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Mission Report Page


Some parts of this page are still under construction

This page lists the details of the "missions" I've participated in.  It includes trooping events for the 501st Legion and other charity events I've done.



Newest entries are listed at the top.


= = = = = = = = = = 2015 = = = = = = = = = =

April 18, 2015 - Memphis Roller Derby - Fairgrounds Pipkin Building - Memphis, TN

This was a fun event and the first time I've ever been to a roller derby match. I wore my Stormtrooper for the first time in a LONG time at this event. We had a good turn out with several Mid South Garrision members and several Rancor Raiders Garrison members attending. Afterwards we went to Genghis Grill for some great food.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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April 11, 2015 - Grand Opening - Abandoned Treasures - Southaven, MS

This was a grand opening event for a shop called Abandoned Treasures. My wife has a booth inside and she asked the owner if they would like some Star Wars characters to add something for the kids at the event. I was Darth Vader and Ricky Weaver (my son-in-law) wore my Stormtrooper.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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January 23, 2015 - Hero Night with the Mississippi Riverkings - Lander's Center - Southaven, MS

This was an event with the Mississippi Riverkings hockey team. I was Darth Vader and Ricky Weaver (my son-in-law) wore my Stormtrooper.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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January 10, 2015 - ShadowCon - West Memphis, AR

My first visit to ShadowCon. This was the first year it was moved from Memphis over to West Memphis. I was Darth Vader and Ricky Weaver (my son-in-law) wore my Stormtrooper.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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= = = = = = = = = = 2014 = = = = = = = = = =

June 7, 2014 - Blast-a-Trooper Fundraiser for Children's Miracle Network - Wal-Mart - Olive Branch, MS

This was a fundraising event held for the Children's Miracle Network. We set up the Blast-a-Trooper at the local Olive Branch Wal-Mart and took donations for a chance to shoot the Nerf guns at the troopers. We raised $501 over the five hours we were there! Lots of shoppers stopped by to take photos with us and to take a crack at shooting the troopers. I was Darth Vader and Ricky Weaver (my son-in-law) wore my Stormtrooper.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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May 31, 2014 - Summer Reading Kick-Off - Southaven Public Library - Southaven, MS

This is a repeat of an annual event we've done at the Southaven Public Library to help them kick off their Summer Reading Program. This year we ran the Blast-a-Trooper as a "dry-run" for the following weekend where we'll be running it for real at the Olive Branch Wal-Mart. We had a great turn out, the library staff estimated it at about 200! The kids had a blast shooting the Nerf guns and everyone had a chance to take photos with the characters there. I was Darth Vader and Ricky Weaver (my son-in-law) wore my Stormtrooper.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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May 3, 2014 - Boy Scout Fundraiser - Lake Cormorant, MS

Fundraising event held for the Lake Cormorant Boy Scouts. I was Darth Vader at this event.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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May 3, 2014 - Free Comic Book Day - Comics & Collectibles - Memphis, TN

Free Comic Book Day troop. LOTS of pictures! I was Darth Vader at this event.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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March 22, 2014 - Mid South Con 32 - Day 2 - Hilton Hotel - Memphis, TN

Day Two of Mid South Con 32. Lather, Rinse, Repeat....trooped as Darth Vader along with Ricky Weaver (Stormtrooper). Justin Bryant was on hand to take photos and act as a handler. The Saturday night MSC crowd was even bigger and we took tons of photos with the fans.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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March 21, 2014 - Mid South Con 32 - Day 1 - Hilton Hotel - Memphis, TN

Day One of Mid South Con 32. Trooped as Darth Vader along with Joseph Bernot (Stormtrooper), Ricky Weaver (Stormtrooper) and Justin Bryant (Imperial Officer). As usual, the MSC crowd was super excited to see the Star Wars characters and especially Darth Vader. This was Ricky's first ever troop as he was testing out my TK armor. He had a blast.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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February 21, 2014 - Ashler Hall Preservation Promotion - Rock103 Studios - Memphis, TN

A local rock radio station (Rock103) invited the Ashler Hall Preservation Society that is sponsored by the Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention group to stop by for their first ever "Friday LIVE" in the studio. I attended as Darth Vader and the local Catwoman was also there. The radio station staff, the DJs and the local band that was there all got a huge kick out of my costume. Jerry "the King" Lawler was there and the station gave out Wrestlemania tickets to everyone to say thanks for stopping by.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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February 15, 2014 - Ashler Hall Preservation Promotion - The University Club - Memphis, TN

This event was a promotion of the Ashler Hall Preservation Society that is sponsored by the Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention group. Me (Darth Vader), Joseph Bernot (TK) and Jeff Potter (TIE Pilot) trooped this and got great reactions from the fans.

