2010 State of Amtgard Report
Each year for the last three we have reported an upswing in growth. In 2009, 72 chapters where founded, the greatest number known to have been created in a single year in the history of our game. And even with all that growth we only lost 13 chapters, less than half the number that usually go defunct each year. At the time of writing there are 297 active chapters known active chapters playing Amtgard in five countries, 263 of which are using the Online Record Keeper.
As of September 19th, 2010 we’ve gained a new Kingdom, Tal Dagore, centered around St. Louis, Missouri. TD is the 14th active kingdom and the 17th to have ever been formed. The Circle of Monarchs voted to approve their status at this year’s Gathering of the Clans. We have also welcomed two new Principality like groups: The Confederacy of Dreadmoor in Oklahoma, under the Emerald Hills; and the Northern Empire in Canada, under Goldenvale. This makes the third principality to have been formed outside of the United States; the others were the now defunct principalities of Kevland in Finland under BL, and Silver Oak in Germany under CK.
This year we might not have grown as much, but I’m beginning to think that the perceived downturn is because we are running out of room more than anything. This year we gained 38 known chapters; and there may have been more that. The states that came out winners this year, Texas and Missouri with four new groups each. Texas is almost always near the top when it comes to gaining new groups, but this is Missouri’s first burst of growth; the likely result of the new Kingdom in the area. The Texas groups are doing well too, with the notable addition on of the Shire of Kayembridge, located in Waco. It is founded on the ashes of the Borderlands, a former principality in the area under EH and could have been a test of the kingdom boundaries rules, which were added to the rulebook. But all three Kingdoms in range of the chapter agreed to their sponsorship under the CK. Thus lands that were traditionally EH’s are now under the Celestial Kingdom.
Other notable growth spurts have occurred in Alaska and around North Dakota. Alaska gained two new chapters this year, in Anchorage and Fairbanks, around the already established chapter of Astral Winds, which is under Dragonspine. For such a frozen land they sure do swing a lot of stick. Also around the Chapter of Land’s End in North Dakota, three new chapters have formed: Sanzu River, in Vermillion, SD; and Land’s End East in Bemidji, MN; And Land’s End South in Fago, ND. Together with this established chapter of Niflheim in Warroad, MN they a paving the way to a group of unified chapters that stretch to the Canadian border.
Groups to keep your eye on
There are a number of Groups that plan to make a push for Kingdom Status in the next few years. In Washington State, the Principality of Northern Lights has formed a tight knit group of chapters, which work together and have a strong sense of national pride. They hope to petition the CoM for status soon.
Under Dragonspine the Principality of Westmarch, founded in California in 2007, has chapters from Berkeley to San Diego. They hold Feast of Mars every year, and have welcomed two new chapters recently.
The Principality of Winter’s Edge, under Neverwinter has been an established and working group for nearly ten years, with chapters in with nine chapters all over Tennessee and groups in Alabama and Georgia.
Edited to add: I neglected to mention that The Northern Empire under Goldenvale announce their attention to seek Kingdom status at Clan this year. If created they would be the first Amtgard Kingdom out side of the US. They have operated as a large group for sometime now, holding several signature events including Battle of the Dens.
There have been, in the history of Amtgard 566 people inducted into the peerage. Between them, they have received 796 belts; 178 Crown, 314 Flame, 193 Serpent, and 111 Sword. This year 23 players received knighthoods; down from 40 players last year. Of the belts received; 8 were Crown, 9 Flame, 4 Serpent, and 3 Sword. 17 of the belts were firsts, that is given to people who had never been knighted before. Four of those given where second belts, and two were thirds. There were no four belted knights created this year.
The Wetlands didn’t knight the most people, contrary to holding that dubious honor for the last two years running. The Celestial Kingdom topped the lists knighting four players, which is three less knighthoods than the kingdom gave out in 2009. Wetlands and Iron Mountains tied for second belting three players each; Blackspire, Goldenvale, and Burning Lands each knighted two players. Crystal Groves did not report belting anyone in 2010, the only kingdom to forgo knighting this year. Neverwinter, Desertwinds, Dragonspine, Emerald Hills, and Golden Plains only knighted one player apiece. Rising Winds also knighted one of their populous, but also joined with Tal Dagore to jointly knight Konrad.
It has always seemed to follow, that in years when more chapters are created, more people are knighted. The reverse seems to be true as well, a coincidental balance.
To Sum up
Overall I must say, we continue to grow, to intermingle and learn from one another. We are doing very well. Make an effort this year to meet people from other groups, and to support your local chapters. It is our responsibility, each of us, to help keep the players we have as well as gaining new ones. Please feel free to contact us if you have questions about the report, the wiki, or the ORK. We would be happy to help. Thanks to the staff of the Wiki, and to all the chapters who reported back on their audit this year. And to Alona, and Savaen for their help with editing and format.