The kids first started archery about a year ago. Since then, Isaac has participated in “Archery in the Schools” and the state tournament. Abigail’s school doesn’t have that program yet but she loves to shoot when she can. Back when we started this deal, I thought it would be a good family-together thing to do. We didn’t really have the equipment or a range to make all that happen (I figure the city frowns on shooting a compound bow in the back yard).
Fast forward a bit…Isaac and Abigail both received bows as presents from their grandparents. Last weekend Emily and the kids surprised me with an early father’s day present…my own bow! And it’s camo! The day they gave it to me, I decided we needed to make the “family shooting thing” happen (I wonder what sort of weird google searches will bring people to this page now!)
On Sunday we headed to Kanawha State Forest with Emily’s parents to
be devoured by the mosquitoes try our luck at target shooting. We started off a bit rough (and that was before we even started shooting), but once we got into the groove, we had a great time! Isaac was able to do some “shooting while moving” exercises during which he shot a good bullseye from 15-20 yards. Abigail did great also. She is finally strong enough to draw the bow such that every single arrow she shot stuck!
Granddad and I had fun…that’s all I’ll say about that. We didn’t have to comb the hillside which was covered in poison ivy and some sort of ridiculous scratchy plant which would make a nun cuss, too many times searching for arrows. We did donate one arrow to the archery gods but we gained someone else’s previous sacrifice so it was a wash, arrow-wise!
Anyhow, it was a great time and we have a date to go back out this weekend to shoot some more! I think we may have hit the nail on the head for a good family hobby!
WV has a program called Archery in the Schools, sponsored by the Department of Natural Resources. Just over 50 schools from across the state field teams where students stay after school and learn about archery, practice technique, and try not to completely destroy the nerves of their instructor. Their best archers go to the state tournament held in Charleston. Last weekend Isaac shot for his school.
Isaac attends a pretty small school. Their team sets up their shooting range in the cafeteria, which, of course, is pretty small. Apparently they can only shoot at a distance of 10 meters. Isaac practices a lot and has become a really great shot at that distance. He just seems to have an eye for it.
As a little side-step, it sort of cracks me up that there is a school sponsored “weapons in the classroom” program state-wide. Anyhow, Archery in the Schools is a fantastic program and lets a lot of kids participate in a sport who otherwise may not be able. The Civic Center in Charleston was packed this weekend with kids from all over the state. These kids were a great bunch but most were not your typical jock. Many came in camo and boots and looked like they were ready to go out in the field immediately after the competition.
Isaac’s school shot in the first group. Each archer got a practice round of 5 arrows at 10 meters followed by 3 volleys of 5 arrows each which were scored. After the 10 meter shoot, the students shot the same way from 15 meters. Click this link to see a video of Isaac shooting. He is target #2. I love the sound of all the arrows hitting the targets!
Isaac shot his 10 meter round and did absolutely fantastic. Remember I mentioned that they could only shoot from 10 meters at his school? Well it showed in the 15 meter competition. At the 15 meter range, I suppose Isaac got only half what he got at 10 meters. He was pretty disappointed. His grandparents just bought him one of the competition bows so I suspect we have a good bit of shooting ahead of us this summer…at 15 meters.
And who says they don’t teach the metric system in schools…