Ladyblades from the 2022 event

Mar 17th - Mar 19th

Urban Open Ladyblades + Urban Madness

Durham, NC

Event Date(s)

Mar 17th - Mar 19th

Event Time

All Day

Urban Open Ladyblades + 
Urban Madness

We are very excited to announce the return of Urban Open: Ladyblades in Durham and even more excited to pair that up with the open-to-all Urban Madness - a March Madness themed tournament in line with the start of the NCAA tournament!

Both the Ladyblades tournament and Urban Madness are SOLD OUT.  Friday Night Skills, Spectator Tickets and After Party Tickets are still available!  

Practice Hours are available Friday afternoon, evening and Saturday Evening, register for a spot

Weekend Schedule!

Skills Rules

Ladyblades + Urban Madness Tickets



Ladyblade Only Vertical Broken Paint Around the World!  An oldy but a goody! We’ll be using a twist on traditional VATW rules to see who can make their way up the target board in the least number of throws, but in order to count, each throw MUST break paint. 

JAXE of all trades – Ladies Choice Doubles:  Our Ladyblade throwers will pick their teammates with no limitations! 15 throws with your partner to score the greatest number of points. First 5 throws are 1.5 rotation (standard scoring), Second 5 throws are regular throws, Premier scoring. Last 5 must be thrown Underhand (using Standard scoring).  On the 5th throw of every set of 5, each player MUST go for clutch.  The teams with the most points move on.  The captain of the team will register for BOTH people, be sure to put your partner’s name in the field when you sign up (and start thinking of a clever team name!)

Team Challenge:  This event is open to EVERYONE, teams must have at least two Ladyblades on their team of 4.  Teams with the highest score on Friday Night will compete for the trophy on Sunday.  We will be playing Press your Clutch, Team Big Axe Around the World and Variety Show Yahtzee.  Don’t worry if you don’t know what this means, just form a team and we’ll share all the deets.  P.S…. we’re not saying your team HAS to be from the same city, but there IS a traveling Team Challenge Trophy and it’s only going back to one location for the year.

Lucky 7's 1.5 Rotation Blackjack:  Try your luck at this variation of Blackjack.  You’ll have 7 throws to get as close to 21 as possible (without busting!) while throwing 1½ rotation hatchet.  Hit 3 Clutches in your first 3 throws and you win the Lucky 7’s Jackpot and can stop throwing, safe with your 21.   Once you miss a clutch, it is closed for the remainder of the game.  

All Skills Rules can be found here.  

Ladyblades tiered tournaments

We'll be running tiered, double elimination Tournaments to crown our Ladyblades champions! To split the field into their respective tiers, we'll be using the IATF's last 12 months average for throwers, Standard or Premier + 15%, whichever is higher. The number of Ladyblades that sign up will determine how many tiered tournaments we run, and how many champions we crown!

We believe that Tiered Tournaments are the best way to make sure that ALL levels of throwers can experience a competitive tournament environment, as well as have the chance to appear on a Live Stream for the finals.

Ladyblades is an inclusive definition and we welcome cis/trans women, genderqueer women and non-binary individuals who identify as a women in a way that is significant to them. 

Urban Madness Tournament

Taking a page out of both March Madness, and our Urban Only Swiss Tournaments in 2022 in Austin, we’re pleased to announce Urban Madness!

Urban Madness is a two stage tournament, with Stage 1 comprising of 4 independent Swiss tournaments, whose top 16 finishers progress to Stage 2, a 64 person single-elimination March Madness style bracket. Anyone can enter Urban Madness!

What is a Swiss Tournament again?

Head on over and have a read of our Blog post from August last year - . The two changes are that for Urban Madness, the tournament fields will be RANDOMLY split into 4 separate Swiss tournaments, and Urban Madness Swiss matches will be best 3 of 5 with "League" style Big Axe tiebreakers, using IATF Standard rules. There is no tiering, averages, or anything else to think of, you just show up and throw!

Why are you doing Swiss again?

We had GREAT feedback from everyone who came down to Austin for the Urban Only for our Swiss Tournaments, so expect to see more of these in the future. The key benefit for throwers in a Swiss format is that it is a non-eliminating Round Robin format, which guarantees everyone gets at least 4 (and if we sell enough tickets 5) matches before anyone gets eliminated. No more 0-2! But yes, four poor people will go 0-5.

The Swiss format is also self-leveling as it progresses. After each round, your next opponent will have the same (or a very similar) record to you, so you should have much more evenly matched matches as the Swiss tournament progresses.

