MOUNTAIN LIFE - Blue Mountains | Fall 2018

FALL 2018 ML BLUE 19 You’ve probably seen the Axed mobile throwing trailer on the move in the Blue Mountains by now. Axe-throwing—a surprisingly satisfying and remarkably addictive activity—has been gaining popularity across Canada. But Melissa Herod and her husband John have brought a new spin to it, taking their axe- throwing show on the road to local events and businesses. When the Herods decided to move to the Blue Mountains, it was a lifestyle decision. They’d lived in the city long enough and with their first baby on the way they were motivated to move north to raise their new family. With a son starting school this fall and a younger daughter at home, this unique business venture has turned out to be the perfect fit. Melissa has worked a laundry list of unique jobs but axe-throwing now tops the charts. “You name it; I’ve done it,” she laughs. “I was a restaurant manager, I was a doula, I was a florist. So axe-throwing isn’t that out of line. We have friends who look at John and I and say, ‘if I had to choose two people to have an axe-throwing trailer, it would totally be you guys.’ It’s a perfect fit.” “We were really surprised that no one had done this here yet,” explains Melissa. “We weren’t planning on doing the trailer originally. We had a physical location planned but then an opportunity to offer axe-throwing at Blue Mountain Village came up and we didn’t want to pass that up. That got us thinking of all the opportunities we’d have if we were mobile. We paused on the physical location and built the trailer and it’s been non-stop since then.” The response has been overwhelming locally and out-of-town business is also growing, since the operation travels easily. “We are getting an amazing response from people,” says Melissa. “There’s a lot of enthusiasm. We’ve done pop ups at local businesses, birthday parties, rehearsal dinners and even a party for the Society of Beer Drinking Ladies.” After throwing a few axes of my own, I can tell you it’s an activity that sucks you in quickly and has you saying ‘just one more throw’ over and over. I asked Melissa why axe-throwing seems to have such a universal appeal. “It’s because everyone can do it,” she explains. “We built the trailer to be wheelchair-accessible which I think was really important. There are not a lot of things that people can do in a group that’s accessible for everyone. It’s also neat to find something that has a real sport competitive component but doesn’t require you to be an athlete. Also, men and women can both do it; and very often, women have the edge. The level of satisfaction when it finally hits the target, and sticks, is awesome. It’s so frustrating, and then it lands. That look of joy is the part I love best.” A physical location is still in the future for Axed and the idea of franchising is also on the table. To find out where the Axed Mobile Throwing Club will be next, check them out online at or follow them on Instagram at —Allison Kennedy Davies AXE-THROWING TO GO UP FRONT Axe throwing is an activity that sucks you in quickly and has you saying “just one more throw” over and over. "We’ve done pop ups at local businesses, birthday parties, rehearsal dinners, and for the Society of Beer Drinking Ladies.”Axed owner Melissa Herod. ALLISON KENNEDY DAVIES