FOND DU LAC — Brothers Tyler and T.J. Schultz have been axe-throwing competitively for several years, traveling the country with their league. But at home in Fond du Lac, they didn't have a good area to practice. That's why they created Fondy Axe, a new axe-throwing venue in Fond du Lac opening Saturday, Oct. 1.
"It's definitely going to be nice having one more local, and we know a lot of people in this area, too, that have been really excited for us to have one close by because right now Oshkosh is the closest one," T.J. Schultz said.
“It's really... kind of a little dangerous, but it's actually extremely safe,” Tyler Schultz said. “People just like the feeling of doing something that is kind of off-the-wall.”
The World Axe Throwing League was formed in 2017, and in only a few years, its axe-throwing competitions began to be televised on ESPN, while artisan axes at big retailers like Nordstrom are flying off the shelves.
But with a rise in popularity, comes more safety concerns.
At a recent Fond du Lac City Council meeting, some Council members expressed concern over the venue serving alcohol while people are throwing heavy, sharp objects, and allowing children as young as 10 to participate.
But Tyler and T.J. Schultz said they understand the risks, and are prepared to keep patrons safe.
“We're gonna do everything we can to make sure that people aren't too drunk,” Tyler Schultz said. “You know... it's... our decision to cut people off or not serve them at all if they seem too drunk before they even get here.”
Participants also need to sign a waiver, and children under 18 must have an adult present.
“At the end of the day, it's, you know, our responsibility and it's our fault if someone gets hurt, ultimately.” Tyler Schultz said. “You know, they sign a waiver, but at the end of the day, it comes back on us. So we're gonna do everything we can to make sure that we’re doing it safe.”
The Schultz brothers won over the City Council, which ended up unanimously voting to approve Fondy Axe’s request to sell alcohol on the premises.
More information can be found on Fondy Axe's website.