Background: Last year the staff of 68Caliber began the process of applying to the state of New Hampshire to have an historic roadside marker erected at or near the location of paintball’s very first game. (See below for links to other articles on this subject).
The process is necessarily a long one; the validity of the request must be checked and verified, the language of on the marker must be approved, funds need to be raised to cover the cost and the entire project must be reviewed for legality (is the subject matter one that falls under the state’s requirements?)
Recently we all learned of the plans by Bob Gurnsey to tour historic paintball sites in New Hampshire, which will be happening in late August, so it is somewhat serendipitous that we learned this morning that the project to erect the marker has taken another step towards completion.
Three things now need to happen (and are scheduled to happen): the facts need to go through their final review (we all know the facts, but now the state has to confirm them for itself); the wording on the marker has to go through its final re-write (with assistance from the state) and the funds to purchase the marker have to be raised (we’ve gotten lots of promises, now we need to start receiving checks: donations will be duly noted on a web page that will be created once the marker has been erected.) If you would like to put your money where your mouth is, now would be the time – contact us here at 68Caliber for details. (Any amount will be appreciated; we need to raise approximately $5,000 – about half will go to the cost of the marker itself, some will be spent on ceremonies surrounding the event and some will be spent to hire a landscaping company to maintain the site for at least a year; we’d also like to actually purchase two signs so that there is a backup handy in the event of vandalism or just plain old wear, weathering and tear. A second marker would take the desired total closer to $7,500. ALL expenditures will be accounted for and any excess will be donated to Bob Gurnsey’s medical expenses.)
68Caliber is hoping that the industry, as well as the players, will step up to the plate. This kind of recognition of the game has an impact that goes far beyond a marker standing by the side of the road – it is a physical representation of the legitimacy of our sport and our industry, while at the same time honoring the pioneers that made it all happen.
It is also just the very first step in achieving greater recognition for the game.
And remember – this is just the first step. Plans for much more are already in the works.