Hempfield ax-throwing facility expanding to Unity | TribLIVE.com

Hempfield ax-throwing facility expanding to Unity

Megan Tomasic
Shane Dunlap | Tribune-Review
Paul Wedge, of Irwin, (background right), and James Saul, of West Newton, both members of the Valhalla axe throwing league, throw during a practice session at Valhalla Indoor Axe Throwing on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019 in Hempfield. Five team members from Valhalla axe throwing league, the only league in western Pennsylvania, are traveling to compete in the national indoor axe throwing championships in Toronto, Ontario on Feb. 16.

A Hempfield business is expanding its Viking-themed footprint into Unity, and residents could soon be channeling their inner “savage” by throwing axes.

Valhalla Indoor Axe Throwing, which will have 10 ax-throwing lanes as well as 20-yard indoor archery ranges, will have a soft opening July 10, with an official grand opening weekend July 13 and 14 from noon to 10 p.m. The facility is at 3595 Route 30 East, Suite 301B in Unity.

“We’re so excited to go to (Unity), because we’ll be bringing something brand new to the area,” co-owner Alicia Metz said in a news release. “A lot of people who live there maybe haven’t been to our (Hempfield) facility or don’t like traveling to Pittsburgh, so we’re bringing ax throwing to their community.”

Metz, along with Bobby Jenkins, opened the Hempfield location in 2017, one of the first facilities to open in southwestern Pennsylvania. Located at 6781 Route 30, guests can throw a hatchet-style ax at a target from at least 14 feet away. The location offers six ax-throwing lanes and outdoor archery lessons.

In Unity, the 4,000-square-foot facility offers a shop selling Valhalla merchandise, axes, knives and survival gear. It has a private party room, and the facility can hold up to 100 people.

“We were at the point where we felt like we had to grow to a second location or we weren’t really sharing what we have with the world,” Metz said. “We want to keep on growing and keep sharing this family-friendly entertainment center with as many communities as possible.”

Both Valhalla facilities are members of the National Axe Throwing Federation, which was founded in 2016 and has almost 5,000 members who compete for a spot in the National Axe Throwing Championship in Toronto, Canada. Winners receive the Wilson Cup and more than $16,500 in prizes.

Some members from the Hempfield facility were sent to the championship in 2018 and 2019, competing in Philadelphia, New Jersey and Maryland.

“When we started this journey, we didn’t know where it was going to take us, but we’ve now reached the point where we have about 80 league members in Jeannette, including our youth members,” Metz said. “It’s crazy to think we’ve given that many people a second home where they can come every week and visit their new family and just be themselves. The kids now have a sport they can be proud of when they’re telling their friends about league, and a place they can come to that makes them feel unique and special.”

The Unity facility’s season will start July 21 as an eight-week session. Members must pay $150 to join, and will meet from noon to 3 p.m. Sundays.

The first 100 customers to visit the Unity facility starting July 10 will be entered into a raffle for a chance to win a $300 Valhalla gift card. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will kick off the weekend’s events, starting at noon Saturday.

All grand opening attendees will receive a $2 food voucher for every $20 spent on services and merchandise. The voucher can be used at provided food services throughout the weekend.

Tin Shack BBQ, of Greensburg, will sell food on site from noon to 3 p.m. and will unveil four new menu items. From 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Greenhouse Winery of Irwin will serve wine and beer samples.

On Sunday, the Ash & Kris Kitchen of Greensbur, will have a food truck starting at 11 a.m., along with Udderly Fresh Rolled Ice Cream of West Mifflin. Laurel Highlands Meadery will host a mead tasting from noon to 3 p.m.

The grand opening will feature a 50-50 raffle and other gift card and prize raffles.

“Anyone who walks through our doors will feel welcome and accepted,” said Metz, who spent a large portion of her childhood in the Latrobe and Ligonier communities. “When you join our leagues, you end up finding a second family.”

Reservations are available from noon to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, with walk-ins available 4 to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, although online bookings are recommended.

Megan Tomasic is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Megan at 724-850-1203, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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