top of page
SMAF Circle Text.png

We're back and better than ever!

April 13th & 14th, 2024
Saturday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm & Sunday, 8:00 am to 1:00 pm
The Holiday Inn, Saratoga Springs NY

Join us for two days of hands-on instructional workshops in striking, grappling, & weapons arts. There's also a Saturday Night Banquet with the Instructional Staff!

Martial Artists of all backgrounds and experience levels are welcome to participate.

The Saratoga Martial Arts Festival has been the Capital Region's Premier Martial Arts Gathering for over 20 years!

Festival Updates

Mar 12: Another instructor update!

We've added a bunch of returning instructors including John Borter and Trish Chiovari who will be teaching Irish Stick, RJ Marcaida representing Marcaida Kali, Director Emeritus Steven Pearlman, and returning for the first time since 2020, Roland Lavinge who will be teaching Tai Chi.

Feb 22: More instructors!

Jun Gotico & Terry Jovan are coming all the way from California to teach Stockton Multi-Style Escrima. Chris LaCava will be on hand for breaking people and putting them back together. Manny Jimenez will be teaching Daito Ryu and Anthony Quatrochi will instruct on JuJitsu.

Jan 30: Our first three instructors

Meet our first three instructors: the returning Chad Donzella, Nathan Marinone (whom folks got a preview of last year during a "new talent" showcase), and making their SMAF debut Gurus May and Michael Williams.

Jan 12: Tickets for SMAF packages are now available!

Book your room at The Holiday Inn at a discount of $152/night. This is a limited-time offer with a limited number of rooms. Book now!

Meet the 2024 Instructors

We will be updating with next instructors each week.


Indonesian & Filipino Arts

Chad Donzella

Chad has been training in armed and unarmed martial arts for more than 20 years. Chad’s primary instructors are his father, Dan Donzella, who now resides in Inverness Florida, and Rudy Duncan, who is based in Syracuse NY. The majority of his focus has
been in Indonesian and Filipino arts, in particular Willem Reeders’ Kuntao system. The Reeders’ Kuntao system is simply explained as having a flavor of Chinese hands/Indonesian feet.


Irish Arts

Trish Chiovari

Trish Chiovari has been training in the martial arts for more than a decade. She is an instructor in Modern Self-Defense Concepts and the co-instructor of the ABC Women’s Self-Defense program. She effectively utilizes both her experience in the martial arts as well as her training as a certified social worker to bring her unique and highly valuable insight to teaching women’s self-defense and personal safety.

Trish teaches Irish stick in partnership with John, is co-lead of the Whiskey Stick faction, and has been featured in a BBC article on Irish stick fighting as the only active female Irish stick fighting coach in the world (as of the writing of this bio dated 8/22).

John Borter and Trish Chiovari are the first coaches to be certified in the Doyle system in the US under Bernie Leddy, the Chieftain of the Doyle system.


Japanese Arts

Sensei Manny Jimenez

Manny Jimenez Sensei, 6th dan Daito Ryu Kiyamakai — Manny Jimenez has been training in the martial arts since 1973. He is the senior student of Roy Goldberg Shihan (the director of Kiyamakai) and a student of Kiyama Hayawo Shihan (the North American Director for Daito Ruy Aikijujutsu Kodokai) since 1995. Jimenez Sensei has been awarded the Kodokai Rank of 4th dan and the Hiden Mokuroku, the 1st scroll, from the Kodokai Hombu Dojo in Kitami, Japan. He received his 6th dan from Goldberg Shihan as well as the second scroll. Jimenez Sensei is currently the lead instructor for Daito Ryu Kiyamakai under Goldberg Shihan and is in charge of curriculum development for the organization.

Lacava - Photo.jpg

Filipino & Korean Arts

Chris LaCava

Chris has trained in the martial arts for almost 40 years. He has traveled around the world to train in martial arts, as well as acupuncture. Chris earned his 4th degree black belt in Hapkido and 1st degree in Kuhapdo under Grand Master Lim, Hyun-su in Daegu South Korea, Certified Force Necessary Advanced Knife Instructor under Hock Hockheim, and is a graduate, as well as an Instructor, of Stockton Multi-Style Escrima.


