Let’s go throw hatchets

Yes, it’s a thing (and with leagues!) and you’ll find it at Blades & Boards


Rachel Rowell, along with husband Gabe, opened Blades & Boards on Rib Mountain Drive last month.

Few things feel more primal than throwing a hatchet. You can do it now as a sport or past time, at the newly opened Blades & Boards in Rib Mountain. Play target games, throw competitively in a league, hone your hatchet-throwing skills—you know, that ol’ stuff.

Rachel and Gabe Rowell opened shop two weeks ago at 3109 Rib Mountain Dr. and are excited to show the area what hatchet throwing is all about. They decided to take on this venture because, well, they love to throw hatchets together as a family. “Our son Zach has been throwing hatchets and knives most of his life,” says Rachel.

While hatchet throwing may be new to this area, you’ll find numerous throwing establishments around the country, and the sport is moving this way. “We have visited many but our two favorite ones are in Kansas City and in Chicago,” Rachel says. “This is popular for many reasons, but one is because anyone can do it and it’s a great individual or team based activity.”

Inside the building, which has been decorated in upscale rustic, patrons are positioned at one of 14 throwing lanes separated by chain link fencing. The fencing runs 12 feet up to the ceiling for safety, keeping the ax flying in that specific lane only. Games are played much like darts, with a wooden target and points.

The target boards are replace and the hatchets sharpened whenever needed, Rowell says. But the little axes don’t need to be very sharp to sink into the target. Still, throwing a hatchet takes more finesse than one might think. So Blades & Boards has resident “axperts” on staff who will show ways to throw, give guidelines for safety, and suggest some games to play, Rachel Rowell says. “Anyone can do this, it’s so fun… We have a jukebox and televisions on all the walls.”

The Rowell family decided on the building they found on Rib Mountain Drive because it meets all the regulations required to be a member of the World Ax Throwing Federation. Being part of that organization is important, says Rowell, because it creates community, networking and safety standards.

Cost to throw is $20 per person per hour, which does not include the time working with the axperts. Minors must be with a parent or guardian. Group rates and corporate rates are available. Throwing leagues begin July 10 and run in eight-week cycles. Soda, water and snacks are available for purchase; patrons are welcome to bring in food and non-alcoholic drinks, or have food delivered.

Open Tues.–Thurs. 4-10 pm; Fri. 4-11 pm; Sat. 10 am-11 pm and Sun. noon-6 pm. Call 715-771-9747 or email [email protected].