Whatever It Takes: Tagging in Honor of Doreen

If it weren’t for the pandemic, I was supposed to have been in Denver this past weekend laser tagging in support of the Doreen Katz Memorial Cancer Foundation. Since that couldn’t happen, I decided to support anyway and tag another 5K locally in honor of Doreen. I did it as a progressive 5K, doing a mile (roughly four games) in each of three local arenas so I could still end the day having tagged for this great cause.

Remembering back to when I was leaving LQ Phoenix after the last DKMCF fundraiser on the night of March 15th (heading home right as things were beginning to lock down throughout the United States), I had no idea how the world was about to change. One of the last things I said to Adam Katz that night was that I would be there on October 17th in Denver. I had to settle for figuring out another way to support and be creative in doing so…whatever it takes. So that’s why I decided it would be fitting to donate the amount that I would have paid for my registration, even though the event could not take place at all because the host arena in Colorado is still temporarily closed. I have great empathy for those businesses throughout the country that have still not been able to re-open, but I also am greatly appreciative that several of the laser tag arenas I enjoy playing in New York have just recently re-opened, so I figured this would also be a way for me to show some support to those businesses, both by being a customer and by showcasing a few of the places where laser tag is currently available in central New York.

My day began with a visit to Apex Entertainment in Syracuse and their New York City themed arena inside of Destiny USA. This location re-opened about a week and a half ago, so a return visit was well overdue. I arrived in the early afternoon and was pleased to find that there were groups ready for tag from the time I arrived through the end of my final game and I was able to get in some quality games to start the day.


The first game I considered a warm up and according to my new Fitbit (I did decide to invest in a better tracker and it was well worth it for the improved accuracy and app info) I tagged for .19 of a mile that game. Off and running! However, the second game I forgot to turn the tracker on until midway through the game, so once I remembered it only calculated .16 of a mile. That’s a mistake I won’t make twice, lol. I figured I would just have to make up for it by working harder in the next game, when I was able to tag with a nice size group. Half my attention was on the game, while the other half was on making up for lost steps by circling the arena more than usual and making a deliberate point of going up and down the ramps repeatedly. Apex Syracuse has some serious ramps leading to the half-arena upper level.

The upper level is almost like a balcony with quite a view.


That third game I really earned the .35 of a mile (and I could feel it!) and then I finished another round of “fitness on the ramps” at .36 in a solo format game, so in four games at Apex I got my first mile completed and was already feeling the burn with two arenas left to go!



Next up was a visit to The Fun Warehouse. The groups that were playing there were young beginners, so I was not about to play hard. The last thing I wanted was for anyone to get discouraged because FWH also just re-opened last week and since tag is still a little slow, I want to make sure everyone has a good time (and sticks around) so we can all get some games in. So, to adjust my game play accordingly I just played for accuracy, mostly focusing on the rotating targets, and instead of playing a proper game I mostly just walked through the maze at a brisk pace, feeling a little like Pac Man (or is it the ghosts?) by just tracing a path and only tagging those who happened to cross into my path. This allowed everyone to have a good time AND got me to the second mile goal a lot faster than I expected.


Then it was off to my final arena, Tag 607 in Cortland. This is a smaller arena geared more towards kids, but they use Cybertag equipment which is REALLY unusual and I had only played at this site once before. I was looking forward to tagging with this gear once again because it is such a novelty, so I thought this would be a great place to finish out the night.

I took the top spot as we started a series of games.


It took four games to complete the third mile and change, during which time I realized that I can either tag well by focusing on the game or take a lot of steps while not paying as much attention, but it is very difficult to do both at the same time! Walt’s kids got to hear about my goal and learn a bit about tracking distance and I told one of the kids who tagged all the games with me that they could tell the kids at school that they tagged a mile this weekend…bragging rights for everyone, lol!


I wore my Gameworks t-shirt to represent where I had previously planned to be this weekend, but as my plans actually changed multiple times because of travel restrictions I have to believe I was right where I was supposed to be.


And I was pleased to complete the 5K in honor of Doreen while still finding a way to support the Doreen Katz Memorial Cancer Foundation…whatever it takes.


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Contact: Tivia@tiviachickloveslasertag.com

Websites: www.tiviachickloveslasertag.com and www.photonforever.com

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