H.O.P.E Volleyball Summerfest 2013 – Ottawa, Ontario

H.O.P.E Volleyball Summerfest – Ottawa, Ontario

I started off Saturday, July 13, 2013 at Mooney’s Bay (location) where the 31st edition of the H.O.P.E. Volleyball Summerfest gets underway early in the morning. First games on the beach were scheduled to begin at 8AM. Graeme was one of the participants playing in the corporate draw for the Plasco Energy team later in the morning so wouldn’t be taking too many pictures. Visit the H.O.P.E. Volleyball Summerfest website for further information about this event.

I parked by the University and walked over to the event location. A couple of the shuttle buses passed me when I wasn’t at a location where I could flag them down. It was a hot day and by the time that I got to Mooney’s Bay, I certainly wished that I had put my bike on the back of the van before leaving home. Certainly plenty of participants and spectators had arrived by the two-wheel option.

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Graeme’s team was just getting ready for their third game when I found them. They had won one game and lost one game before I arrived and were now getting warmed up for their third game. The sun was shining brightly and the temperature was just below +30C at the beach and keeping the feet moving on the hot sand was a priority as the day progressed.

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On the adjacent bit of real estate, the ladies of the Ottawa Sun team were attracting attention with their fine play while on the sidelines, Ottawa’s mayor was getting a bit more media exposure. Turns out that he and I were following similar routes this particular Saturday since a hour or so later both of us were not far apart in the Kingdom of Osgoode.

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The Plasco Energy team fell behind early in their game but then a  couple of their players had a nice run of successful serving and the team moved into a 12 t0 6 lead, a lead which they never relinquished. It was a fun game to watch. The Plasco Energy team went on to win another game later in the day but, in the end, their final 3 win 2 loss record was not enough to get them to the next level.

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With over 10,000 players representing 1032 teams playing simultaneously on 86 courts on hot sand under a clear sky and blazing sun, more than a few of the participants chose to wander into the water to cool off a bit.

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Various bands were playing on the stage for between-games entertainment. DJ Noah was also present from Live 88.5 kicking out some tunes.

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I wasn’t the only photographer lugging around a big camera.  I’m certain, though, that if I wasn’t heading out to another event, I would have tried standing in the water while taking pictures.  It was definitely a wonderfully warm day for such an event.  Sure beats rain!

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I was soon heading back to my car and, this time, the shuttle and I made a connection and I didn’t have to walk all of the way.

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After visiting the H.O.P.E. Volleyball Summerfest in the morning, I waas off to the Kingdom of Osgoode (location) in the afternoon to photograph their festivities including a hand-fasting wedding and jousting (not the same event :-)).

3rd Quarter 2012- MegapixelTravel’s most popular blogs

3rd Quarter 2012 – MegapixelTravel’s most popular blogs

Top Ranking – For the second quarter in a row the top ranking goes to blogs about the Kingdom of Osgoode. Although the Kingdom of Osgoode blog for 2012 still garnered quite a bit of attention, it was the 2011 live Hand-fasting wedding blog and video combined with the video of knights battling that kept the Kingdom on top.

Near the top (educational)Poison Ivy once again with mermaids a close second along with my review of the North Face Mountain 25 tent.

Near the top (athletics) – We didn’t photograph the 2012 event this year but quite a few people visited our site to view past cycling posts especially the 2011 RLCT post. In the heat of the summer quite a few people must have been thinking Polar Bear Swim as blogs relating to the activity of donning a bathing suit and jumping into ice cold water were very popular during the quarter.

Near the top (International travel) – Graeme traveled to Denmark and Sweden, the Netherlands and Belgium and the blog entries related to those countries were viewed regularly but, as mentioned above, the Mermaids of Copenhagen  got the most notice. When the link to “El Otro Varadero” made it onto the TripAdvisor website, that specific blog, as well as our other Cuba entries, found their spot in the sunshine.

Near the top (North American travel) – Good hiking weather meant lots of people were interested in the Bruce Trail – Lions Head photos as well as the entries for similar hikes around the countryside.

