ABOUT THE VERMONT FENCING ALLIANCE

Next round of beginner classes starts in April! Contact us to get on our email list.

We offer an active program of recreational fencing and competitive training for people age 9 through adult. Our activities include foil and epee classes at all levels, occasional beginning sabre classes, open fencing, a regional league for friendly competition, and travel to meets throughout New England and beyond. Whether you want to go for the gold, or just try a little swashbuckling for fun and exercise, the VFA warmly welcomes beginners.

Our unique Junior Team program is open by invitation to experienced fencers ages 13-18. In return for their effort and dedication, Junior Team members receive free instruction, extra training and coaching at meets. The success of the program is attested to by the medals the young athletes bring home, and more importantly, by the fun they have and the lessons they learn about sportsmanship and teamwork.

Head coach Viveka Fox, a former all-Ivy fencer and North Atlantic womens foil champion, has over 40 years of fencing experience. She is the founder and past president of the USFA Green Mountain Division, and a nationally certified referee. She is a USFCA accredited Moniteur (instructor). In 2014, Viveka ranked 3rd in the USA in Vet50 womens foil, and qualified for Veteran World Championships in Hungary, where she finished 13th in her age group. She finished the 2015-16 season ranked 6th in the USA in her age group. She believes that fencing is not just another sport, but is a creative way of thinking and moving that links us to the past and allows us to express ourselves as individuals. She is a great believer in and supporter of lifelong athletes and grassroots fencing. When not fencing, she plays in the New England roots music band Atlantic Crossing, the Celtic band Frost and Fire, and tries to spend as much time as possible outdoors.

Volunteer teaching assistants:
Don Selby (Charlotte): Don is an epee fencer who returned to the sport with great enthusiasm some years after trying it in college. He has served as president and treasurer of the Green Mt Division. When not fencing, he is out on the water dragonboating or sailing, or at work as a product testing engineer for Country Home Products.
Ray Schuppe (Charlotte): Ray fences all three weapons and has embraced the sport fully after taking it up as an adult to get in shape. He is a rated referee, past treasurer and tireless volunteer within the Green Mt Division, as well as an assistant coach of the UVM team. Ray works as an engineer at IBM.
Deb Hogan (Middlebury): Deb competes in epee, and is well respected regionally as a referee. She took up fencing a year or two after her sons started because it was more fun than waiting around for their class to finish. Deb and her husband operate a dairy farm in Leicester.
Adam Glazer (Middlebury): Adam took up fencing as an adult, and competes in epee. He is an illustrator and graphic designer, which explains why the VFA has a cool logo and so many great t-shirts.

Private Lessons
Private lessons for advanced students are available from coach Geoff Butler. Geoff recently relocated to Vermont from Virginia, where he had many years experience coaching and running fencing clubs. His specialty is epee, but he offers private lessons by appointment in all 3 weapons. Geoff's other skills include fine woodworking and bicycle racing, and he blogs about fencing at www.myepeecoach.com.
In addition, Viveka offers private lessons to advanced students on Wednesday or Thursday afternoon in Vergennes.

Watch VFA coach Viveka Fox, and members of the Junior Team program in a local "Going for the Gold" segment from August, 2016:
www.mynbc5.com/article/go-for-the-gold-nbc-5s-abby-isaacs-takes-a-stab-at-fencing/3039121

Watch VFA coach Viveka Fox, 2015 Junior Team captain Jack Brisson, and members of the Junior Team program in a local "spotlight on sports" segment from September, 2014:
www.wptz.com/sports/local-sports/locals-find-passion-in-the-sport-of-fencing/27995552

Listen to coach Viveka Fox talk about fencing on Vermont Public Radio's Vermont Edition in July, 2014:
www.digital.vpr.net/post/summer-school-how-fence

Listen to VFA fencers and others talk about why they love fencing on the nationally broadcast NPR program "Only a Game". This segment was produced by North Country Public Radio's Brian Mann at the 2011 Ticonderoga Challenge Outdoor Epee Tournament. Check it out on-line: http://onlyagame.wbur.org/2011/06/04/epee

Fencing for young children: Fencing has complex rules (not intuitive) and requires a high degree of hand-eye and body coordination. Our classes are fast paced, and geared for older children, teens and adults. We would rather have a child wait until he or she is old enough to have a successful experience in our classes than to have the child give up in frustration. Our minimum age for students is 9; however a mature and focussed 8-year-old may join if a parent takes the class along with the child. There is no upper age limit for fencing-we have club members who are over 60 years old, and really enjoy our adult beginner students! If you have a child who is interested in fencing but too young to join the VFA, you can cultivate the child's interest by bringing him or her to observe a class and/or watch a tournament. Spectators are welcome at all of our activities free of charge.

See Schedule for details on classes and practices in Middlebury and Charlotte.

For more information on other Green Mountain Division member clubs, go to www.gmdfencing.org

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