This Saturday, I had the pleasure of making it out to two troops in one day. By pleasure, I mean I’m a dumbass who wasn’t paying attention to the event dates and signed up for two troops in one day, luckily they were easy to get from one to another with time to spare so I did them both.

The first troop of the day was the 23rd Annual Chicago Hunger Walk at Montrose Harbor to benefit the Chicago Food Bank. It literally monsooned the night before so the entire park was basically grass covered mud and the air was thick with extremely humid air. Thankfully we were provided with a changing tent, unfortunately it was probably placed on the soggiest spot in the park. My armor was dirty before I got it all on and the folding chair we were provided with liked to sink into the ground when you sat on it.

In all it was a fun experience. Lots of photo ops, even got lots of hugs from kids. We even got to lead the prewalk warm ups and prompted several uses of “may the force be with you” over the PA system. I enjoyed it thoroughly, even though I had an almost disastrous costume “malfunction” with my right thigh armor snaps becoming unglued. Thankfully I was able to get it rigged with some help and suggestions from my fellow troopers, especially costume master Thomas Spanos. (Note to self: figure out what the hell you did with your tape.)

Afterwards, I cleaned off my armor as best I could, packed up, said my goodbyes, and headed back to my neck of the woods for a birthday party. Running a little early, I stopped for bit to rehydrate better and took a nice warm nap in my car.

Refreshed, I headed to the party to meet up with Phyllis for a Clone Wars birthday party for a 4 year old in Homer Glenn, IL. We went over the game plan and headed for the door. Phyllis in her Schph Gochi, Jedi Knight persona and myself in my street clothes and toting my armor crate went over the plans with the father and Phyllis set up while I went upstairs to dress for my entrance.

Phyllis started with the kids, and I came down during their “meditation training”. Basically, the kids were terrified of me to the point they basically refused to play any more. :shrug: What are you going to do? Phyllis was able to coax the kids into playing Hot Thermal Detonator and then some quick pictures with a few kids that worked up the courage to be near me.

Then the kids were herded back outside and I went back upstairs to change and we took off. On the way out Phyllis informed me that the family had given her checks totaling $200 for Make A Wish. I was pretty floored by that. $200 for at most 45 minutes.

Tired, covered in armor bites, and a few cuts, I went home to a cold shower and a nap. It was a good day.

Next weekend: Roadtrip to Trekfest in Riverside, Iowa.

Hunger Walk pictures are available @ http://www.paralada.org/2009/CHW2009/index.htm

Update – I recieved a nice surprise, my picture, in costume, from Aric’s Birthday party was printed in the local Homer Glen paper. Nothing like having your picture in two papers within the span of a week.

Picture from paper