There were several other costumer there including Catwoman, a Ghostbuster and a Batman. The local Action News 5 film crew took some videos and they posted that and a nice photo on their web site. Frank Chin, a local cosplayer/costumer took some great photos and posted them on his Facebook page.


To see photos of this event, click HERE


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= = = = = = = = = = 2013 = = = = = = = = = =

November, 2013 - Private Birthday Party - Southaven, MS

I did a friend a favor and showed up at a birthday party as a Stormtrooper!

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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October 31, 2013 - Halloween - International Paper - Memphis, TN

I wore by costume for our Halloween festivities at work.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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2013 - Memphis Redbirds Super Hero Day - AutoZone Park - Memphis, TN

I can't remember the exact date but I trooped the Supe Hero Day with the Memphis Redbirds baseball team.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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March 23, 2013 - Mid South Con 31 - Hilton Hotel - Memphis, TN

Trooped Mid South Con.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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March 20, 2013 - John Jackson Miller Booksigning - M R Dye Public Library - Horn Lake, MS

Trooped a booksigning event for John Jackson Miller at the Horn Lake public library.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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= = = = = = = = = = 2012 = = = = = = = = = =

October 28, 2012 - Fall Festival - DeSoto Hills Baptist Church - Southaven, MS

Trooped my church's fall festival.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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September 15, 2012 - Reading with the Force - B J Chain Public Library - Olive Branch, MS

Reading promotion event at the Olive Branch public library.

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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July 21, 2012 - Superhero and Comic Night with the Memphis Redbirds - AutoZone Park - Memphis, TN

This was my third time to troop an event with the Memphis Redbirds at AutoZone Park. This event was Superhero and Comic night, although it should have just been "Star Wars" night. I trooped this event in my Stormtrooper. There were only a couple of comic characters and there were TEN Star Wars characters there! We had a great time and they had a big crowd at the game. I ended up going to visit every suite on the 2nd and 3rd floors and then went out to see the fans in the "cheap seats" out on the grass area.

Took bunches of photos with the fans and had a great time with the staff. After the game, the 501st crew went over to Memphis Pizza to grab a bite to eat and to hang out together. A BIG thanks to the Arkansas Crimson Nova Squad group that came over and to the Mid South Garrison for letting me take point on this event. Can't wait until the next one!

To see photos of this event, click HERE


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March 24, 2012 - Private Birthday Party - Olive Branch, MS

This was a birthday party that was set up based on a story that a 501st member saw on the local news. A little girl's dad passed away from cancer and on the news interview she said she would miss getting to watch Star Wars with him.

It was a really fun party and the kids had a blast. I wore my Darth Vader costume and Dave Royer went as an Imperial Officer.

Sorry, no photos are available of this event.

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March 17, 2012 - Mal's St. Patrick's Day Parade - Jackson, MS

Rocked my Stormtrooper costume at the St. Patrick's Day Parade in Jackson, MS.

Sorry, no photos are available of this event (yet).

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February 10, 2012 - Private Birthday Party - Clarksdale Country Club - Clarksdale, MS

This was the birthday party that was auctioned off during the 12th Annual Crystal Ball Gala. The winner paid $500 for this item during the live auction!

The family did an amazing job of this party...they used the airbrushed panels from the Crystal Ball to decorate with and even made Jedi robes for all the kids that attended. Not only that but the mom and grand mother even wore Leah and Amidala costumes!

It was a really fun party and the kids had a blast. I wore my Vader costume and Justin Bryant (TK 3189) went as a Stormtrooper.

Sorry, no photos are available of this event.

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January 21, 2012 - 12th Annual Crystal Ball Gala - Southaven Arena - Southaven, MS

This was a HUGE event held at the Southaven Arena. The 12th Annual Crystal Ball Gala is a fundraiser for the Community Foundation of Northwest Mississippi. This year the theme was "May the Force Be With Us" so everything was centered around a Star Wars theme.

There is way too much detail about this event to list here so I'll be putting up a dedicated page just for this event. Stay tuned...


