So, I retired from Cornhole altogether pretty much, less my Tuesday night league. I gave up my side gig building boards and gave up Cornhole Addicts due to the realization I wasn’t addicted any longer. I was at my prime during the Championship of Bags in Valley Forge. Being 10 minutes from where I grew up, catching up with local friends, meeting those I’ve met in my travels to Texas and South Carolina on the company dime, and representing Cornhole Addicts. I met some new friends and tied one on with a lot of new people. Unfortunately, didn’t play well, and left hating the game. But if you don’t leave an event after a poor performance pissed off, then you aren’t going to get any better. But the highlight was watching my brother, Chipper, play on ESPN with my parents in the stands.
Shortly after, I came to grips with my day to day life, I lost the love for cornhole. More the less I found my family needed me more that a 12-hour day at a cornhole event coming home empty handed. So, I gave up the extra hours of practice, and the endless tournaments of coming home with just out of the money (on my good days). I decided to spend more time with the family. It’s been awesome, yes I miss showing up at 8:15ish for an event that starts at 1 PM and staying until the last person cleans up at 8 PM. I miss the people I’ve become friends with during my time in cornhole. But I’ve needed a break, and COVID gave it to me.
Maybe I will build boards again…..
Fast forward to the corporate email about pay cuts. Yup I’ll start building boards again. I mean I can’t play a tourney and I’m at my house so what is there to complain about? Well a lot. I have two beautiful daughters who yearn for my attention when I’m around, and a wonderful wife who puts up with all my shenanigans. Shit, the oldest won’t leave me alone while trying to write this article at 10:30 PM. Looking for my attention and I’ve realized I’ve missed that in my cornhole journey. I’ve let my wife deal with all the day to day stuff and then said I’m out on Saturdays as a whole. Saturdays are for the Boys! When I played golf, I was home by 12:000, but not in the mood for anything. Learned that we need to play golf on Saturdays and Sundays. We tee off at 6:15 and then we nap, leave us alone. Well that doesn’t’ work nowadays. You can buy a brand new driver for the cost of 4 bags right now, and get it within 3 days. That is nuts.
Back on topic, sorry I rant.
Everyone has been begging for live events with real people. Yeah, the virtual stuff was great for most and they got a taste of competition. But, what does that do for your go to tournament director and board builder? Left most finding things to do at home without our pants on.
Following your local and state guidelines is tough, every state and town is different. Some towns are getting sued by the state due their “I don’t’ care anymore” attitudes. Is it right? Who knows at this point? Most leagues are played at private clubs like your Elks Lodge, Moose Lodge, or other private clubs. Those “clubs” don’t fall under the early part of the state guidelines. Yes, they have a Liquor License, and abide by all the state laws, but they are different. Flip page 30 over and there is the guidelines for them. Support them when they open, go have a beer and leave a $5 tip.
Cornhole board sales have been low for the most part, up until the Stimulus Checks kicked in. I mean how much more fun can you have at your house by yourself with your pants on?
Father’s Day is approaching and all the board builders across the country have put out statements a month ago saying we can’t deliver by Father’s Day. But of course, the week of Father’s Day we all get messages, “Hey I need a set for Father’s Day”. I wish all the fathers out there the best. Mine has already been the best I can remember, just because I’ve had the luxury of staying home the past 5 months!
So, what is the aftermath of COVID-19 and cornhole?
Nationally we’ve already seen the first sport to do a live broadcast has been the ACL and Cornhole. While no fans present, they have beat out all the major sports in going live. Golf has followed, baseball doesn’t’ want to play for 80% of their salary for 20% of the games, which is 700% more than an average fan makes a year.
Locally, you are screwed. You will see a bunch of pop up events for low payout on shit boards, yup Bring your own bags but watch out for my screw holes. Those who have been in the game for years and have invested time and money in this game before it blew up are going to want more money to run or play in their events. Is it fair, maybe so but maybe not? Is it because they lost all the income with the virus? Not at all. Most have realized that time with their family versus 12 hours of cornhole to split $300 4 ways and take a beating from experienced players asking the same questions each tournament is not worth it. Do I love being under the stress of getting an event going that had 12 registered teams and 40 teams show up? You bet I do. But for less than minimum wage is it worth it?
I foresee your experienced directors raising their prices. And people won’t be happy. They will bitch and complain because that is what we humans do. But most will show up and play. But guaranteed they will have a good time.
Long story short, I like my couch and Disney+ with two kids under 10 more than I do listening to you tell me you won that game 4 rounds ago and shouldn’t be in the losers bracket. Instructions are easy, winning team come to the scorers table and report who won. Come on Brower, every event……
Stay confident in your game and keep practicing. Support your local director.
If you are in the market for boards, since Dickey is retired (again) check out our Professional grade tournament ready boards