Near the top (Historical) – With the addition to the annual re-enactment of the French and Indian War at Ogdensburg, the Civil War reenactment at Massena and a visit to the 19th century lifestyle of Upper Canada Village, a lot of history was covered but we didn’t attend any of the reenactments specific to the War of 1812 but do have a couple in mind for later in the War.

Back  to the 2nd quarter highlights.

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Upcoming event of particular interest to us is the Annual Live Butterfly Show at Carleton University.

 

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Hand Fasting Wedding at the Mediæval Fair in Osgoode, Ontario – 9th July 2011


Hand Fasting Wedding at the Mediæval Fair in Osgoode

For the third year in a row, Graeme and I have had fun photographing the activities of the Mediæval Fair at Osgoode, Ontario. (Location) This year was a special year for a young couple since it was their wedding day and therefore my photos of today’s activities (July 9th, 2011) show more wedding than jousting and more kissing than dancing. You can view one of the videos that Graeme took of the events by clicking on the above image. (Please note that these photos are copyright so we would appreciate that they be treated accordingly and not be distributed without our permission, etc.) Links to photos of the previous years’ Osgoode activities can be found here.


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Kingdom of Osgoode 2011

Kingdom of Osgoode 2011
Note: Once we have the time to do so, Graeme and Ron Hay will be posting Kingdom of Osgoode 2013 images here: Kingdom of Osgoode 2013 (Saturday and Sunday)

Again we travel back in time (and about 30 minutes south of Ottawa) to the Kingdom of Osgoode and their Annual Medieval Festival. (Location) This year there was a lot going on, from Song and Dance on the Main Stage and Real Live Sword-fighting and Jousting to a Real Hand Fasting Wedding. If all you want is a quick overview of the activities this year I did take video using my new Lumix GH2 camera and have compiled the shots into a short video of the event. To see the video, click on the next image.


So I’m going to start with what really makes this festival such a treat, and that all the people who come out in period clothing, they really make this a special treat.

Of course it is the 21st century and its always a bit of fun to see what creeps into the photos; mainly glasses (people like to see) and water bottles (because sun was out and it was hot outside).

I also had the chance to do some more “pose” type shots of the Steam Pixie from Verdigris grove. They make a lot of fea masks and enchanted looking trinkets. I did play around a bit with this photo using Magic Bullet Looks and Photoshop to try to get that “Steam Punk” look.

Some limited success, I should probably study art styles more. I tried to get this modern day robin hood character to look as menacing as possible.

Well that it for me and Photoshopping for this event… Next Up, Hand to hand combat, Thor demands it!

So the Chivalrous Sword-handling group put on a nice sword fighting display for the festival, it included a couple of live steel fights along with more foam based fights and melee.

This next photo is a crop from the melee, I don’t know about proper form or stance but this just looks cool.

Next some Political Punishment.

Councillor Thompson for the region apparently (willingly) signed up to be placed in the stocks. The mayor of Ottawa (Jim Watson) also showed up to cheer him on and get in on the pelting of wet sponges at the councillor, all in good jest mind you.

I also had the GH2 to take a video of the stockage, so please enjoy.

Of course afterwards Thompson had to throw some wet sponges as well.

Next I’ll cover the on-stage activities…

Mediæval Fair at Osgoode, Ontario – 8-10 July 2011

This upcoming weekend of mediæval festivity should see Graeme or Ron (or both of us) in Osgoode with our ancient weapons of choice (our digital cameras :-)).

To get a feel for what one can expect at the Kingdom of Osgoode, take a look at the many images that we have posted in the following blog entries:

  Osgoode Medieval Fair 2009 (Ron’s accounting of events)

Osgoode Medieval Fair 2009 (Graeme’s accounting of events)

Osgoode Medieval Fair 2010 (Graeme’s accounting of events)
Mediæval Fair – Osgoode 2010 (Ron’s accounting of events)

Mediæval Fair – Osgoode 2011 (one of two blog entries)

The Kingdom of Osgoode official website is here:Kingdom of Osgoode

UPDATE: Another year has passed by and now we have posted our shots from Kingdom of Osgoode 2012.

