The D.C. Everest Gaming Club began in the 1989-1990 school year under the leadership of Christian Ammon, at the time a young Jr. High German teacher (23 years old). Five students and Mr. Ammon periodically met to play simple board games and roleplaying games throughout the semester. The Games Master Series (Shogun, Axis & Allies, and Fortress America) were the main board games enjoyed by all. The Club played mainly on Friday after- noons and evenings. Through, by the 1996 school year, the D.C. Everest School District officially acknowledged the Gaming Club as an official club within the district. To gain membership, you had to enjoy playing games and in grades seven through twelve. By the 1999-2000 school year, the Club had grown considerably to a total of 74 members.
The first EVERCON, originally called “The D.C. Everest Gaming Club’s Mid-Winter Gaming Event”, occurred in 2000. Not counting club members, the Con drew a total of eighteen public attendees. Shortly afterward, student leaders were elected to positions, allowing for students to have a more active role in deciding the direction of the Club. The Club continued to experience high membership and enjoyment from students, who gradually became highly interested in tabletop roleplaying games. Countless campaigns of BESM, D&D, and White Wolf RPGs were played. In addition, the Club started to incorporate anime related content with the leadership of Adam Rickert from 2001-2009. Alumni from this era of membership speak fondly of memories even to this day.
With a push from students, the Club expanded in 2006 to the Sr. High, where Travis Greil agreed to be advisor of the Sr. High branch, while Christian continued to maintain the branch at the Jr. High. During this period, the Club grew at rates faster than any of its’ members or advisors could expect. The Gaming Club was, and still is, one of the only clubs in the entire district that had elected officers, as well as a full student written constitution that has acted as a guiding principle for the future of the Club.
With the powerful addition of new student leaders, the Gaming Club also flourished with the help of Matthew Kehl, a former Club member and EVERCON Director that continued to be a strong adult role model for club members well beyond graduating from high school. The Club was saddened by the passing of Matthew this past October, but we continue to remember and honor him for the amazing work he has done. A memorial scholarship has been established in his name, which will be giving out its first award in May. Donations will be collected at the Front Door. We greatly appreciate your support for this wonderful scholarship.
The past few years EVERCON has grown substantially with the help of Kris Peterson, one of the EVERCON Co-Directors, as well as Jonathan Elmergreen, a club alumnus and EVERCON Co-Director. Christian, Kris, and Jonathan than have worked extensively with student leaders over the past four years–many of who continue to come back each year to help, even after graduating–resulting in the exponential growth of EVERCON. Each year, the Club attempts to push the boundaries on what has been done and continues to move forward in a progressive direction.
Within the community, the Gaming Club has become a positive force dedicated to helping organizations that hold high the same ideals and values of the Gaming Club–helping others, diversity, and education. Each year, the Club chooses to donate a large portion of their funds generated from EVERCON to local organizations in need. Since it first became involved in philanthropy, the Club has given out a total of $5250.
Recently, the Gaming Club has branched out and made connections with other related gaming areas. Specifically, the Club welcomes a new panel to EVERCON in 2012 titled, Games and Education: Why Games Are Good For You (or: the most delicious broccoli you’ve ever had to eat), which was presented by graduate students from the University of Wisconsin–Madison who study video games and learning. This is an area within education that is surging forward at full speed and the Gaming Club supports and welcomes any research that supports the idea that games are important places for learning, especially in the Digital Age. We look forward to the innovations and insights their research will bring to the world.
If you are a D.C. Everest Area student from grades 8-12, we would love for you to become a member. If interested, please contact Christian Ammon at: email@example.com
And the search for the Holy Grail continues…