To see photos of this event, click HERE

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= = = = = = = = = = 2011 = = = = = = = = = =

December 19, 2011 - Midnight Game Release - Star Wars: The Old Republic - Best Buy - Memphis, TN

Trooped with the Mid South Garrison in my Stormtrooper costume. I think the Besy Buy employees had more fun with us than the customers did.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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December 3, 2011 - Christmas Parade (for Make-a-Wish) - Madison, MS

Back in the Stormtrooper for the first time since July for the Madison, MS Christmas Parade. Our Garrison marched for the Mississippi Make-a-Wish Foundation.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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October 30, 2011 - Fall Festival - DeSoto Hills Baptist Church - Southaven, MS

Made an appearance as Darth Vader at the DeSoto Hills Baptist Church's Fall Festival.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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October 15, 2011 - Memphis Comic & Fantasy Convention - University of Memphis - Memphis, TN

Made an appearance as Darth Vader at the second annual Memphis Comic & Fantasy Convention held at the University of Memphis.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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October 1, 2011 - GatorFest - Lake Cormorant Elementary School - Lake Cormorant, MS

Made an appearance as Darth Vader at the Lake Cormorant Elementary School "GatorFest".

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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September 4, 2011 - Memphis Redbird's Game - AutoZone Park - Memphis, TN

Made an appearance as Darth Vader at AutoZone Park and got to throw out the first pitch at the Memphis Redbird's game.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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August 24, 2011 - JDRF Kickoff - International Paper Southwind - Memphis, TN

Made a "special appearance" at work as Darth Vader to help kickoff the JDRF campaign and get people to sign up for the IP walk team.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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August 21, 2011 - Waging War - DeSoto Hills Baptist Church - Southaven, MS

Made a "special appearance" at church as Darth Vader to help with the sermon.

Sorry, no photos of this event are available.

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August 11, 2011 - May the Force be with you this school year - M. R. Davis Public Library - Southaven, MS

My third troop as Darth Vader. There were 185 people. More details to follow later.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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July 23, 2011 - Kids Wish Network - Yazoo City, MS

My second troop as Darth Vader. The Kids Wish Network tour made a stop in Yazoo City to provide toys, cloting and other goods to the families affected by the recent flooding and tornadoes in the Yazoo City, MS area. There were approximately 1,500 people that came through and registered and received the gift packages on Saturday July 23rd. It was a great event and the kids got a really big kick out of seeing Darth Vader and the other members of the Empire. In addition to me as Darth Vader, there were two Tie Fighter Pilots, a Biker Scout, an AT-AT Driver and an Imperial Officer

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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July 4, 2011 - Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention promotion - 4th of July Celebration - Olive Branch, MS

Rise Lord Vader!! EXACTLY one year to the day from my Stormtrooper debut, this was my first debut troop in my Darth Vader costume. I'll add more details later but for now check out the photo link below...

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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May 28, 2011 - Disney Star Wars Weekends Parade - Orlando, FL

This was my first ever trip to Disney World and it happened during the annual Star Wars Weekends. I was able to march in the motorcade/ Parade on May 28th and also got to meet Anthony Daniels (C3-P0) while in the backlot staging area. Since it was Orlando in May, you know it was HOT! The Florida Garrison did a great job of organizing and coordinating the event and I got to meet some of the Florida squad. The parade only lasted about 20 minutes but it was an absolute blast getting to march in front of so many Star Wars fans. The people there for the Star Wars Weekends were familiar with who the 501st Legion is and they even chanted "Five-Oh-First!" when we came out.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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May 14, 2011 - Reagan's Birthday Party - Olive Branch, MS

Reagan's Birthday Party - Olive Branch, MS

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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May 13, 2011 - Crystal Ball Meeting - Watkins, Ludlam, Winter & Stennis - Olive Branch, MS

Crystal Ball Meeting - Watkins, Ludlam, Winter & Stennis - Olive Branch, MS

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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May 7, 2011 - Free Comic Book Day - Heroes and Dreams - Flowood, MS

Free Comic Book Day

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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May 5, 2011 - Daniel Wallace Book Signing - Hernando Public Library - Hernando, MS

They had a great turn out at this event. The estimate was at just over 200! It all got started when they dimmed the lights and started playing the Star Wars theme over the PA, then out of the back room entered the procession of a Jedi, a young clone, an Imperial Officer, a Stormtrooper and Daniel Wallace. Once we made it to center stage, they turned up the lights and Daniel was introduced. The crowd was really into the discussion and Daniel even gave away some books to the kids that answered some Star Wars trivia questions. The head librarian, Heather Lawson, was very thankful for our participation and called out the 501st for being there. Davis-Kidd Booksellers sent us some really nice patches for the event (see photos-link below) and after Daniel's discussion he took questions from the kids. After the Q&A session Daniel sat at a table and signed books and posters as we took photos with the fans. They also gave away several door prizes furnished by Davis-Kidd. Afterwards, the Memphis Fan Force took Daniel out to dinner (I stopped by for a photo but couldn't stay to eat). The library staff was super appreciative of our participation at this event and they even provided cookies, fruit, water and tea in the dressing area for us!

