MSS, Lost Thunder Pre-Release & Halloween Costume Contest This Sunday!

This Sunday at the Fincastle Pokemon Gym will be a day that should satisfy just about anyone’s Pokemon needs.  If you like the video game and play in the Mid-Season Showdown, you might match up against the #6 ranked Junior in the World (that’s right, we said the World).  If you follow the Trading Card Game, then surely you want to be one of the 1st to get cards from the newest set, Sun & Moon: Lost Thunder.  If costuming and cosplay is your thing, then come vie for the title of Costume Contest Winner.  That is about as full of a day of pokemon as one can fit into the metropolis of Fincastle! Continue reading


Changes At Gym For 2018-2019 Season

The Fincastle Gym Leaders are working through some new schedules, which includes an increase in the number of shows that our store, Dark Moon Cards & Games, attends.  As they are on the weekends, they obviously conflict with our league at times.  We’ve been working up our plans to post here, which was delayed thanks to a recent loan from a friend.  Gym Leader Joel (the author of these articles) was loaned a copy of “God of War” by a friend and has admittedly been drawn into the story-line of the game over the last two weeks… playing when he should have been writing a few posts.  What you can you do… it’s a really cool game.  Hopefully that tidbit of info might explain if Gym Leader Joel tries to summon you with a hearty, “Boy!” during league play.  At any rate, here are a few changes at our league. Continue reading

No League Sunday 9/30

MolEHTu Don’t forget there is no Pokemon League this week at the Fincastle Library.  That doesn’t mean you have to skip a trip to the library though!  Their annual Book Sale is going on Friday and Saturday, so please stop by and support our community Library.

The Gym Leaders will see you back next Sunday for League as usual, and then we’ll head into a flurry of local Trading Card and Video Game Events.  Stay tuned here and check out the Upcoming Events page for details.

2018 World Championships Recap & Photos From Nashville

The Fincastle Gym Leaders came back home from their trip to the 2018 Pokemon World Championships in Nashville, TN.  Upon returning, we immediately had to pack up for GEXCON, in D.C. on the following weekend, so we are unfortunately delayed in getting this report out.  While not competing in the main event, Gym Leaders Joel, Logan and Georgia did try their hand at the Nashville Open, a regional-level tournament held on Saturday.  They were also there to cheer on Ridge and Anna Radtke, as they competed in their first Video Game World Championship.  Overall the weekend was a really cool.  There were a multitude of things to see, including a massive Mega Construx Blastoise accompanied by its previous forms, a diorama to end all dioramas, a decked out Pokemon Center full of unique things to buy and of course, lots of Nashville themed decorations throughout the hall.   The weekend full of competitions had its strikes and gutters, ups and downs for The Gym.  As the Dude once said, you know, sometimes you eat the bar, and, sometimes uh, you know….  Alas, The Gym abides. Continue reading

Fincastle’s Own “Generals” Ready For World Championships

The Fincastle Pokemon Gym is proud to announce that two of its own are on their way to the 2018 Pokemon World Championships in Nashville, TN, this coming weekend, August 24th – 26th.  Siblings Ridge and Anna Radtke have both qualified for the video game event in their respective age divisions.  They are the charter members of The Gym’s team, Hee-Haw’s Generals, and are the first active members of The Gym to earn invitations to the event under the tutelage of its founders, Joel & Marthe Honts and their children, Logan and Georgia.  Logan and Georgia have earned a combined 6 invitations to past World Championships, stretching back to 2011.  In 2016, Georgia became the 1st from Fincastle to earn an invite to the video game event.  Georgia, who qualified for both the trading card game and video game championships in 2016, was forced to choose between the two, ultimately picking the card competition.  This year marks the first time local players will compete in the video game event. Continue reading

League Challenge Results & Congratulations to Noah R, v1.0!

The Gym Leaders have been busier than one-eyed cat watching two mouse holes.  Gym Leader Joel hoped to post this last week, but could not get free time to do so.  With that being said, it’s time to catch up on happenings at The Gym.  Yesterday, we hosted a League Challenge in Fincastle, while three of our leaders were battling at a League Cup in Charlotte.  Last Sunday (8/12), we had another first-time winner of a Gym Leader Challenge.  Let’s get to the details. Continue reading

Pokemon 2018 TCG Rotation – Sun & Moon-on!

The Pokemon Company and Play!Pokemon announced its 2018 TCG rotation… back in May.  Why?  “Why” is an often asked and rarely answered question for a lot actions taken by the corporation.  Our speculation as to this “why” is similar to the scenario of the “Top Cut” website (remember the original online site with “Pooka”, where all net-deckers went to get their lists).   The Top Cut was taking too much internet traffic away from  So, Pokemon hired Pooka (the site’s creator) to write and commentate for them, thus improving their service and eliminating a competitor.  Of course, dozens of other sites popped up in his absence and the entire community had to embrace net-decking just to keep up, thus turning to many other internet sources.  Mission not accomplished.  Our annual rotation article is our site’s biggest draw, and the subject in general draws lots of traffic to various YouTube channels and other sites.  So, Pokemon’s response is… just throw it out there in May.  Solid plan.  The discussion of “why’s” is not why we’re here today, so let’s move on to the reason we are here, the rotation. Continue reading

New Site For Dark Moon C & G, Celestial Storm Pre-Releases Begin 7/21!

The Fincastle Pokemon Gym’s card store and retail business, Dark Moon Cards and Games, just launched a new and updated website.  We are going to be taking our show on the road a little more often over the next few months and of course will be hosted our 3rd Roanoke Regional Championship this November.  Updates on where we’ll be and what is new at Dark Moon and The Fincastle Gym can be found there.  From that site you can link directly to our store, our Facebook page, this site and our Regionals site.  All of our events are listed there, as well as here.  Speaking of events… Continue reading

Congratulations William, v2.0 & v3.0!

We pointed out in an article on his first badge at the Fincastle Pokemon Gym how a trainer at our league, William W, was really diving into the TCG and trying to improve.  Improve he most certainly has.  At our Expanded Regional tournament in May, William picked up 3 wins in a format that was pretty foreign to what he is accustomed to playing.  The only downside to his play at league (which is no fault of his) is that he has challenged Gym Leaders on Sundays that have been right in the middle of some very busy weeks for us.  We have not had the time sit down a give a proper account of his last several challenges.  We don’t have the numbers in front of us here in Berlin (yeah, I said Berlin… more on that later), but we know that during his last 4 or 5 attempts for badges, William earned 2 more wins. Continue reading

May 2018 Blue Ridge Regional Photos

As many of you have seen, The Fincastle Pokemon Gym was awarded its 3rd Regional Championship right here in Roanoke, coming this November.  That of course leaves us a bit confused when we try to reference it, or the recent one.  Both take place in 2018, so we can’t just say the “2018 Blue Ridge Regional” anymore.  It’s bad to confuse old people like that.  While we are working on branding, we thought we’d share some photos from the Memorial Day event, as we’ve finally had time to sit down and organize them.  We will follow-up soon with some more info on the November 2018 event.

We want to jump right into the cool stuff… the Cosplay Contest.  Last year, our 1st cosplay competition, was a lot of fun, as we had a small group excellent entrants.  This year was the real deal.  As we stated before, we are so glad that we had an experienced judge, Mera Babineaux to evaluate the contestants.  There is no way we could have picked the best out of this group on our own.

****All of these amazing photos are thanks to the event staff photographer:  Doug Morisoli.

Here are a few more of the event.

We will be back with some info on our next event.  Check back here often.  We also will have a League Challenge (Standard Format) at the Gym at our regular time this Sunday, 6/17.  See you there!