Teens begin epic quest at Boardman library

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.Teens came to the Boardman library on Jan. 17 to create characters for their upcoming Dungeons and Dragons campaign, Apprentice's Inn. The program was created and is run by teens from the library's Teen Advisory Board.

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.The first meeting of the Apprentice's Inn group centered around making characters with abilities and backstories. Over the course of the next several months, the group will embark on a fantasy adventure.

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.The Boardman library's Teen Advisory Board created the Dungeons and Dragons event. Connor Zimmer (left), Daniel Pirone and Aidan Wittman (right) were the driving forces in making the event.

By ZACK SHIVELY

zshively@vindy.com

Teenagers gathered in the Boardman library’s meeting room on Jan. 17 to create characters for their future fantasy adventures.

Members of the library’s Teen Advisory Board (TAB) created a program for the teenagers to run a Dungeons and Dragons campaign. They met for the first time to make their characters that they will use throughout the quest.

Boardman librarian Amy Burkard supervises the library program, titled “Apprentice’s Inn,“ but the creation of the event came from Daniel Pirone, a long-time member of the TAB group.

Pirone came to the TAB meetings with Dungeons and Dragons guides and materials that he checked out from the library, Burkard recalled. The books sparked the interest of other members of the TAB group who had played the game before or had wanted to play the game.

The TAB group decided to create the Apprentice’s Inn program because of the interest, since the role of the group is to get teenagers more involved with the library. They spent about four meetings planning the event, which included naming the program and making certain they had all the materials needed between the library and group members.

Burkard said the program gives them a safe space to play and join together, as members come from different schools. The group allows teenagers to meet new people who have a shared interest in fantasy.

She said the library has done this type of event in the past and there seems to be a growing interest in the game again because of media such as the Netflix show “Stranger Things,“ where the characters have their own Dungeons and Dragons campaign.

The group spent most of their first meeting creating their characters. They used a beginner’s worksheet to help them. Each person, aside from the dungeon masters, chose their character’s name, class, race, alignment, skills, personality and attributes, as well as many other details relating to the character’s abilities and background. The dungeon masters do not play as characters, but instead control the adventure and the way the story plays out.

In future months, the group will go on their adventure. Through the campaign, the group will split into two different parties with two dungeon masters. Both groups of adventurers will head on a quest to fight evil. Eventually, the two groups will combine near the end of their campaign.

They chose to name their campaign the Apprentice’s Inn for a reason. First, the members of the group are mostly new, some having never played Dungeons and Dragons at all, so they chose “apprentice” because they are just learning the game. They decided on “inn“ because it is a common setting and beginning place for new campaigns.

The Apprentice’s Inn program occurs on the third Wednesday of each month. The group will have pre-designed characters for those who wish to join the campaign once they have begun their quest.

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