The Oracle

Throwing axes is a kick-axe experience

The recently opened Lumberjack City offers rustic fun and games.

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A person throws an axe at Lumberjack City

A person throws an axe at Lumberjack City

Alexandra Sego

Alexandra Sego

A person throws an axe at Lumberjack City

Ann Leimbach, Reporter

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At 755 Prior Avenue there’s a small door with a piece of paper in the window indicating the entrance to Lumberjack City. If the door is locked you can call and someone will come let you in. You may want to call them even if the door isn’t locked because you’ll have to walk through a maze of green walls to find it. Despite this, Lumberjack City is worth the trouble of getting there. St. Paul’s newest (and only) recreational axe throwing business, Lumberjack City offers a unique way to spend an hour or two.

I was met at the front door by Lumberjack and Lane Coach Theodore Moulton who led me through the building and into the studio. Upon entering there were two men at one of the courts in the front learning to throw. I took the court next to them, where Moulton taught me how to throw the axe. Despite my small frame it was surprisingly easy as I held it over my head and flung it toward the wooden target. The axe bounced off with a bang and fell to the floor, but after throwing it several times I was able to get it to stick in the target. “It’s mostly about finesse,” Moulton said, explaining that my physical strength had little to do with it.

Though fairly empty at the time I was there, Lumberjack City is designed to host parties. Their website states that they’re great for things like birthdays, stag and doe parties, and even divorce celebrations. They offer chips, candy and non-alcoholic drinks in house, but they encourage parties to bring food from outside or have it delivered. In addition to axe throwing they also offer crosscut sawing competitions with an ongoing leaderboard, as well as Thump The Stump, a game in which a group competes to see who can hammer a nail into a stump first.

Thanks in part to the large windows letting in sunlight, the atmosphere of Lumberjack City is cheery. Each of the targets features a punny slogan like #lumberjacked or #kissmyaxe, “We like puns here,” Lane Coach and Lumberjane Haley Spann said. It’s clear the employees love their jobs here and get along well, I don’t know if I’ve ever met a more friendly group of people. The other employees there, in addition to Moulton and Spann, were Lumberjane and Lane Coach Devon Hunter-Schlichting, and Shawn Hansen who introduced himself as “Yard Master and second best Thump the Stumper.”

As I talked to employees I was invited to play a round of Thump the Stump with them. We passed around a single hammer and one by one we hit our nail into the stump, trying to get it flush against the wood. The group made me feel incredibly comfortable, laughing with me as if I hadn’t met them ten minutes before. I was nervous about going into Lumberjack City alone, but the employees made me feel as if I was surrounded by friends.

I will admit, the prices can be a bit steep for college students. For a group of eight or more you can book lanes in advance for $40 per person, or they take walk-ins for $25 per person per hour. But the price is well worth the unique experience of flinging an axe at a wall. I highly recommend Lumberjack City if you’re looking for something new, or want to hone your inner woodsperson. There’s no pressure to be good, as Moulton said “The whole idea is just to have fun.”

 

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Throwing axes is a kick-axe experience