BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — Cold weather is starting to set in across North Dakota — but fortunately, it’s not cold enough yet to stop enthusiasts of a certain unique sport from taking the field. We paid a visit to Baldwin’s Legacy Field to learn more about the sport of Airsoft, and the many benefits it brings to participants.
When some people think of sports, baseball, football, or soccer may be some of the first that come to mind — but Airsoft is a unique and entertaining variant of outdoor play. The game functions as a low-impact, more realistic version of paintball, where teams seek to defend key zones and shoot opponents with plastic BB gun pellets while avoiding being hit themselves. Airsoft can be played with teams or in small groups, and is especially safe due to the amount of protection — including eye protection, masks, boots, and uniforms — that players are required to don before heading to the battlefield.
Legacy Field, located in Baldwin, was first created 6 years ago with the purpose of creating a permanent place for Airsofters to play in North Dakota. Owner Darin Davenport currently opens the location every other weekend, and notes that all sorts of individuals come through to participate — from young initiates to older die-hard fans.
“Airsoft is a recreational sport,” Davenport states. “A lot of older guys like to get into it, a lot of younger guys get into it. It tends to be a hobby full of Passionists, where they really get into it for a lifelong journey.”
Shane Woodworth, who has been playing airsoft since he turned sixteen, comes out to play often — not only for his love of the game, but also for the sense of community among players. Many players state that participating in an Airsoft group can also help players with strategy and critical thinking, exercise, and of course, forming friendships.
“The best part about airsoft,” Woodworth explains, “I honestly just wanna say is the community. I’ve made a bunch of friends out here. I talk to everybody like we’re best friends, even though I’ve only seen them once or twice out here. It’s exhilarating, just like playing basketball or any other fast sport — and we spend a bunch of money doing so.”
Those who want to try airsoft are encouraged to look up videos to become familiar with the sport, as well as purchase basic gear before playing.
“Amazon is a great spot,” explains Airsoft player Connor Davies. “That’s where I started out. You can find all kinds of guns, equipment, camo stuff, and things like that. Walmart is good too, and any sporting goods store will have all types of guns and ammo. You don’t have to spend too much money to start out, and you can still have a lot of fun.”
Those who are interested are welcome to attend a game at Legacy Field without any need for prior experience or registration. The next event is scheduled for Sunday, October 29, at 9:00 a.m. For more information about Legacy Field or their Airsoft league, visit this page.