fluyt! This thing is an absolute monster, and it was seeing the prototype last year that had me all excited and frantically upping my initial pledge.

I don't know exactly what kind of resin Firelock uses for their ships but they are absolutely flawless. Resin ships of this size you'd think that there would be all kinds of issues regarding clean-up but there isn't a thing to do except wash it and start the painting process.

Just to give you a bit of scale I threw some of the newly based pirates on the ship. Once built and painted this thing will definitely something to see.

And again, just another scale shot with a figure on the outside. This Kickstarter funded on July 19th 2017, with an estimated delivery of March 2018. So about five months late, not too bad in the world of Kickstarters honestly so I'll give them a grade of a B.

And finally, while I ended up missing Historicon, which was a huge disappointment, I did get to make up a bit of that disappointment by getting to see my beloved Liverpool Football Club during their tour of the US for the International Champions Cup. They absolutely smashed Manchester United 4-1 and did it in front of over 100,000 people at Michigan Stadium. It was just mad. We were right behind the goal in what was deemed the Kop End, so my wife and son finally got to experience seeing Liverpool in person for the first time with Liverpool fans all around them in full voice. She was quite amused by the "Who The F@*k Are Man United" song and was singing along by the third time it was sung, bless her little heart lol!

More Walking Dead survivors on the table currently and also deciding on which building kit to work on next. I can't even remember the last time I actually built an MDF kit and I'm itching to finally start building stuff again.

As always, thanks for looking!