Cardboard Wars ready to assist

Photo provided STUDENTS PRACTICE fencing moves. From left are Sam Harris, Natasha Muhametzyanova, Usama Azhar, Abdul Subhan, Anna Mukhlaeva and Tiana Knowlton.

WEST LIBERTY — The West Liberty University History Club will be sponsoring its first Cardboard Wars from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday in the gym located in Blatnik Hall. All students are invited to participate, and can enter individually or in groups of three.

“Part of the intent behind the Cardboard Wars is to show that history is not just something that happened in the past tense, but more so, history is something that we are making right now. We are the active participants in our future which comes from our history,” said Darrin Cox, associate professor of history.

The event was developed as a recycling project to raise awareness for sustainability and a fundraiser for the club which is trying to raise money to assist Puerto Rico relief.

“Students will combat each other in their own handcrafted armor and weapons made from cardboard,” according to Cox, who is an expert in Viking history.

The fighters have to use cardboard weapons to destroy their opponents’ armor and the last person standing wins, he added.

“The object is to get the cardboard armor off the other person. After the battles take place, the cardboard will then be recycled.”

Cardboard Wars include some rules, as follows:

∫ There will be a prefight inspection of all armor and weapons.

∫ Armor shall consist of only cardboard, hot glue, minimal amount of duct tape.

∫ You may only attack with a weapon: no tackling, wrestling, punching.

∫ The last person or team with both armor and a weapon wins the war.

∫ Do unto others as you would have them do unto you (play fair).

Participants are encouraged to get creative when developing their gear.

“Build something that’s probably going to be fastened not necessarily around your shoulders, but more around your waist. It will hold it up better,” said senior Marshall Tallman, who is president of the history club. Tallman is a psychology major from Middlebourne.

Armor inspections will take place the day of the event.

“Like we said in the rules, there’s minimal duct tape use, so maybe creative ways to hold your suit together other than tape is going to be fantastic,” said Devon Kalo, history club vice president who is from Wheeling. Kalo is a junior social studies education major with a minor in medieval history.

WLU has a very active Campus Sustainability Committee and encourages students, employees and the entire community to recycle, get involved in environmental issues, and promote a healthy campus environment.

“The recycling efforts would be efforts to make our world a better place, so what we are trying to do is tap into the sustainability committees’ efforts to increase recycling on campus,” said Cox.

Cox specializes in Late Medieval/Early Modern Europe, Vikings, and gender. He earned his doctorate from Purdue University and master’s degree from West Virginia University. Besides publishing the book Aristocratic Masculinity in France (1450-1550): From Knight to Courtier, Cox also works with WLU volunteer students in his Viking Living History Project. The VLHP brings a hands-on historical reenactment experience to local schools, conferences, and public venues.

“The idea to be able to come out, raise some awareness for a good cause, to have some fun, to mix it up with some people, and have a little competition, I’m really just looking forward to seeing students doing something to try and relieve their stress before finals,” Cox added.

There is an entry fee. For more information on the Cardboard Wars or to register, contact Cox at