2009 After Action Report

AAR

AT THE ARDEN PARK HOTEL
MARCH 27, 28 & 29, 2009

Well perhaps some of us aren’t so thin anymore. But despite economic uncertainty and job insecurities, Hotlead 2009 was another huge success. I was worried that attendance would be down this year, but it held firm. I think more came just for the Saturday rather than the entire weekend, but it balanced out. The Bring and Buy was hugely successful again. Rick, Joe, Paul and Anna did sterling work managing the frenzied activity. They
were threatened with being overrun by eager bargain hunters, so I had to redeploy Peter and Barry to help out. Many thanks to those who also made out of pocket donations or left things for Hotlead to sell and donate the entire price to the charity fund. Some really nice Foundry Pygmies were left behind last year and their owner kindly donated them. He only wanted $10 for the unit (which was far too little), so we raffled them off among our group over the summer and raised $85. Dan Hutter won the draw and those same Pygmies put in an appearance in his Saturday evening Darkest Africa game.

This year we’re once again able to donate $500 to the Canadian Forces Personnel Assistance Fund and $500 to the Canadian Forces Hospital Comforts Fund. The gaming was also packed with 44 participation games, 4 DBA tournaments and one Warhammer 40K tournament. Every table was busy on Saturday afternoon and we had a nice crowd Friday night and Saturday night too. Once again we had every scale, period and genre of miniature wargame represented; air combat from both WW1 and WW2. There was naval action in the Cold War. A 54mm ACW skirmish and at the other
extreme a 6mm SF Battletech game. Alexander’s phalanxes continue their invasion of the Persian Empire, with last year’s Battle of the Granikos being followed up by the Battle of the Issus this year. The Seven Year’s War had a couple of nice looking 25mm games and the Napoleonic Wars had 4 good looking games in 15 and 20mm. The Second World War seemed to be the overall most popular period once again. The Warhammer 40K tournament was well attended with approximately 16 enthusiasts fighting over some very attractive club built terrain. The DBA tournaments proved popular again, with a mix of themed, open and campaign events. It looks like Colin Rice was the overall winner with David May and Stephen Lindsey tying for a very close second place. 

Sunday morning’s Colonial Bring and Battle took on a VSF theme this year with the Hotlead gang fighting another epic battle in the ongoing Great War of 1895. Of course hostilities have expanded and Russia is sending its legions to invade India. The gang rather like VSF, and it’s good silly fun for a Sunday morning, so start working on your own steam -powered machines of destruction for next year! Each year also brings requests from gamers looking to make contact with other gamers in their area, so I’ll direct those interested to a Yahoo group I know of: Ontario Wargamers

To further the social networking Hotlead also has a dedicated Facebook group. I can’t say how busy it will be in between conventions but it’s there if you want to make contacts. 

We’ve set the dates for Hotlead 2010 and reserved the room at the Arden Park again. Mark your calendars for March 26, 27 and 28, 2010. See you then. 

In the meantime, Good Gaming!

James