Season’s Greetings

Season’s Greetings

Starting up a website. www.megapixeltravel.com, with my son, Graeme, was one of the major milestones for the year. Graeme had been prodding me to think about a blog format for my photo postings for quite some time so this was the year that it happened. I like to add text to the photos that I post. Although that works fine on Flickr for single photos, a blog format provides me with a better sense of continuity of thought and sequence of events when uploading a series of photos. In 2011, I intend to continue uploading to Flickr but will likely leave the story-telling here with my blog uploads.

Boxing Day 2010 has arrived with sunny skies and -10C temperatures a far different situation than Boxing Day 2009. Icicles on the Thule.

Rather than seeking out one “best” photos, here are some of the highlights of my year and some of the memories that keep me attached to my camera. Clicking on the thumbnail images in this annual review will take you to a larger version on my Flickr photostream or to the specific blog entry associated with that photo.

New Year's Eve Fireworks - Mont Tremblant, Quebec Photographing fireworks on the ski slopes of Mt. Tremblant in Quebec to end the old year (2009) and start the new year (2010).

With hands out they waited Kanata Badminton Club meeting on Jack Pine Trail Flickr Wakefield outing - March 16, 2010 - Unabridged Yup! Definitely tastes like Introducing complete strangers to the enjoyment of feeding the Chickadees or meeting friends out on Ottawa’s Greenbelt trails and enjoying the company of like-minded souls on outings with Ottawa’s Flickr groups

The creation of a masterpiece - Winterlude ice sculptures - Feb 2010 Crocuses in shock! +27C/81F today! Where there are dreams there is hope. Watching artists at work carving large blocks of ice into masterpieces at Ottawa’s Winterlude and then seeing another Spring arrive and being able to use my camera to help out in a small way at the Lower 9th Ward in New Orleans.

A project of Mairin Peck in Oregon Stonehaven Drive Fire - Kanata, Ontario Helping students achieve their goals and being glad that not all fires take lives.

Last campground site - Obatanga Provincial Park -  Breeding Bird Survey Road to Dubreuilville, Ontario 5AM Awaking many, many mornings at 4:30AM to conduct Breeding Bird Surveys for Environment Canada.

Full Moon - VMC 50th - Vincent Massey Collegiate, Winnipeg (Fort Garry), Manitoba Participating in some of the craziness of my school’s 50th anniversary reunion under the watchful eye of a full moon.

 The group The hosts of the show - Jennifer Podemski and Don Kelly - APTN Aboriginal Day Live! 2010 - Ottawa, Ontario Kinnie Starr - APTN Aboriginal Day Live! - Ottawa, Ontario Inez - APTN Aboriginal Day Live! Grandfather William Commanda, Algonquin Elder, Keeper of the Sacred Wampum Belts readies for greetings and opening ceremonies - APTN Aboriginal Day Live! - Ottawa, Ontario David Usher - Canada Day 2010 - Kanata, Ontario Photographing local events and concerts. I don’t normally take photos of people, so this was a new challenge for me. “Sloan” and “Monkey Junk” at Ottawa’s Westfest; “The Initial Reaction” and “Insensitivity Training” and “The Duck Wife” at Ottawa’s Fringe Festival; “Jennifer Podemski”, “Don Kelly”, “Kinnie Starr”, “Inez”, “Lucie Idlout”, “Digging Roots” and Algonquin elder, Grandfather William Commanda, at the APTN (Aboriginal People’s Television Network) broadcast; “David Usher” and “Elliot Brood” on Canada Day: and “Blue Rodeo” later in the year.

Grand Hall - Museum of Civilization Finally taking my camera to the Museum of Civilization, a much overdue totem pole experience.

