Tabletop gaming event returns to Bronx Park CC
Tabletop gamers, unite!
On Jan. 27, Game-itoba returns to Bronx Park Community Centre (720 Henderson Hwy.) after a three-year, pandemic-induced hiatus. Game-itoba, which began in 2018, is Winnipeg’s largest tabletop game convention that features a variety of games, including board games, card games, role-playing games and miniature games. According to organizers, there will be more than 250 scheduled games played over the weekend. A library of more than 500 games will also be available to all attendees.
“We’re a family friendly event, so people can come, bring their kids, and basically play games all weekend,” spokesperson Kirby Gehman explained. “It’s an awful lot of fun. You can learn new games, play old favourites, meet people who like to play games. We give people the opportunity to play games the way they like. There’s even solo gaming.”
Gehman first got into tabletop gaming as a way to spend time with his family.
“I have five kids. As they grew up, board-gaming was a great way to keep our family together,” Gehman said. “I love the fact that I can get my young teens to sit at a table with me for an hour, without devices.”
Now, Gehman and his adult children are all volunteers with Game-itoba, working both to make the event happen and running games during the convention.
“The board game community in Winnipeg is incredible,” Gehman said. “Even throughout the pandemic, the community stayed together, because you can play board games online. You can bond over something you all love.”
For those just getting into board games, Gehman recommends some of his family favourites Ticket to Ride or Code Names.
“Ticket to Ride is easy to learn but difficult to master,” he said. “Code Names is kind of a guessing game where you guess what others are thinking, which makes for a lot of fun.”
For the more advanced gamer, the sky’s the limit.
“There are more games than I have time to play,” Gehman said. “My current favourite right now is a game called We Care, a game about doctors fighting the COVID pandemic. It’s very realistic and dark. Board games are almost becoming art, because they can say things and be fun.”
Game-itoba runs Fri., Jan. 27 from 6 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. the following day, Sat., Jan. 28 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. the following day, and Sun., from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Weekend passes are $40, or just $20 for Friday or Sunday only. Children under 12 get in free when accompanied by an adult. For more information, visit Game-itoba.ca
Sheldon Birnie is a reporter/photographer for the Free Press Community Review. The author of Missing Like Teeth: An Oral History of Winnipeg Underground Rock (1990-2001), his writing has appeared in journals and online platforms across Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. A husband and father of two young children, Sheldon enjoys playing guitar and rec hockey when he can find the time. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org Call him at 204-697-7112