Many people ask me, "Is it hard to learn to shoot left handed after my accident?". My accident happened Sept. 30, 1997, were I lost my 4 fingers on my right hand. I've been playing paintball since 1987.
Simple answer is, I always shot with both hands, and you should too. When you come around a bunker on the right side, your marker should be in your right hand, also if you come around a bunker or building on your left side, switch your marker to the left hand. You produce a much smaller target. Also learn to tuck your elbow in too.
I shoulder my marker left or right depending on the situation, which does reduce my profile, best that I can now. The more you practice with both hand, the better you are going to be.
Simple advise, but it will improve your game. You should target shoot on the range with your off hand too.
I did a little scanning of some old aerial photographs of the farm / Paintball Paradise. I few things stand out, like the house, big barn, granaries or bins, and how lush the bush is. The first year of the corn maze was 2013, and we wrote "Paintball Paradise" in the maze as the path. I had a helicopter over fly the farm with me taking pictures, (very cool), but the windows are bubbles, and not flat, so you get some the the reflection and curves in the 2013 pictures. You can see in the background how much water is surrounding the Big Barn on 2 sides, and maybe a bit of the 3rd. The fall was really dry in the corn, and there is still that much water by the Barn. The corn maze was only 2 acres, now it's 4 acres.
2013 looks very wet, and the water was right up to the edge of the Speedball Field, and had flooded over it a bit, so a sandbag and earth blocks were started to be put into place. No 3 steel bins on the bin field, so there were moved at this point. Yellow house is easy to spot, and the Big Barn is getting surrounded by water. the Big Field was no able to be used by the Big Barn at this point anymore. You can see the small bunkers in the on the Small Field, and no roof on the cattle shed. And not much for trees north of the Bin Field. The Spruce trees there are now 10' tall, maybe 3' tall. Solar panels now show up on the right.
From 2008 below.
2008 has an awesome shot from the east, looking west. It highlights the old castle walled Speedball (enhanced with some inflatable bunkers), cool looking Bin Field (pre-Castle), and a nice shot of the Small Field (roof still on cattle shed), that has since been over grown with more and larger trees. The Big Barn has a green tin roof, and easy to spot the yellow house. Three steel bins too, and the wooden bins are looking more grey with the millions of paintballs shot. I really like this picture in the fall, with some nice fall colours of yellow, and beautiful swath patterns in the field of canola, and the water is receding alot. In 2014, the water expands so much that if we didn't build a dike along the speedball fields edge, 1/2 the Bin field would be under water, and the Speedball field was completely flooded for 4 years. We just replanted the grass on the old Speedball field in 2019, with the water down about 3 feet in depth. The water rose 4 feet in 2014. That';s a lot of water. Next up is a cool winter shot in 2002.
2002 has no green tin roof on the Big Barn. Yellow house is easy to see. This shot is looking north from the south. The Speedball field was made of round bales on the right, which I think make the best bunkers, no mess, no cleaning, and no rub of the bunkers. Plus it was always fun to watch players chasing each other around the bales. You can see small wooded bunkers on the Small Field on the bottom right, and small wooden bunkers in the Big Field behind the house, and the stack of tires along the north ridge of the Big Field. The wooden Bins look red still, they slowly fade to grey with the paintball shots over the years. Next up is 1997.
1997, this shot in the fall was the last year that I ran a combine of the fields, it was the fall that I lost my fingers on my right hand in a combine accident. I suspect this picture was take just days before my accident. Yellow house is easy to see. Only 1 steel bin. The front extra parking area is full of equipment for the farm. Looks like most of the garden has been harvested. The willows planted just 3 years before, around the water field look to be 10 feet tall already. Most of the sloughs look fairly dry. Next up is 1980.
1980, so this is a black and white photo (there are some white scratches on the left side), that has been hand painted for colour. the color photos of the 1970's would fade really badly, so in some cases the old buildings are just left nature black and white. The grain bins were painted red later, but never with one trim. Mom always liked to have sunflowers at the end of the garden, and show up nicely in this picture. Dad was still alive and ran the farm with Mom. Dad passed away in 1982 (aged 55), so we brothers all became farmers after that. There was much more bush then, as Dad knocked down a lot of trees (10 acres) in 1981, west side of the Big Field and east side of the Small Field. This is from before we even knew about paintball. Yellow house, Big Barn (no water anywhere near it), No Hut Bin, and the Round wooden bins are both still standing. Likley the HQ was full of chickens, as it was a Chicken Coupe then. The HQ was the original Lewko Homestead cabin (2 adults and 4 children) when they first arrived in 1939. Uncle Bob was born in the barn in 1941.
We are getting ready for a wonderful 2nd Annual Pumpkin Music Festival. Includes with admission all of the below:
Other things to do
Thanks to Ruby Busse for these excellent pictures from the 2018 Pumpkin Music Festival.
Our 25th Anniversary celebration is coming up fast, on Aug. 17-18, 2019. Hard to believe we have been running paintball games here for far longer than that.