Osgoode Medieval Festival 2010 -  Am I missing something?   :-) Taking Aim - Battle of the Thousand Islands 250th Anniversary Commemoration - Fort de la Presentation - Ogdensburg, NY Land Battle  - Battle of the Thousand Islands 250th Anniversary Commemoration - Fort de la Presentation - Ogdensburg, NY From the staircase - Boldt Castle, Heart Island, NY Pump House - Boldt Castle, Heart Island, NY Taking a step back in time at medieval festivals and re-enactments and restored “castles”.

Black and Yellow Argiope Spider Christina and the butterflies Cascade Mountain in the Adirondacks Running out of light! Experiencing the excitement of finding a bug, flower, bird or animal that I haven’t seen or photographed before or successfully testing my recuperated Achilles with a nice mountain climb with my wife, or just enjoying the thrill of another beautiful sunset.

Lion cub out for a morning stroll - Serengeti, Tanzania Lion in the Serengeti Lilac-breasted Roller Licking the lips. Mmm. Good. Of course, spending two weeks in Africa looking at lions, elephants, giraffes and exotic birds with Graeme does have its benefits and plenty of high points.

Photographing lights at night is always a favourite pastime especially when winter approaches and I don’t have to stay up all night to do it!

Shades of Nudity - Sculpture Garden - City Park, New Orleans Alien Communication Device - Canada Day 2010 , Kanata, Ontario And, finally, to finish off this rather long post, there is the enjoyment that I get when wondering what people think when they search on words like “nude men” or “alien communication devices ” and arrive at my on-line offerings :-).

Fireworks - Canada Day 2010 in Kanata Not sure where I will be on New Year’s Eve but, hopefully, I will find more fireworks to photograph where ever I end up being.

Have a Happy New Year everyone!

Mediæval Fair at Osgoode, Ontario – 2010

2010 – Another year has passed by and once again Graeme and I find ourselves visiting Osgoode, Ontario to enjoy the jousting, the archery, the dancing and the costumed folks taking a step back in time to the mediæval days of the Kingdom of Osgoode. For more information about the performers visit their respective websites:
The Kingdom of Osgoode:
The Archery:
The King and his entourage:
The knights and their shining armor:
The Musicians:

 

As in the previous year, there were plenty of different clothing styles and colours to see if you keep your eyes open.

The knights in shining armor are not just there as decorations and participate in some pretty heavy duty and dangerous jousting competitions over the course of the Osgoode event.

For the spectators, there is plenty to see again this year. Music is supplied by the Celtic Sea and dance displays are scheduled throughout the day. Unlike 2009, this year, all of the events are in one locations so walking from one event to the other is much easier.



While the knights in shining armor were preparing for the next jousting contest, I continued to wander around the fair grounds photographing the many scenes.









Back at the jousting grounds, the saddles were still empty but spectators and photographers were beginning to claim their peace of real estate in preparation for the action that was soon to come.

Soon it was time to just sit back and enjoy the action as announcements were made, maidens were honored, some preliminary competitions showing speed, horsemanship and dexterity were out of the way, and then it was on to some heavy duty jousting action.






The jousting poles (lances) were ready. What were we waiting for?

Ah yes, before they lose their heads, each knight must select a young maiden to cheer them on and, of course, it is important to protect that head before trying not to lose it!




LET THE FUN BEGIN!!!

When contact is made, the modern day lance is designed to break in a safer manner. Still makes a great sound when lance hits armor and the splinters and parts fly into the air. Maximum points are scored when the opponent is unseated from his horse. This particular day, both riders scored points for serious contact on their opponent’s chest plate but both riders managed to stay aloft.

It was a hot day, and both knights wasted no time getting out of thier armor at the end of th ematch.

Jousting matches were enjoyed by the spectators who soon turned their attention to the other sport – shopping.

Every good Kingdom and just as in the past year, the Kingdom of Osgoode is no different. Always surrounded by beautiful women. Boy, what a royally tough job 🙂

Lots of good times. Hopefully, my travel plans for 2011 will allow me to visit the Kingdom of Osgoode again.

UPDATE: Another two year have passed by and now we have posted our shots from Kingdom of Osgoode 2012.