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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March 25-26, 2011 - Mid South Con 29 - Hilton Hotel - Memphis, TN

Mid South Con 29!

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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March 19, 2011 - St. Patrick's Day Parade - Jackson, MS

My first troop with my fellow Rancors!  I'll post the details later...

After I got home from this troop, as I was cleaning up my kit and preparing for the next event, I tried out a new set up for my voice amp.  I moved my wireless receiver and voice amp to the back armor and can now really crank up the volume with no feedback!  I am really stoked about that since I've been tweaking that set up ever since I installed it to get the maximum volume with no feedback out of it.  I think I've finally found the perfect set up.  I just have to get used to how to put the armor on and connect the push-to-talk cable into the back.  With a little practice, I'm sure it'll be no problem.

I can't wait to test this out at Mid South Con next weekend!

No photos available

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March 5, 2011 - Private Birthday Party #2 - CROSSfire Commandos - Cordova, TN

(Second solo kids birthday party)

No photos available

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March 5, 2011 - Private Birthday Party #1 - CROSSfire Commandos - Cordova, TN

(First solo kids birthday party)

No photos available

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= = = = = = = = = = 2010 = = = = = = = = = =

November 6, 2010 - Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention - Memphis Cook Convention Center - Memphis, TN

This troop was the long anticipated first ever Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention. This was the event Justin Bryant (TK3189) and I trooped for back in July to promote. Unfortunately I ended up being the only 501st member able to make it and I didn't have a handler so this was a totally "solo" trooping event. I had no help at all with this one so I was a bit anxious about how it would go.

As it turned out, this was a really fun event. I got there on Saturday morning and found the promoter and he showed me to the changing area. I left my armor bin and took a walk around to get the "lay of the land". This event was held in the lobby area of the Memphis Cook Convention Center so there was tons of room to walk around and plenty of space for photos with the crowd.

Speaking of crowd, it was a little lighter than I had expected so that was a relief. Since I didn't have any handler support, I had to manage the crowd and move around all on my own. The fans were really great and I took lots of photos. This was my first event where I tried out hanging my new binders from a strap on my belt. It worked pretty good but with no handler support, it was a real pain to fumble with my blaster while trying to get the binders on and off...so I've decided to leave the binders in my armor bin next time unless I have some handler support. It was just too much trouble with the blaster and the binders and no one to help.

All in all, a very fun event. I took plently of breaks in the changing area and they had a BBQ vendor on site so that made lunch a nice long break. I hope they do this convention again next year. I even had a couple of people post on the Mid South Garrison forums that they had seen me and were interested in joining the 501st.

This was my ninth troop so by now I had worked out the "kinks" in my costume and was finally getting to the point where I felt comfortable in it and could easily wear it for long periods of time.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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October 31, 2010 - DeSoto Hills Fall Festival - DeSoto Hills Baptist Church - Southaven, MS

(solo troop with reworked PTT set up)

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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October 25, 2010 - Force Unleashed II Game Release - Game Stop - Southaven, MS

Justin Bryant (TK 3189) and I trooped this event at one of the Southaven Game Stop stores. My nephew was the manager there so we helped promote the Force Unleashed II game release. My son Zach came along to help take photos.

This was a fun event and was pretty laid back since most of the people that had pre-ordered the game were just there for the late-night pick up. They showed up and waited for their game and while there, got to take their photo with a Stormtrooper! How cool is that?!?!

