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USPL Chicago Open
May 29-31, 2010
CPX Sports - Elwood, Illinois

The original Chicago Open, NPPL sanctioned tournaments had its roots in the woods at the Badlandz paintball field. After the PSP/NPPL split both leagues have run tournaments at various locations. While the PSP has returned to the Badlandz, USPL/NPPL had found a new Chicago venue in the form of CPX, a rival regional field to the Badlandz.

Originally developed under the umbrella of Brass Eagle, Challenge Park Xtreme was the brainchild of long time paintballer and RPGer, Forest Brown. Brown had a vision for the future of paintball being as exciting and big budget as serious theme parks. Although CPX has since changed hands, it still stands as one of the most advanced paintball parks in the world, with various theme fields that were built and designed by Brown and a team of set and theme park design and construction team. Visitors to CPX get to play in a typical midwest downtown, post apocalyptic ruins, a wild jungle temple or any of a number of other themed fields.

The NPPL tournament would not be the only activity at CPX over the Memorial Day Weekend. While the 7-man players battled it out on the tourney fields, the scenario/fantasy fields of the par would be filled with scenario players as Viper Scenarios produced its third annual "Living Legends" game. Designed as a homecoming of sorts, the Living Legends game brings out a lot of the old names in the sport and industry for a time to play some paintball in a more relaxed atmosphere, and meet together with no-longer often seen friends.

Combinging the two events on the same weekend, may have put a heavier load on the CPX facilities and crew, but at least conceptually, it stood to also benefit the paintball industry. Over the last few years, tournament paintball - the primary area where trade shows introduce the paintball playing public to new products, have seen a decline in attendance. With smaller crowds, comes less exposure for trade show booths. Two events in one venue - especially when they cater to different types of players, so they will not be competing with one another - means a bigger turn-out in trade show and general spectator attendance - literally a win for all involved. With larger crowds trade show exhibition is more viable, and that means more sponsorship support for events, which means more and better quality events for the players.

Games started on Saturday morning - a day later than the usual weekend schedule, but the three day weekend also meant a better opportunity for players to attend - less time off needed from school or work the week before.


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