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Billings roleplaying group aims to make sword fighting an affordable escape

Posted at 1:12 PM, Mar 08, 2024

BILLINGS — The Sunz of Odin, a live action role playing (LARP) group, began hosting sword fighting classes this week in association with the the Wild Rose Indoor Action Center at the Vegas Hotel in Billings.

“(We are) teaching people the fundamentals of how to wield a weapon, how to fight, and how to play the general scope of most live action role-playing games that are out there," said Buck Leet-Oglesby, an organizer with the sword fighting class.

To the disappointment of the organizers, no one signed up or showed up for the classes.

"I’ve lived here for 28 years. I know how this city works. Either things blow up immediately or it takes a little bit for things to gain traction," said Leet-Oglesby.

The Sunz of Odin said they hope to bring affordable fun to the Billings community with their hand-crafted armors and weapons.

“Cost of entry should be your willingness to participate … Not two or three hundred dollars for sports gear that you’re going to outgrow in a year – if you’re a child," said Leet-Oglesby.

The LARP group said it is not concerned with what others might think about the imaginative elements of their classes or practices.

“I love being a nerd … you’re too embarrassed to do this. Who’s really the loser here?” said Florindo Mercado, the event coordinator with Sunz of Odin.

The group said its activities are intended as an escape from the weight of reality.

“Everyone seems to have lost their imaginations these days. It’s nice to be able to find it," said Mercado.