At closing time, after all the customers had gone, we got to clown around and take some photos with the store staff and they got a kick out of that. This event was unique in that our garrison had two simultaneous troops going on that same night. This was also the first time I tried out my newly redesigned PTT (push-to-talk). I mounted a switch on the end of a wire and ran it up my arm to my amp. That way I didn't have to reach up to press the button to talk. The only problem was the exposed wires so it looks like a tiny bit more R&D work is in store for the PTT set up.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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October 17, 2010 - Mississippi Diabetes Foundation Walk - River Walk Park - Columbus, MS

After the Nashville Walk for Autism, I ordered a new wireless microphone and this was my first chance to use it. I mounted the mic and transmitter in my helmet and the receiver and amp in my chest armor. It made it so much easier to put on and take off my helmet! I had to play with the volume settings a bit to eliminate the feedback but overall I was a lot happier with it. I still wanted more volume out of it but just the convenience of not having a wire running out of my helmet was worth the effort.

This was a fun troop and the weather was really nice. Justin (TK3189) and I had driven to Columbus and met up with Jason Chrest (TD2654). We didn't have a changing area so we suited up right there in the parking lot of a local restaurant and walked over to the Columbus Riverwalk Park. It was mild and sunny so there was a great turn out for the walk. The walkers were mostly kids so we had to do some "wrangling" to keep our blasters from running away but it was a really fun event.

I tried something new for this troop - my newly completed "trooper chatter" set up. I ran an extra amp in my back armor and had an MP3 player connected to it. I was able to play Star Wars music and run the custom Rancor Raiders Trooper Chatter MP3 that I had created. It was cool to be able to play the Star Wars music but I found myself having to fiddle with the MP3 player a lot so I'll need to come up with a better solution for accessing the MP3 player to start/stop and adjust the volume.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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September 11, 2010 - Walk Now for Autism Speaks - Bicentinneal Park - Nashville, TN

This was my first overnight out of town trooping event. Justin Bryant (TK3189) and I drove to Nashville on a Friday in order to troop with the MidSouth Garrison at this Autism walk. It was my third troop with the MidSouth Garrison and I have to say they are a great bunch of guys and gals. We met up in the park and hung out until all the attending 501st members had arrived. Then we unloaded our armor bins and made the trek across the parking lot to the changing area. (Man am I glad to have those big wheels on my armor bin, they make it soooo easy to transport!)

This event was a huge walk for Autism and the crowd was really great. The weather was warm and sunny so you know it was another hot day for those of us in helmets and plastic! We lined up in the staging area and led off with Stormtroopers escorting Lord Vader, then Officers and Clones. We had a great time mixing with the crowd and taking photos while everyone was waiting for the walk to begin. There was a large grassy area in the middle of all the tents where the walk teams were set up so we wandered around and chatted with the walkers and support teams, always stopping to take pictures along the way. Once the walk got underway, we stood near the start/finish line and waved, high-fived and fist bumped the walkers as they passed by.

After the walk, we stopped at a local Chili's and got some lunch and spent some time with our fellow 501st members. It was a great troop and I'd be happy to do it again!

One key thing I learned on this troop was that I had to figure out a better set up for my helmet microphone. Having to disconnect and reconnect it everytime I took my helmet off was a REAL PAIN. When I got home, I immediately started looking for a wireless microphone set up so I could elimiate the wire running from my helmet to my amp (located in my chest armor). I also decided that I needed a better location for my PTT (push-to-talk) button. I originally located it in the bottom of my chest armor so that I could just reach up and press it to talk, but that is a real pain having to reach up and with my forearm and bicep armor pinching me, it literally was a pain! More R&D needed on the PTT.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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August 28, 2010 - Star Wars Day - Davis Kidd Booksellers - Memphis, TN

I had really been looking forward to this event because it was the first one that had been a true Star Wars theme!  I knew the people there would be big Star Wars fans.  I was really excited about this event and had been anticipating doing it since I would also get to meet some new 501st members from the Mid South Garrison and be able to troop with Mike Eubank (TK-7686) from the Rancor Raiders.  Unfortunately it turned out to be one of the most uncomfortable troops I've done.

To start, we suited up in the basement area and then had to come up a very long flight of stairs. Talk about finding out the hard way that your leg armor needs to be trimmed more!  Those stairs were tough for me.  I made the climb up the stairs but it was a lot of work (and painful due to some pinching at the back of the knees).  By the time I made it to the top of the stairs I was really winded and breathing heavy.  THEN my helmet fans started acting up and not working right.  As soon as I got out to the photo area my lenses fogged up and I couldn't see a thing.  I had to make that trek back down the stairs to work on my fans.  Ok, got the fans working and now...back up the stairs AGAIN!

