Bunkers & Banners Paintball Marshals game and Topgun
The day started out with the skies threatening to get us wet,
but there were several players that braved the cool temperatures and grey skies.
And for there willingness to possibly get wet, they were rewarded with an entire
day of fun and sunshine. The temperature never got above seventy degrees and
there was a slight breeze all day. In other words, it was a perfect day for
There are three primary fields at Bunkers & Banners. The
most popular is the Village. The buildings are made almost entirely of slabwood
and resemble old shacks more than the newer urban style of plywood. There are
the typical blue barrels placed about the field as well as some pallet bunkers.
The set dressing is what gives it the "Old West" flavor. There are two buckboard
wagons with some barrels stacked in them, a couple of watering troughs and some
hitching posts. The village itself borders some thin pine trees on one side and
the main road that runs the depth of the field on the other. The field is over
300 feet long and approximately 200 feet wide. There are only thirteen buildings
at this time, but there is plenty of room for expansion. This is where the
Topgun games were played.
The next most popular field is the Back field. It is about 600
feet long and 300 feet wide. It is a typical woods field with a mix of good
sized oaks and pines. Most of the underbrush has been cleared away so there are
some really long firing lanes. The terrain if fairly flat with a lot of ferns
and low weeds. There are numerous man made bunkers on this field, all of which
are made of natural materials that were on the field to begin with. Most are
logs that have been stacked with posts holding them up. The are solid enough to
hide behind, but a good shot might get you through one of the gaps. This is a
great field to play in the summer as there is almost always a slight breeze and
The third field is The Circle of Equals. It is a small
speedball field built in a sand pit. Nobody is fast in the soft sand that makes
up the floor of the field. One nice thing is when you slide behind a bunker, it
doesn't hurt the knees. The field is only 180 feet long by 150 feet wide. The
bunkers are more stacked logs mixed with some barrels. It can be a lot of fun,
but it is still a little rough for a speedball field.
The games had a time limit of twenty minutes, but most didn't
last more than ten minutes, so there was plenty of games for everyone. The
win/loss ratio was fairly even throughout the day on the rec. games and all
players had a good time. The ref. staff did a fine job of keeping things running
smoothly and were right on top of things during the Top gun games.
The format for the day was Center flag as there were only eight
people. Most of the games were played in the village, as was the Top gun event.
There was a good mix of experienced pump players and those that were new to
pump. It made for some well balanced games on all of the fields.
After the first couple of games, the newer players began to get
the hang of playing with pumps and the action intensified as the day progressed.
There were some daring flag pulls that they wouldn't have tried if it had been
an open class game. But, more daring and foolhardy moves are tried with varying
degrees of success during pump play.
The Grand Prize of the event was a beautiful Acid Yellow
Phantom VSC with matching T-Stock and détente rings. This was generously donated
by Mike Cassidy of CCI. I cannot say enough good things about Mike and CCI. He
is a great guy to work with and always has time for his customers. He works
diligently to produce the finest stock class gun on the market and keep this
aspect of the sport alive and well. Thank you, Mike. Prizes were also collected
and donated by Bob Lanstrum of Rocky Mountain Enterprises. To both of these
gentlemen I say thank you very much. It is support like this, at the grass roots
level of the sport, that the smaller fields and events needs.
The Top gun events were limited to four minutes with a draw
being elimination for both players. Needless to say, none of these games went to
time. Although a couple came very close with the longest game being 3:48. The
intensity level of the games was high as everybody wanted the grand prize. I
witnessed play at a level of sportsmanship that I have not seen in a long time
at tournament style events. The players gave it their all with some falling
short for no other reason than a lack of experience. Even with the emotions
running a bit on the high side, there were no temper fits, no name calling and
no complaining about the results. The only thing that would have made it better
is if the field of players had been bigger.
The overall winner was Bill Bartenfelder of the Last Rites
paintball team. He beat Tracy Sill in a game that went to 3:36. It was quite an
experience for the both of them as the young lady was in her first ever pump
game and he was in his first tourney, even though he has been playing for almost
ten years. Some fine shooting took place as the final shot of the tourney was to
the tip of a visor that she had left sticking out around a door frame. For her
efforts, Tracy took home a new Action Markers barrel, two 140 round pods from
Central Ohio paintball, a barrel bag from Splatterpark, a Lapco barrel adapter
from Bunkers & Banners Paintball, an old school telescoping squeegee and
On their way to the finals, both were met with some interesting
and unique challenges. Bill won one game where he and his opponent were just on
opposite sides of an eight foot by eight foot building, shooting through the
doors. The battle at this point raged for nearly a minute with Bill emerging
victorious with a well placed shot to the elbow of his opponent.
Tracy, in her first event, went up against her boyfriend, who
has been playing for over two years. It wasn't a very long lived game, only
about two minutes, with words of encouragement being exchanged. Of course if he
hadn't been talking as much, she might not have shot him. Oh well, life lesson
learned. Her next game came down to a desperate charge from building to building
by her opponent, which resulted in his elimination. But an admirable effort on
To all who braved the clouds of the morning and showed up to
play, I thank you and look forward to seeing you out there again.
All in all, a good time was had by those who showed up. This
promises to be a yearly thing at Bunkers & Banners Paintball. A few words
about Bunkers & Banners. They are a small, rec. ball oriented field. They
have open games every weekend from May through September. There are plans for
expansion and improvement as well as the hosting of an event in a series like
the Old School Challenge. Also, they are a home field for the Northern Michigan
Chapter of the Paintball Marshals Stock Class club and throw pump /stock games
once a month. If you are interested in stock class play, then you might want to
look at the following web sites.
This is the web site for Bunkers & Banners Paintball. They
are located in Prudenville, Michigan on Emery road. http://www.iserv.net/~swampy/main.html
This is the address for the Paintball Marshals main website. http://www.geocities.com/pbmarshals/