Registration for the 25th Anniversary is found at http://pppa.classquest.com/pppa.classquest.com/
The reunion weekend is Sat. Aug. 17, with old time semi (less than 7 b.p.s.) in the afternoon, and a BBQ supper in the evening. Lots of stories to be shared around the firepit. Sunday Aug. 18 will be old time pump, pistol or magfed. Everyone is welcome, but you need to register.
When we started paintball was the only thing we were trying to do. We started PPPA with Paintball (1994), Laser Tag (2012), Photovoltaic "Solar" Array (2012), Corn Maze (2013), Pumpkin Patch (2013), Haunted House (2016), Fairy Tale Trail "Jack and the Cornstalk" (2017) and Pumpkin Music Festival (2018). You kind of never know which way things will go. Now our October's are are busiest time, and nothing to do with paintball, it's Haunt time.
Before we plant our pumpkins, we lay down black poly mulch, with drip line. The black poly warms up the soil enough to speed up harvest by 2-3 weeks, and it also improves weed control dramatically (reduces labour by over 90%), and the drip line improves water use efficiency by more than 75% reduction in irrigation water.
Seeding our pumpkins is next, with over 17 varieties, which are large to very small, orange, white, yellow, combos, bumpy or warted, and gourds too. We love our Darlings, a small upright pumpkin, great for small jacko lanterns or in pies.
It takes lots of help and co-ordination to plant nearly 3,000 pumpkin seeds on 1/2 acre of land.
This years corn maze will surround the pumpkin patch. Very cool.
We have some very exciting news, on Saturday May 25, 2019 between 9:00pm-11:45 pm, we will be hosting a Paintball Zombie Shoot Ride. Tickets are $30 each, but if you buy them in advance they are $20 each. The ticket will get you a ride on our Zombie Hunting Trailers Ride and 100 paintballs to shoot at our horde of Zombies that are infesting our Paintball field. An extra 100 paintballs can be purchased during the ride for only $10.
We are limited to 120 spots only. 10 shooters per ride, and there are 4 rides per hour (so every 15 minutes). It's extremely addicting to shoot Zombies, and the flash of the glow paintballs under our black lights is intense.
Pick May 25, 2019 on our Vantora Reservation system, and available times will pop up for your group size. We do expect to sell out quickly.
If you can't get in for a time slot, we will have walk-ons after Midnight for a hour, but that will be $30 each.
We will have our usual firepit, canteen with popcorn, hot chocolate, cold drinks and snacks, and our hot kitchen with burgers, hot dogs, fries, poutine and such.
We have been working hard to improve our parking in a very limited space. We have found 4-5 additional spots in the yard (we have around 10-12 spots if everyone parks straight and behind each other, but it's not easy), by clearing back some small brush, and moving a few things around. It's nose in parking along the driveway.
April 18, 2019 - We had a wonderful time at the Prince Albert and District Chamber of Commerce 29th Annual Samuel McLeod Business Award banquet.
There is a good article on the P.A. Herald website called "Northern Lights Casino takes top honours at Samuel McLeod Business Awards" . It gives a great summary of the evening, with a quote from just about all the award winners. Great job Prince Albert Daily Herald!
The Prince Albert and District Chamber of Commerce is all about promoting local businesses, partnerships and great networking, if you are local and not a member, join up!
There was a recent article in www.panow.com by Nigel Maxwell, "P.A. businessman remembers close encounter with combine". This article is about my accident Sept. 30, 1997, which ultimately left me with no fingers on my right hand, only the thumb came through.
I've never had an issue telling anyone about my accident. Some folks tell their children not to ask, but it's been a long time since the accident, and I'm fine helping anyone understand the dangers of farming and farm safety. Maybe it will help save some one in the future.
One day I'll write the entire story out of my accident, well I already did years ago, but I'm not quite ready to share that yet. Likely it will include growing up in and around Prince Albert and my life story so far. Dad dying young at 55 years old (when I was 15 years old). Tough farm women that carry on. Story of the farm and agriculture, which shaped so much of my life. The College of Agriculture at the University of Saskatchewan, were I met so many of my colleagues and friends. Becoming a Professional Agrologist and eventually becoming a Forensic Agrologist (an scientist that documents spray drift and unusual damage to crops and other Ag related crops) .
We did all the normal crazy kid stuff, except if we broke it, we had to fix it. We never had money to buy new items, so have fun, but don't break it. Might have to change the names to protect the guilty parties, but everyone has those stories, like bumper dragging off the old pickup, throwing water balloons on those warm June days after school, tubing at the "Red" (Little Red River Park), having a few tasty beverages around the firepit. Those standard things we all did, but to people from around the world, and maybe not too far from our backyard, these things are almost exotic, and quite fascinating. So I've been collect stories of youth, fun, ag, paintball, travel and high adventure. The story of my love, my wife and why I love Kathie. I think it will be therapeutic and maybe of interest to others so long as my story telling keeps the audience enthralled.
George Lewko PAg, is a Professional Agrologist, with a certificate in Forensic Agrology. He grew up on his farm, and started Paintball Paradise Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1994. A combine accident left him with only his thumb on his right hand in 1997.