Irish Arts

John Borter

John has been training in the martial arts for more than 30 years and holds blackbelt ranks in multiple systems and the high rank of 6th degree blackbelt. He is the founder of Modern Self-Defense Concepts. He is also the creator of the ABC Women’s Self-Defense program, a renowned program taught in 12 countries. He teaches martial arts, self-defense, knife, tomahawk, Kubotan, and Irish stick classes and seminars to hundreds of people a year. John has also worked as a training consultant for law enforcement agencies.


He is the first Doyle Irish stick coach certified by Bernie Leddy in the US and teaches seminars around the country. He is also the creator and administrator the Facebook group “The Irish Stick”, the predominant Irish stick resource on social media.


Filipino Arts

Guro Jun Gotico

Jun Gotico graduated in 1991 in Leo Giron’s BahalaNa and promoted to Guro in 1993. He was one of the main instructors in GM Leo Giron’s Bahala Na Club No. 1, in the 1990’s and fought on the club’s famous Fight Team that competed in numerous full-contact tournaments throughout the West Coast and Hawaii.

In the early 2000’s Jun started training in SLD (Serrada/Largo/Decuerdas) under Dentoy Revillar, Bobby Antuna and Dexter Labonog. In 2006, along with other long time martial artists, Guro June founded Stockton Multi-Style Escrima Club, developing and showcasing the main styles that Stockton is famous for.


Filipino Arts

Guro Terry Joven

Terry graduated in 2004 from the Giron Bahala Na System and was promoted to Guro in 2005.

In addition to his experience with Bahala Na, Terry has trained in Tenio Decuerdas Escrima, Renbukai and Go Shin Jitsu Kai.
Along with Maestro June Gotico Guro Terry is one of the founding instructors of Bahala Na Multistyle, eventually becoming Stockton Multi-Style Escrima

Lavigne, Roland - Bio Pics.jpg

Chinese and Indonesian Arts

Master Roland Lavigne

Master Roland Lavigne has been certified as an instructor by the William C. C. Chen School of Tai Chi Chuan since 2011. In 2023, Great Grandmaster William C. C. Chen awarded Master Lavigne the highest level diploma from the William C. C. Chen School of Tai Chi Chuan.


Master Lavigne holds a fourth degree in Pukulan Kilat Pentjak Silat under Master Jim DeVoe; through the Cemo Sai Temple and the Institute of Pentjak Silat. He owns and operates Eight Star Martial Arts/Red Dragon Karate School in Ballston Spa, New York — teaching Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan, Pentjak Silat, and Qigong.


Filipino Arts

Guro R. J. Marcaida

RJ Marcaida was born and raised in the Philippines where he learned and trained FMA in such systems as:

  • Yaw-Yan under GM/Founder Nap Fernandez and GM Emiliano Zapata.

  • Kail/Escrima/Arnis from GM Tatang Illustrisimo/GM Tony Diego, Pekiti Tirsia (SGM Leo Gaje Jr.), Lameco (Guro Jun Pueblos), Cacoy Doce Pares (Master Raul Bunalos), and a little bit of Kali de Leon (Guro Jun De Leon).

R. J. currently teaches the Marcaida Kali system and has made appearances on the History Channel’s Forged In Fire series.


Chinese & Filipino Arts

Sifu Nathan Marinone

Sifu Nathan Marinone has been in the Martial Arts for over 30 years and has trained extensively in a wide range of Martial Art systems both along the east coast and across the country. He holds Full Instructor credentials under Sifu Greg Pichardo of Phoenix Martial Arts and is the Connecticut representative for the Magda Institute Association directed by Sifu Cass Magda. Sifu Nate has also been awarded the title of “Sifu” from Sijo Leung Ting 1st generation student, Sifu Ed Chow of New England Wing Chun and currently holds a 3rd degree Black Belt in Serrada Escrima under Hanshi Bruce Juchnik senior student, Guro Anthony Di Sarro.


