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The Lake Park Perspective

The Lake Park Perspective

Tabletop Gaming Club “Gathers” Weekly at EC

Moksh Majmudar
The Tabletop Gaming Club utilizing the East Campus Collaboration Center after school. Front left, Nathan Lamb (LP ‘24); back left, Mr. Foleno; back right, Jack Kaemerer (LP ‘24); front right, Alex Navarette (LP ‘24).

Seven years ago, Lake Park teacher Mr. Michael Foleno was in his classroom hanging around with a few of his students, gathered at a small table chatting away about a particular game they all enjoyed.
“We all shared a passion for board games, specifically a game called Magic: The Gathering, which is a fantasy card game filled with social and lively action,” Mr. Foleno said. “We all just sat there in silence at one point, until we all kind of just said, ‘Hey, do we wanna just start a club?’ We collected all the signatures, set up a few tables, and it all stemmed from that point on.”
Tabletop Gaming Club is an after school club where students can come in and play board and card games of all types. Magic: The Gathering and D&D (Dungeons and Dragons) are the two most favored games here, but the club plays other games as well, such as Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh.
“It’s a common misconception that Tabletop gaming club is a club designed for playing video games, but that is far from the truth,” Mr. Foleno said. “There are no screens here! You won’t find anyone playing Super Smash Bros or Mario Kart.”
For the past 7 years, Mr.Foleno has been in charge of the group, and all throughout, the club has been fairly successful.
“We have had excellent attendance every single week ever since I started this. We can sometimes get up to 40 students in here, which can make it hard to keep up,” commented Mr.Foleno.
“Part of what draws people here is the community. Everyone is just so welcoming of one another, and it is very easy to build friendships,” Jack Kaemerer (LP ‘24) said.
“We have a very close-knit community at this club. It’s a great atmosphere where you get to know everyone and formulate relationships with other students who have similar interests,” Nathan Lamb (LP ‘24) said.
Students who join this club all have a huge interest and appreciation for games. People come from all different backgrounds in the world of gaming, whether that’s playing video games, card games, or board games.
Kaemerer said that his interest in joining this club stemmed all the way from elementary school collecting pokemon cards.
He explained, “My interest in games started in elementary school, where I was collecting and trading Pokemon cards with others. It was something I just did on the side for fun. After a long time, many years later, I opened them back up, and said to myself, ‘What if I actually play the game of Pokemon with these, following the rules and stuff?’ It went from trying out something new to becoming a passion of mine.”
“I made a rule called the social contract,” Mr. Foleno said. “If anyone takes the games too seriously, or is just being a jerk, we would ask them to leave.”
He added, “this is to keep the club in a non-toxic environment. It’s not about winning or losing, it’s about having fun. We never play competitively against other schools and don’t compete for trophies.”
Mr. Foleno saw an increase in the club’s performance over the past few years, but there is still always an opportunity to do better.
“Getting more people involved in this group has always been a goal of mine. I would love to get more people to join, and with that, I would also like to expand the floor to add more games to our line up.”
If you are interested in joining the Tabletop Gaming Club, they meet every Thursday 3:00-5:00, and their meetings are usually held in the East Campus library, (room E167). They would love if you stopped by.
You can use the remind code “b6e8f6” or email Mr. Foleno if you would like to learn more at [email protected].

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Moksh Majmudar
Moksh Majmudar, Staff Writer
LP '27
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