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Thursday, April 30, 2015

New archery tag location in Vaughan

Archery is soaring in popularity, propelled by the Hunger Games film series with its bow-toting heroine and hit TV shows "Game of Thrones" and "Arrow" in which bows feature prominently as the weapon of choice.

Now three Markham entrepreneurs are aiming to capitalize on growing interest in the sport and they’re pretty confident they’ve hit the bull’s eye with a new 10,000-square-foot archery tag facility in Vaughan.

“We believe this is going to be a blast for people who live around this area,” said Shawn Huang, who along with partners Kent Chung and Kevin Park officially opened their facility dubbed The Archery Game on Saturday.

“We’re going to target corporate events, birthday events and other private events. It’s great for team building because it’s really simple game, but it involves a lot of strategy if you want to be serious about it,” he added.

Developed in the United States, archery tag pits two teams against each other in a dodgeball-type battle. But instead of balls, players try to take each other out with custom-made, foam tipped arrows that “feel like a birthday punch” when they hit you, Huang says.

“It’s not like paintball where you get bruised and two days after it hurts all over your body,” he said.

The official version of the game is played by two teams with five players each, but it can be played with teams consisting of as few as four players or as many as 10.

“It’s actually a really good workout as well,” Huang said. “You’re running around. You’re going up and down. It’s agility and upper body strength, so you burn tons of calories.”

The Archery Game is located at 2501 Rutherford Rd. unit 18, directly behind Reptilia.

Chung says they were fortunate to find a space in the heart of what could be considered Vaughan’s entertainment district, which boasts Canada’s Wonderland, Legoland Discovery Centre, Sky Zone indoor trampoline park, WEGZ stadium bar and Reptilia all within a few blocks.

‘It’s not like paintball where you get bruised and two days after it hurts all over your body’

“We were lucky to actually get a location here where all the fun is,” he said. “There’s a lot of energy here.”

Archery tag has caught fire in the United States, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and British Columbia, but it’s just starting to take flight in Ontario, Chung said.

Vaughan is the second community in the GTA to host an archery tag facility. Toronto was first with The Archery District, which opened in Scarborough back in January.

“The reason we picked Vaughan is that we don’t really want to just focus on the Asian community,” Huang said. “A lot of Asians, know about this game, but there’s still a lot of people who don’t know about it. I’m sure because of the Hunger Games hype, people will want to try it and Vaughan is a very diverse place.”

And, Chung noted, they’re taking steps to set themselves apart from the competition.

“We do variations on the official game, we also invented a few of our own really unique creations,” he said.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Texas Veterinarian kills Cat with Arrow

There is a difference between bowhunting and animal cruelty. The veterinarian in the photo to the right apparently doesn't know the difference. Kristen Lindsey was practicing archery in her backyard, saw a stray cat (someone's lost pet) and decided to shoot it with an arrow.

First off, that is not hunting. That is randomly killing animals for the sheer pleasure of it, which qualifies as animal cruelty.

It is also not hunting because she had no plans to eat the cat, and the cat was not a predator killing her livestock (as is sometimes the case with wolves or similar predators killing a farmer's livestock).

She then took it a step further by having her friends take photos of her and then post it on Facebook, to show off to her friends that she had been "hunting".

But as stated before, she was obviously not hunting for food and she was not hunting dangerous predators - which means she was just randomly killing a stray cat.

Kristen Lindsey claims the cat was feral, but that is still no reason to randomly kill a stray cat. She did it for her own personal pleasure of killing animals - which is an odd thing for a veterinarian to be doing. She must really hate cats for some reason.

"The only good feral tomcat is one with an arrow through it's head!"

Yup, really hates tomcats apparently.

Since then another video has surfaced from Texas showing the same cat (whose name is Tiger) in question riding on the front hood of a John Deere Gator farm utility vehicle (it is basically a golf cart painted green, repurposed for farm use).

So evidently what happened was one of Kristen Lindsey's neighbour's cats went for a stroll one day, wandered off her owner's property and was passing through Kristen Lindsey's backyard. Kristen Lindsey saw the cat, and thought it would be funny to shoot it.

Since then Kristen has been fired from her veterinarian job, there is an online petition to have her veterinarian's licence revoked, and police have been pondering charges of animal cruelty.

Her former employers posted this on their website:

"We are absolutely appalled, shocked, upset, and disgusted by the conduct. We do not allow such conduct and we condemn it in the strongest possible manner… Please know that when informed of this we responded swiftly and appropriately and please do not impute this awful conduct to the Washington Animal Clinic or any of its personnel."

The Texas Veterinary Medical Association and Colorado State University, where Lindsey earned her doctorate, have also condemned the act of animal cruelty.

"If this did occur, it's a criminal act," says Austin County Sheriff Jack Brandes, noting that a charge of cruelty to a non-livestock animal is a class A misdemeanour under the Texas penal code. Three investigators were assigned to the case. "It's disgusting and very alarming," he continued. "Yet our job is to investigate, then present a case to the district attorney. People are concerned, but we can't convict someone of a crime based on a picture on Facebook."

Since then no charges have been laid, which is unfortunately the status quo with animal cruelty cases. Most times charges don't even get made and the person committing the act gets away with it.

While we can take solace that Kristen Lindsey was fired from her job - and likely will never work again as a vet because who would take their pets to someone who enjoys shooting pets for fun? - it does show the sad state of affairs in which animal cruelty felons gets a free ride often because the police cannot find enough evidence that the act took place.

See the following Huffington Post article if you want to read more about animal cruelty and how the felons often get away with it.

Cat Cruelty Goes Viral Online and Nowhere in the Courts