September 25, 2020
When you first watched the “Star Wars” movies as a kid, you probably thought it would be fun to pick up a lightsaber and battle it out with your friends. If you’re like me, you probably broke a few lamps in the process. But in our defense, isn’t a broken lamp or two a worthy sacrifice for the Rebel victory?
If you’d like to reclaim that sci-fi magic with a fun and open community on campus, AZ Saber is the right group for you. Monica Conner is the staff adviser for AZ Saber, one of the club’s founding members, and she works for the College of Integrative Sciences and Arts.
Before founding their club, Conner and her friends were involved with a different saber club in Scottsdale. That club decided they wanted to focus more on the performance aspect of lightsabers. Conner and her friends wanted to play more games and focus on practice combat, and they realized there was no club like that at ASU, so they decided to found their own club in 2016.
AZ Saber usually meets at Palo Verde Beach Park in the grass fields between the Palo Verde West and Palo Verde East residence halls. They start their practices with stretches, then some light sparring (with frequent water breaks because of the heat) and then they move into games such as capture the flag, team elimination and other games typically played on a paintball field but with lightsabers instead. They end practice by getting into a circle, making any announcements for the club and introducing new members to everyone. Because of COVID-19, the group had been meeting online but plans to start meeting in person as of Sept. 14 while keeping ASU health and wellness guidelines top of mind. Check their Facebook page for updates.
Conner says she has gained a new sense of responsibility because of her role in AZ Saber.
“Not only am I a member; I am also one of its leaders, so learning how to lead with others is a skill I learned since founding the group. Another thing, and I think it’s the most important thing, is that I got to meet and make friends with some of the most amazing people from all over, not just campus but all over the country. This club is a unique way to meet people and just have a genuinely fun time.”
Conner says that the plan for the future is to keep growing as a group, not just in members but as a club, by adding new games, new equipment, a bigger field and cultivating a bigger sense of community.
AZ Saber is free and open to all students at ASU. Anyone interested can come join them during any of their practices or sign up through SunDevilSync. AZ Saber can also be reached on their Facebook page.
May the force be with you, my friends!