So, what happens after the Swiss tournament finishes?

Great question! The top 16 seeds from each of the four Swiss tournaments progress to the 64 person March Madness style bracket! We’ll have some time between the Swiss tournaments ending and the bracket starting, so we’ll publish the bracket and then you and anyone else in the Axe Throwing community can make their own bracket predictions! The 64 thrower Single Elimination Urban Madness bracket will be best 3 of 5 with "Playoff" style Big Axe tiebreakers, using IATF Premier rules. We'll switch to best 4 of 7 for the semi-finals and the final!

But wait on, won’t I just be playing the same people I just played in Swiss, in the Urban Madness Bracket?

No! We’re going to shuffle the seeds across the four Regions of the Urban Madness bracket. We’re taking input on funny region names, but for now, assume it is East, West, South and Midwest, just like March Madness. The shuffling of seeds across the bracket will mean that you won’t play against someone who was in your Swiss tournament until at least the third round, assuming you make it that far! And all the 1 seeds have that sweet sweet run through to the final 4 baby 😊

Ok, I’m interested, what do you need from me?

We need a minimum of 64 throwers to come on this Urban Madness journey with us! 

If you've got questions, head on over to our Facebook event and ask them there!

Ticket information

To avoid any Ticketmaster style debacles (although I’m sure we’ll find a new way to fuck it up), we’re not going to have any cap on tickets when we put them on sale!

Ladyblades Tickets

Tickets are $100 and it would be AMAZING if we can get 96 throwers to be able to run 3 x 32 tiered double elimination tournaments. If we get 3 tournaments, we'll run an IATF Standard Rules low tier, an IATF Premier Rules high tier, and an IATF Premier Modified Rules (Premier bull, touch Clutch) mid tier. Last year we had 79 Ladyblades compete in our two tiered tournaments, please encourage all Ladyblades you know to sign up and come to Durham!

Urban Madness Tickets

Tickets are $120, and we can only accommodate 128 throwers for Urban Madness. 

Sell Out?

If Ladyblades or Urban Madness sells past 96 or 128 tickets respectively, we’ll use timestamps of sign ups to figure out who the first 96/128 folks are. Within 24 hours of tickets going on sale, we'll contact everyone to let them know if they are in, or if they're unlucky and on the waitlist. For anyone on the waitlist, we’ll give you the option of preserving your spot on the waitlist (because, let’s face it, life is still a bit uncertain, and you’ll likely get in as people drop out), or you can take a refund, but you’ll lose your spot on the waitlist if spots open up. Any waitlisters who don't make it into their tournaments will be refunded.

Discounts? Other questions?

If I want to compete in both Ladyblades AND Urban Madness, can I get a discount?

Yes! We'll be sending our Ladyblades a special discount code in their confirmation email to get $20 off their Urban Madness ticket!

What the fuck Matt, why is Urban Madness $120? This is BULLSHIT!

Swiss Tournaments are more matches than double elimination, you are getting more bang for your buck vs going 0-2. A 128 thrower double elimination tournament has 254 or 255 matches that get thrown, but Urban Madness is going to have 383 matches!

So I'm just meant to buy a ticket, and not know if I'm in?

We've had a couple of different swings at how to do ticket sales, all of which have their drawbacks. We've also looked at what other venues do, with ticket sales being final, and requiring throwers to find someone else to take their ticket if they want their money back, or throwers re-selling tickets at a premium, and those suck too! If we run a lottery, maybe we don't get enough people to have needed a lottery? My crystal ball is broken. We've also seen venues charge more to guarantee a spot, a pay to play type option. So now we're trying this way - it's still who types fastest, but hopefully nothing gets removed from people's carts out from under them, or errors come up, or anything else, and we'll get money back to folks who don't make it as quickly as possible, if we're fortunate enough to have that problem!

Also, why are you still reading down here. This must have taken you like 30 minutes to read through by now! If you think you know a better way to sell tickets, please tell us!

Weekend Schedule

We'll flesh this out more once we know how many attendees to expect, but below represents our best guess assuming we sell 96 Ladyblades Tournament tickets and 128 Urban Madness tickets!

Friday, March 17

6pm-10pm - Skills

Skills tickets will go on sale on February 22nd at 8pm Eastern!

Saturday, March 18

Ladyblades Tiered Tournaments Begin

Urban Madness Swiss Tournaments

Sunday, March 19

Ladyblades Tiered Tournament Finals

Urban Madness Bracket

Afterparty Raging

Thank You to our Amazing Sponsors!

Pabst Blue Ribbon

Elm City Axe Boards