Projected (as of 5/31/2014):
• 671 entries
• Morning events: 73 pools of Y12 Men’s Foil, Y14 Men’s Saber (flighted), and Y14 Women’s Epee
• Later in the day: 25 pools of Y10 Men’s Epee and Y12 Women’s Saber (flighted)
• Expected end time: 6:25 pm
The ID number for the gold medal bout of the Youth 12 Women’s Saber was 12525. It wasn’t actually the 12,525th bout fenced, because we’d had to correct errors and reprint pools or DEs a couple of times over our 12 days and the numbers increment each time, but it gives you the general range of the numbers we processed through the whole tournament. We finished at 6:10 pm, 15 minutes ahead of the projection.
With only the 5 smaller events for the last day, I was able to start releasing strips to the armorers by 1:00 pm, and by the time the Youth 12 WS moved into their DEs, the only strips remaining in service were their 4 pods and the B replay pod. The layout in Columbus was especially good for teardown: throughout the day, as we needed fewer and fewer strips, we moved the competitions closer to the BC, heading toward the replay pod and finals strip, so the crews pulling up the strips and carpet weren’t at all in the way of the fencing. Some of the saber girls hadn’t even noticed that most of the hall was down to bare concrete by the time they were done.
Joe and Marc were able to get most of the monitors and monitor stands disassembled and packed before the WS was done, and the rest of the BC staff worked on cleaning up and packing all our gear except what was still being used, so once the fencing was done, it took less than 2 hours to get everything into our 3 big shipping crates.
By the time we were done, we were too wiped out for much celebration. Seven of us decided we’d stop in to see if Barley’s could seat us immediately, and if not, we’d probably opt for room service. Turned out they could, so we sat and stared into space, and realized that after spending the previous days feeling as though we’d always been running fencing competitions inside the GCCC and always would be, we suddenly felt as though it hadn’t happened at all–except that we were so tired. (We were exceedingly grateful the waiter could give us separate checks, too–having to figure out how to split a bill would have been beyond us.)
I miss the big celebratory last-day dinners we used to be able to do with most of the BC staff. They were great debriefing and bonding exercises, where we talked about what went wrong and what went right, what we could try to make better, and told all the newbies tales of fun and horror from past tournaments. Those big dinners weren’t just fun–they were a useful part of building the camaraderie and teamwork essential to running our events. Losing those hurts us.