Photo courtesy of Evan Fitzgerald.

LADORA, Iowa — Ladora (population 281) is a small farming community 40 miles west of Iowa City that is home of a foodie destination that is quickly developing a strong following—the Ladora Bank Bistro where executive chef Jim and his wife Holli Vido have created a restaurant inside of a renovated bank that is on the national register of historic places. Iowa Public Television has labeled it a hidden gem and they serve an eclectic blend of locally sourced American style tapas along with fine wines and craft beers.

Chef Vido became a fan of kubb a couple years ago after being introduced to it by his friends. With the help of Pat Rupp and Kolonie Kubb members, they have hosted kubb play days the past two years outside of the bistro. This year they also coordinated with Kubb United to host their first organized tournament called KubbToberfest using Kubb United’s Rules for Open Play and the Klassic format.

Eleven teams used six pitches with six rounds of qualification and eight team elimination bracket. A lot of new players were introduced to the sport of kubb. Lots of spectators and fans of the bistro were present to check out the festivities. KubbToberfest featured a variety of craft beers served from Millstream Brewery, live music, and the real star of the day was the German themed menu served from a food truck by Chef Vido and Sean Curry that was brought in for the day. Some dishes available included a variety of brats, Rueben egg rolls and a German version of poutine that was extremely well-received.

In the end, it was the Kubb Minions (Cole Carlson, Evan Fitzgerald) facing off against Pat Rupp and Cody Walter (whose chiropractic business sponsored the trophies) from the Iowa River Assassins in a best of three-game match. In the two games, the Kubb Minions were able to jump off to a fast start, but Iowa River Assassins battled back to put 10 in play with some great inkasting and 8 meter play from Rupp. In the second game, Walter had a huge round where he cleared a very tough triple followed by two 8 meters to put them back in the game. In both games, the Minions were able to clear the 10 field kubbs and Carlson toppled the king to win his first tournament and collect the KubbToberfest trophies just as darkness was approaching.

It was a great day of kubb and Oktoberfest-style festivities that tournament organizer Jim Vido wants to expand into a full blown festival.

Final Results

  1. Kubb Minions (Cole Carlson—Belle Plaine, IA; Evan Fitzgerald—Roscoe, IL)
  2. Iowa River Assassins (Pat Rupp—Elberon, IA; Cody Walter—Belle Plaine, IA)
  3. 78 Oddballs (Aaron Hultquist—Belle Plaine, IA; Greg Johnson—Belle Plaine, IA)