Album: A Taste of the Sweet Nectar of Johnball

Posted by on Feb 24, 2013 in Featured Posts, Photos

Even a fleeting whiff of the game would fill your nostrils with nothing but pure joy.


Einstein once famously said, “The pursuit of truth and beauty is Johnball- an activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.”¬†

And now, just for you, 24 photos from across the wide and wild world of Johnball. You’ll see what that crazy theoretical physicist was talking about.




With Robby Prescott aka Tetra Lotus, a Johnballer extraordinaire.

“Civilize the mind but make savage the body.”

-Chairman Mao


Ryan Muenchow and Andrew Wolpers post-game celebration in Johnball

There are many things you will find if you take the time to observe a game of Johnball. One thing you will always find, however, is exuberant friendship and friendly exuberance.

Case in point: Ryan and Andrew after working together to win a game of Detonation.


Johnnie Football or Johnnie Johnball?

At other times, you might see people playing football on this Johnball field.


Just at Grand Forks playing Johnball with a great crew.

In a game of Johnball, everyone’s fate is administered by the johnball itself. When you control that ball you’re a herald of justice, a harbinger of death. It’s a frightening prospect in every respect.


Johnball in Minneapolis with Casey Prescott, Tim Olson, Hannie Renae, Laura Madsen, Nick Fro Faircloth, Jon Zelenak, Kevin O'Brien,  Turqouya Thomas, Kjell Olson.

The Minneapolis Chapter of Johnball: a cool crew of champions, a rockstar troupe of goofs.


UWEC Johnball launching the ball, kicking off the game. Certainly, a stunningly beautiful thing. With Robby Prescott, Carly Lorenz, Christian Ludwig, Eric Franzen, Dan Mazula, Michael Charles Frank,  Seanald Patrick Porten, Alexander Patrick Hurd, Lauren Beyer, and Jake Wszelaki.

“100 years from now kids will gaze upon this fine masterpiece in awe while on a field trip to some fancy museum whilst the tour guide spins wondrous tales of Johnball, “University of Wisconsin Stout Johnballer Carly Lorenz once commented.

She then went on to say, “And that could very well be a run-on sentence.”


College co-ed Johnballers form a phalanx, playing in University of Grand Forks North Dakota. Featuring Michael Jancik, Andrea Brandt, Cody Troop,  Zach Raden and Dave Weaver.

Noble North Dakotan Johnballers outfitted like the Eskimo warriors they are.


Starring Mango Steen and Curtis Parker. Set in Minneapoils, Minnesota. From "MCoJ on Tour."

This could be a poster for a kickbutt buddy cop movie. And by buddy cop movie, we mean Johnball buddy cop movie.

(It’s an obscure yet growing sub-genre.)


With Philip Adelman in Bellingham, MN. Activities for all ages. Johnball is super duper beautiful.

SJU Johnballer Phillip Adelman takes some time to show a small herd of young ‘uns what life is really all about.


Johnball as a recreational outdoor winter sport/game/funtivitiy starring Carson Mack in Eureka, Illinois.

The intensity of a Siberian Tiger, the grace of a Russian prima ballerina, the heart of the Brave Little Toaster.


Johnball at SJU / Saint John's University Tundra with Adam Steinbach and Ryan Wold.

“There is an art, or rather, a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.”

-The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy


Johnball game in progress at University of Minnesota Morris. With  with Matthew Anderson, Amanda Bell, Mitch Patzer, Travis Beck and Natalie Reynen.

“Awaken an old memory
Emblematical of love and war.
Happier-thoughted are the days spent
Marked down in Johnball-lore.”

-WB Yeats (1865-1939)


No, this isn't COD, ya dingus. It's Johnball, the most beautiful thing in the galaxy.

A bloodthirsty zombie attacks the last of the uninfected.


People in motion. Kablam. Whamo. Yours truly, Robby Prescott, Cody Fischer, and Alexander Hurd.

Motion Picture


Cute toddler girl playing an outdoor game. Johnball is a sport for all ages, all sizes.

Johnball warriors are found in all shapes and sizes.


SJU Football field, student club and activity, JEC presents Johnball with Lisa Knapek,  Matthew Pendleton, Adam Kunkel, Garrett Zeltinger. Photo by Genavieve Lawler.

Downright good times on Clemens Field at Saint John’s University.


At Johnball Nationals, four twentysomethings young adults had a full weekend. With Jen Wenmark, Justin Meredith, Victoria Sheild and Justin DeWitt. Passed out cool cats.



To the death. Pickup sports in the winter. Obscure snow games. Minnesota warriors.

Winter warfare.


A game from Lakeville Minnesota makes its way to Wisconsin Stout. Beautiful nature: dark clouds, shadows, and a freakin rainbow. Slightly handsome guy too.

Mother Nature has always been a big supporter of Johnball.


UND Grand Forks playjohnball. A game, a sport, a way of life (some say.) Power swing.

Inside the Ring of Death, heroes are made. These guys are like ninjas with Force powers.


The spirit of Katniss Everdeen is catching fire in the game of Johnball.

“The Hunger Games”: an alternative way to kick off any game of Johnball.

Ensuing bloodbath: 100% guaranteed.


Illegal cell phone use. Talking on phone with driving a johnball.

“No, I can talk. It’s fine. What’s up, Grandma?”


Looking fly, flying high. That's what this obscure sport of dodging balls taught me. It's kinda like dodgeball with bats.

The most important thing to do is to stare down the johnball and calmly show it no fear.


The fall leaves, the sun's rays, the majesty of friendship in motion. It's something unattainable that you can't live without.

The sun never sets on the Johnball empire.




Hope that was a reasonably enjoyable experience for you.


You’ll find more Johnball pictures here.
And videos here.
And squirrels here.


About the Author:¬†John Hilsen created Johnball alongside close friend William Bird in 2005. He currently calls Lakeville, MN his home and never understood why little girls like unicorns so much. They’re just horses with a killing device on their foreheads.