The second annual Catapult Catharsis competition, a part of Beakerhead, was held on Sept. 14, 2014 at the Winter Sport Institute (WinSport) in Calgary.
Twelve teams, all from Calgary and the surrounding areas, competed in the tournament, which featured unique catapults that the teams had designed and built on their own.
Problem-solvers and builders are challenged by the competition to create catapults that have amazing accomplishments of engineering.
“We want to combine art and science by letting people create an interesting and wacky way to launch items they love to hate,” said Claudia Bustos the community and communications specialist with Beakerhead.
“Last year the teams had a lot of fun with their catapults, so I was excited to see what this year’s teams would come up with,” said Bustos.
“I didn’t think it was possible, but they turned out even better.”
The event was announced by Jay Ingram, a Canadian scientist, author and broadcaster.
He is the co-founder of Beakerhead, alongside Mary Ann Moser, which they started in 2013 to combine, art, science and engineering.
The 12 teams, each with three launches, competed for five awards.
These awards included overall champions, stickler for detail and accuracy, most cleverly cathartic design, fist pump award for team spirit and the boldness award for epic failure to launch.
“It’s all about fun for us,” said Tim Walters, a member of the team Engineers without Morals.
This is the second year Engineers without Morals has competed in the contest.
In 2013 they took home the award for overall champions.
“It is fun just to participate, but leaving with an award doesn’t hurt,” laughed Walters, as his team left with the sticklers for detail and accuracy award.
While the teams reset their catapults, the audience was entertained by a number of other activities happening at the WinSport institute that afternoon.
For children there was a life size foosball game they could join in on.
Kids would strap their hands onto a foam bar and then the game would begin.
For adults there was a food truck and some beer gardens near the back of the field.
At the half-time show, a few players from the Calgary Stampeders showed up to test out their kicking and throwing abilities against the catapults.
“This is my family’s second year coming to this event,” said Kelly Sieben, one of the many Calgarians that showed up to watch the catapults.
“My boys just love watching the catapults launch the different objects.”
There were many different designs to the catapults, but a recurring theme was the medieval theme, showing up in three of this year’s catapults.
To add to that theme, some individuals from The Barony of Montengarde had items on display for people to view.
The Barony of Montengarde is an international not-for-profit educational organization dedicated to researching and recreating the customs, combat, and courtesy of the Middle Ages.
Although all the 2014 Beakerhead events are done, individuals can find out more about the other events they put on this year and the events that are coming next year.