SFO was finally able to award our annual awards to our deserving athletes, in an open-air, social-distance responsible way! It was nice to be able to visit with out fencing families to kick off the 2020-21 season, especially with the nom-noms of Tikka Tomato, and many thanks to Dave Davies Heating and Cooling for sponsoring Tikka Tomato's visit! See pics of the festivities on our photos page.
Coming this Sept to SFO, new classes for a new, COVID-19 reality.
For further information on any of these classes, please see the programs or store portions of the website, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
as announced Jun 24, 2020
As usual, trying to select the outstanding athletes from an intrinsically outstanding group of athletes is difficult. Many of the awards could be shared by multiple athletes. SFO is fortunate to have so many athletes with tremendous passion, attitude and ethic (both in terms of general and work). Robyn and I have always believed that fencing is merely a conduit for making better human beings, full of compassion, passion and a desire to work to a common and personal goal. Each of our athletes share this vision.
Our first set of awards are full the Fencer of Year (male and female). The criteria is our most empirical - cumulative results in international, national and provincial or local tournaments.
Male Fencer of the Year:
Senior: Blake Degroot
Junior: Spencer Orr.
Female Fencer of the Year:
Senior: Ellie Davis
Junior: Ashley Davis
The remaining awards are decided by the coaching staff, and we really wish we could recognize more.
Tradition Mutual Upcoming Talent:
Coaches Choice (Excellence in Training)
Spirit of the Sport (Attitude and Sportpersonship)
Richard Wong Award (Volunteer of the Year)
All training times are running as per usual for the next week. Safety protocols are still in effect for all groups, and again, a big thank-you to the parents/guardians and athletes for working so very carefully within the new protocols.
We are hoping with stage 3 coming for the province, that we will see some combination of the groups and will let you know as soon as this information is released and confirmed with the OFA.
Some of our athletes in the Ontario Fencing Association's Youth Development Program have had the very special experience of Zoom classes with some of the world's top fencers. Thus far they have trained with athletes who have attended 12 Olympics between them, won three medals there (all gold), multiple, multiple world championships and world cups and who are in the top 3 ranking in the world at present. What a great experience for them.
Our sport is truly lucky to have access to such a high calibre of athlete and even better people as human beings, or as our tradition notes ' mensch'.
Darren and Robyn
Earlier we sent a note indicating that we are NOT able to hold day camps under the present Ontario regulations. We hope to do so in August as usual but wait until at least July 15th to see what is allowed for daycamps.
Instead, we are planning to operate our evening and Sunday training in July as usual in lieu of this, with the costs remaining the same as usual operations.
We understand that some have holidays planned, and we ask that you let us know whether to expect you. Given that we missed 2.5 months of training, and more importantly its importance in terms of health and socialization for the athletes, the coaches think this is the best path forward rather than another shut down.
This also allows us to move along in the return to play phases as outlined by the OFA. If all is well, then in September we will have moved through the phases and brought into the new normal of a post Covid-19 world. Again, July will see training as our usual evening and Sunday times with few exceptions.
The following are the planned suspensions of training in July:
The store has been updated to include July regular payment options, including for beginner and minifence classes.
Dear Fencing Family
Well, this is new ground. Please take seriously the social distancing warnings of our medical experts and for the next week, please stay home.
SFO will remain closed until the end of the March Break and monitor the advice of the medical experts and various governmental advise and notes. On Saturday March 21, I will send a note for the next week but at present, we will likely not be operating on the Sunday 22nd, including new classes. The situation changes frequently and rapidly.
In the meanwhile, I am also asking ALL people who have keys to remain out of the club as we have noticed some people using it.
We are not actively sanitizing the club, and the virus can live on surfaces for some period. At present, only the Headcoach should be entering the club unless you tell me otherwise. This may allow us to open in small groups as we can control the environment in the immediate future but if the club becomes a non controlled space, it will remain closed. Please do not spoil it. If you have a key, stay out!
The entry code is now changed, and you will set off the alarm.
Be well, be kind and be unselfish to those whom you come into contact with. This is not an easy time but the values and virtues we inculcate in our sport - respect, value and integrity - will take us a long way.
Congratulations to Blake, Ellie and Spencer for their results at the Ontario Winter Games this past weekend. All placed Bronze in individual foil. Ellie, Spencer anchored/captained their teams to gold in the team relay and Blake anchored/captained to silver. 6 medals in all. Photos here.
Trainings are as usual this with but Tuesday elite starts at 6 pm, and all Saturday footwork classes in March are cancelled.
A few announcements, and reminders:
1. Tuesday Elite training will start at 6 pm, rather than 5 pm due to coaches being unavailable. Otherwise, all trainings are as usual with the exception of Saturday footwork trainings which will resume in April due to a tournament each weekend in March.
2. A reminder of the Toronto International Youth Challenge, the Ontario Provincials and the Vango Young Tigers Cup (Apr 11-12, details to follow on OFA webpage). Please register if you can, supporting tournaments is a real help for our experiences and the sport.
3. This Friday to Sunday is the Ontario Winter Games in Barrie and Orillia, and best wishes to Blake Degroot, Ellie Davies and Spencer Orr for their selection to the games. For most fencers, the Ontario Games are the first truly large scale games leading to the Olympics or the PanAmerican or Canada games. This is a sleep over, large multisport event with opening ceremonies and all kinds of fun. Congratulations to them and their families.
You can follow the games at:
4. Finally, congratulations to Isabella Sabatini who was selected to fence in the PanAmerican Championships in San Salvador this year. Isabella started her fencing here in Stratford before moving to Toronto. SFO wishes her all the best.
Congratulations to SFO alumni: Gareth Marks (Waterloo), Justin Quong (Waterloo) and Ben Laurin (Queen's) for results in the OUA Men's Championships. Marks took the GOLD in men's individual foil, while he and Quong took the BRONZE in men's team foil for the Waterloo Warriors (photos here). Laurin's Queen's Golden Gaels took the overall BRONZE for accrued results in all three weapons. Alumni Siobhan Drysdale competes for the University of Toronto this weekend.
1. Payment for SFO jackets and tshirts is due - and should be done via cheque or cash as we do not have the online store set up for this.
2. All competitive fencers should consider participating in the Toronto International Youth Challenge in March at the CNE grounds in Toronto. It will be a great expereince in a fantastic location. The hotel rate listed expires on 12th February. You will not find a better rate closer to the venue.
All trainings are as normal this week, including elite footwork on Saturday.
Athletes should be thinking of registering for the Toronto International Youth Challenge, details below:
Jackets and Tshirts
The order has been placed. Please make cheques out to Stratford Fencing Club, and the cost is 100$ per jacket and 20$ per t-shirt PLUS HST.
Congratulations to our fencers who participated in tournaments this past weekend:
Foilling Around at Ryerson University
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