I enjoyed getting to meet some new troopers but this event really showed me where my kit needed attention.  As soon as I got home, out came the Dremel and I got to work adjusting my leg armor so I can move up and down stairs. I also started working on replacing the 9 volt battery set up with AA batteries instead to get more juice to the cooling fans.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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August 27, 2010 - Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention promotion - Memphis Redbirds Baseball Game at AutoZone Park - Memphis, TN

This was my first "solo" troop and it was held at night at the Memphis Redbirds baseball game when there were promotions for several events going so I wasn't the only character in costume there - just the only one in a Star Wars costume!

This was an outdoor event and the weather was fantastic.  They had a really big crowd at the game and I was at the park entrance so that everyone coming into the park for the game walked right by me.  There were also some comic book heros there and some people that looked like they were from a renaisannce fair.  Justin Bryant (TK3189) had come with me to act as my handler and he helped me with crowd control and even took some photos of me at the park.

This was my first troop with my new eFX helmet and I had now installed a push-to-talk (PTT) button in my chest armor.  I had located the PTT switch right in the middle of my chest armor at the bottom so I could just reach up with my hand and click the switch to talk.  I worked pretty good but sometimes was a pain having to reach up and push the switch, especially while posing for photos or holding my blaster.  I sensed more R&D work ahead to perfect this.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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July 31, 2010 - Make-A-Wish Fundraiser - Governor's Square Mall - Clarksville, TN

For my second troop, I drove to Clarksville, TN (about a four hour drive for me) but I was really eager to experience a large scale event.  This was held by the Mid South Garrison and was a fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.  My wife and daughter made the drive with me so it was a chance for them to shop for back to school things and see me in action as a Stormtrooper.  What a cool event, there were lots of different characters there and the crowd was great.  We were set up in the middle atrium area of a big mall in Clarksville with a changing area right behind a really big stage.

Fans in the mall could make a $5 donation to come up on stage and have their picture made with any of their favorite Star Wars characters. It was non-stop for four solid hours with people coming across the stage to take photos and even get our autographs.  My wife and daughter were amazed to see the crowd's reaction to the 501st!  We raised over $1,200 in only four hours.

I had a great time at this event and figured out I had to make some adjustments to my armor to allow me to move up and down stairs a lot better.  There were only three steps up to the stage but my kit gave me real problems going up and down them so that was something I definitely had to fix.  I used my new armor bin and helmet bag and they both worked out great. Everyone thought the electronic sounds from my key pad/locking mechanism on the Stanley FatMax Extreme were cool. July had been a busy month and Diane had already sewn together some protective covers for my armor so they worked out nicely too.

We stopped at a local steak house near the mall and had a nice meal before making the four hour trek home.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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July 4, 2010 - Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention promotion - Handy Park & Beale Street - Memphis, TN

This event was my very first troop!  I was super excited to finally be getting to put on my Stormtrooper costume and get out in public. It was Memphis in July so the heat was incredible.  I think it was over 100 degrees that day and I know it was uber-hot in my armor.

I met up with Justin Bryant (TK3189) in the Olive Branch Wal-Mart parking lot at 5:15pm and we headed downtown.  We got to downtown Memphis around 6:00pm, parked at Peabody Place Garage and walked over to W C Handy Park to check in with the event promoter (Joe Thordarson) and find the changing area.

We suited up and were ready to troop by 6:30pm.  As we left the changing area, we found a huge crowd on Beale Street at W C Handy Park due to the Red, Hot and Blues event that was going on for July 4th. We did some photos for Joe (the promoter) and then took photos with the crowd non-stop on Beale Street until 8:00pm.  Joe handed out flyers promoting the upcoming 2010 Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention as we took photos with the crowd. The crowd was really amazed by us being there and we took hundreds of photos with the public.

At about 8:00pm, we started making our way off Beale toward the stage area to change.  An hour and a half in the blazing July Memphis heat for my first event - I'd say I passed my first "trial by fire"!  I was totally amazed by the public's reaction to my costume.  I had lots of people remark about how cool it was and the look on people's faces said it all. I couldn't wait for the next event!

I learned a LOT at this troop, including the fact that I had to find a better way to transport my costume. I was using a huge rolling suitcase my wife had, but it wasn't really up to the task. It got wet backstage and the wheels were too small and made it hard to manage over curbs and sidewalks. I also learned I needed more practice suiting up and I had to work out a better sound system for my vox set up.

To see photos of this event, click HERE

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