Caleb loves his cousins and he also loves birthday parties so when he heard that Bryce was having a party at Conder's he was all in. Bryce comes from a family of paintball players; Dad, big bro Michael and big bro Jonathan all play and now he's at a good age to dive in to the field and get marked up. Bryce had a good crowd of friends and a couple of their dads played too. We had about 14 ballers on the field today.
When we arrived Caleb was feeling a little overwhelmed, because he didn't know what to expect and he had a grim impression that getting shot was going to hurt beyond anything he could bare. While signing up for our gear he was in tears even considering the idea of wearing a mask and watching others play. He took a break and hung out at the shop with his cousins Shelby, Aubrey, Allison and Aunt Beth while Daddy and the boys had some fun on the field. Conditions were a little muddy since we were hit with a huge snowfall followed by a couple inches of rainfall over the past week and a half, but that didn't stop us.
We first played on the plastic field where it was men verses boys and the boys were crushed instantly. We then let a couple of young captains pick teams and we took to the plastic course again. This time my team lost and I was hit near the middle of the field while Michael was defending the rear getting rushed from all angles. He was a goner! Then we moved to the AstroTurf airball field which has inflatable barriers that provide cover during the battle. We played two 7 vs 7 games before switching to a 3 v 3 game. These games were quick as that is the normal tempo of an airball match. Then we headed to the fort in the woods that is like a defensive game where a team in the woods tries to charge the fort and take everyone in it down. My attempt to get in the fort was unsuccessful and when our team guarded the base we kept it secured. These games were a little longer since shooting the rental gun's .50 caliber balls broke as soon as they grazed the brush so we had to wait until the enemy was in closer proximity for the ammo to be effective. Check out the awesome footage I recorded with my HTC Re camera strapped to the side of my mask.
After the woods, we took a food break and that's when I convinced Caleb to come with me to watch me target practice. I wanted him to see how much fun paintball was and I knew that when we were down there he wouldn't be able to resist. As we walked down he made it clear he was only coming to watch me shoot and he was going to stand at a distance from me so he wouldn't be scared.
I was right!
He got closer and closer and finally, I asked him to shoot the targets and he blew through the hopper of balls in a flash. He even begged for more paint balls so he could shoot more targets. When we were finished he ran up the hill to tell his Aunt Beth he shot his paintball gun at the targets. Watch this story unfold below.
Conder's Paintball has been very good to this family over the years and we will continue to bring our kids here for many more to come. Stop by their website and be sure to let me know when you want to spend a day out in the woods acting like a bunch of Army Men, because I'd love to join you!