Clare County Review & Marion Press News

Faces in the Crowd: Curis Crowl

Just a couple of years ago, ax throwing wasn’t anywhere on Curtis Crowl’s radar.
But after working at Skeggox – a locally owned Ax Throwing Company in Cadillac – for the last year and a half, he’s become a bit of an Ax Master.
In fact, that’s his title at Skeggox, where he gives lessons, and ensures that all his customers have a fun, safe time on the lanes.
And he’s gotten so good at his newfound passion, that some friends now call him Curt-Ax.
But there’s more to Curtis than throwing axes.
And it starts with his family and friends. Along with his wife Lindsay, daughter Sophia, and son Atreyu, the Crowl family enjoys having get-togethers with loved ones as much as anything. And that includes their family and friends from downstate, from the Marion area, and their friends from Skeggox.
We caught up with Curtis recently where we learned a little more about his life, and a little more about throwing an ax. We learned that Curtis Crowl is certainly more than just another face in the crowd.

Marion Press: When did you first get into throwing axes?
Curtis: [Former owner] Andrew [Faulman] called me – I was doing some seasonal work – and he called me and said he wanted some help. He was running the place, and I was free in the wintertime, so I decided to jump on board.
MP: What all goes into ax throwing? What should people expect at Skeggox?
Curtis: When you come in, we give you a coaching lesson, get you comfortable throwing your axes because it’s not something you do every day. It’s more of a hatchet; everyone’s got one in their garage. You’re 12 foot away from the target, and the target is probably about 3 feet around. Like darts, or something that you’d see at a shooting range.
We’ve got leagues, and we guarantee a good time. We guarantee everyone’s going to stick an ax before they leave. We have little foam axes for kids; you’ve got to be 12 and up in order to throw. Kids can still come in, we’ve got a TV in here for the kids, and they can throw foam axes for free.
Monday is league night. Wednesdays and Thursdays we’re open 4 – 8. Friday and Saturday are open noon to 10, and Sunday we’re open noon to 8. We’re always open to staying open later or earlier if a group of people want to come in; we take reservations.
MP: What do you enjoy the most about working at Skeggox?
Curtis: The customer interaction. I’ve made a lot of lifelong friends since I got here. You come in here as a customer, and you leave as another family member. You’ve got friends and family once you leave.
And we try to donate free throwing time to any cause that we can. We’ve donated to schools, Pine River and McBain. We try to keep everything in the community. If someone comes to us for any fundraiser, we try to donate some throwing time and we just try to help out.
MP: Where were you born and raised?
Curtis: I was born in Hillsdale, Michigan. Pretty much raised in the Marion – Harrison area, Temple. I moved away from Marion my sophomore year, and graduated down in Garden City in ’03.
MP: What kept you busy as a kid? What are some of your favorite memories from going to school at Marion?
Curtis: Track and field. I did high jump, pole vault, and hurdles. A little bit of basketball. Playing basketball and football at the park, but never anything organized. When I was younger, I would always help out with the basketball team, and help out with the track teams. My life always revolved around sports.
MP: After high school, where did life take you?
Curtis: After I graduated from Garden City, I moved back here and went to Baker College for a year and studied corrections. Then I ended up moving back down to Garden City and I just started working. I did a little bit of repo work, and then for the last 10 years before this job, I worked in road construction. But I fell in love with the ax throwing and just started doing that. [When you love what you do] it’s not work; we’re here, we hang out, and our business is mostly based off from regulars.
MP: Outside of throwing axes, what keeps you busy?
Curtis: The family. The two kids, Sophia, Atreyu, and the wife, Lindsay. Visiting other family, traveling down state and visiting family. We host a lot of get-togethers at our house; we’ll have people over and do some barbequing. We have Friendsgiving every year; it’s Thanksgiving, but with a bunch of friends.
And I work at RexAir. RexAir by day, and axes by night. I assemble Rainbow Vacuums at RexAir.
MP: What do you enjoy the most about living in northern Michigan?
Curtis: The peace and quiet. The woods, the trees, the quiet. Mostly humble people. My family’s here. I don’t miss the city lights. I’ve lived down there, and I love to visit, but this is home.
MP: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Curtis: “Be the person that you needed when you were little.”
MP: Who have been your role models over the years?
Curtis: My mom, Robin Hatfield. She’s just always been there. She’s always worked hard to provide for us. She’s done everything she could to make sure we had food, to make sure we had the newest shoes. She’s just always there.

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