Japanese, Chinese, and Burmese Arts

Steven Pearlman

The author of The Book of Martial Power and numerous articles on personal combatives, Dr. Steve Pearlman’s expertise focuses on the hidden scientific, biomechanical, and psychological forces that drive combative effectiveness across stylistic and national boundaries. Training since 1983, Steve has studied a range of martial arts from around the world. In addition to founding SMAF, he’s taught at Martial Arts seminars and festivals across the north eastern US. Steve teaches his personal “family style” of martial arts to a small group of students at the Avon Kempo Aikido Academy in Connecticut.


Filipino Arts

Percy Thomas

Percy Thomas has over thirty years of martial arts experience. He started his martial arts training with Tony"Moy Wu" Watts, in the Moy Yat Wing Chun kung fu system. He was promoted to a Wing Chun instructor in the late eighties.

He made the move to Rochester NY where he earned his college degree and was also teaching Wing Chun at the college and training in the Afto-Brazilian art of Capoeira. He met and then started learning the Filipino martial arts under Kuya Doug Marcaida. He moved back down to Westchester county NY in the late nineties.

A few years later he achieved his 4th degree blackbelt at The S.W.A.M. Martial Arts Academy in Queens NY. Under Sijo Abdul Mutakabbir. He received his orange/blue belt in capoeira under Mestre Ary Lima. He is currently training with Doug Marcaida and is an instructor in the Marcaida Kali system.

Anthony Quatrochi.jpg

Japanese Arts

Shihan Anthony Quatrochi

Shihan Anthony Quatrochi has been training in the martial arts since 1987, and has over 30 years as an instructor. A student of many martial arts systems and styles, it was not until he met his Japanese JuJitsu/Street Survival instructor that he realized that this was a lifelong discipline for him. Kokoro Kai JuJitsu, "The Spirit Style of the Gentle Art", is a unique Japanese-based system that other martial arts schools can easily adapt to their own system.


Shihan Quatrochi does not teach one modality of the JuJitsu discipline but focuses on the Martial Movements of the complete art. Martial Movements is the methodology by which gentle, effortless seeming motions can have extraordinary effect. Anthony Quatrochi's Martial Arts Institute has been a leading school in self-defense in Wappingers Falls, New York for over 20 years.  In 2023 the Dojo was proud to be voted as Hudson Valley's Best for Karate and Judo.


Filipino & Indonesian Arts

Guros May and Michael Williams

May Williams

  • Baringin Sakti Pencak Silat, Pendekar Muda

  • Dekiti Tirsia Siradas Kali, Senior Instructor

  • Kyushinryu Kenpo Jujutsu, Shodan

  • Oido De Caburata Arnis, Master Instructor


Michael Williams

Guro Michael Williams has an extensive history of training in martial arts. Guro Williams has been traveling and hosting martial arts camps to Southeast Asia with Grandmasters for over two decades. Guro Michael Williams is the owner and chief instructor of the Martial Arts Research Institute in Salem, Ma.


Japanese Arts

Sensei Rick Wolslayer

Sensei Wolslayer began studying Nihon Goshin Aikido, training with Sensei Robert B. MacEwen, Jr. in 1982 in Middletown, NY.

He earned his First Degree Black Belt in August, 1989, his Second Degree Black Belt in 1999 and his Third Degree Black Belt in February, 2020.

During college at Suny Albany, he started the SUNYA Aikido Club with Sensei Earl Layumas in 1990.

In October 12, 1992 he opened the Aikido School of Self Defense in the Albany, NY area.  He now teaches classes in Delmar, NY:

We will have more details to share about the festival soon.
In the meantime, you can check out the page for last year's festival
to get a sense of why SMAF has been the Capital Region's Premier
Martial Arts Gathering for over 20 years!

View 2023!
Check back soon for more instructors and schedule information!
And make sure to check out our Facebook page too.
bottom of page