NEWS10 – While the coronavirus pandemic has put public gatherings to a halt, many are finding ways to continue their passions, virtually. For the craze of axe throwing, they’re joining in.

Whether it’s Albany or Australia, the Quarantine Axe Throwing League is virtually bringing throwers together from all across the globe.

“We were like okay, let’s try to do something for our Burlington throwers, we can put something together, a bunch of us have targets we can throw and just do this kind of virtual league and next thing we knew, it blew up.”

The QATL started in Canada but with now over 300 members, co-founder Tristan Ledbury says through the use of live social media apps, it’s keeping competition and camaraderie alive. After the World Axe Throwing League spring season got cancelled, it was a way for members to put their home targets to the test.

“We have something called the honor system and first and foremost, you throw and you own it, right?” Ledbury said. “Being able to do this and trusting the person and saying ‘I know you got a bullseye and I’m not going to fight you on this or anything else’ is really nice.

Basement or backyard, throwers set up their own lane and compete in 8 weeks of games, including playoffs. Locally, owners of The Lazy Axe are logging in.

“There’s that connection piece, that’s a piece we’re missing in our everyday lives,” Co-owner of The Lazy Axe, Mark Mirasol said. “To look forward to the four matches I’m going to throw, or the Tournament of the States we’ll do over the weekend, that’s been a lot of fun to sort of see what we can do and where we can take it from our backyards.”

While they’re looking forward to resuming in-person competitions, they say it shows what the axe throwing community is all about.

“For people to be able to do this just for fun, but also be dedicated to doing it, really shows that people enjoy the sport, want to improve, want to get that regular practice in,” Co-owner of The Lazy Axe, Kristyn Muller, said. “To be able to throw with some of the top throwers in the world, virtually, by just opening up your phone and connecting with them, it is a really cool opportunity.”