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Robin Hoods to take to the woods

By March 24, 2022No Comments
Young Lloydminster archers Hudson Charbonneau, 11, and Silas Skinner, nine, finished first and second, respectively, in the Compound Pre-Cub division at the recent Canadian Regional Indoor Championships. Supplied Photo

 

The Lloydminster & Area Archers Association expects to hit a bullseye with its latest project.

The association is building an Archery Canada-certified outdoor field and 3D archery course at its shared Lloydminster Fish and Game Association’s Big Gully Lake location.  

“We’re pretty excited about this build just to have a competition-ready certified course; that’s a big deal,” said archery association president, Garth Cobb.

“This is a permanent set up year-round.”

Cobb says the property is perfect for 3D and field archery to set up a challenging course using the lay of the land and natural features.

“It’s ideal because we’ve got trees, we’ve got open fields, we’ve got hillsides for upshots and down shots. It’s going to be a great opportunity,” he said.

Fundraising is well underway to raise the estimated $35,000 cost of the venue.

“We’ve been able to secure a few grants already and we’ve able to secure about eight community business sponsors,” said Cobb last week.

There are also some donations in-kind on the way, along with the potential for some community grants.

The archery group plans to buy new 3D targets from Reinhart Targets in the United States that cost about $600 a pop, along with some blocks or backstops for paper targets at about $900 a piece.

The idea is to start with 12 runs or shooting lanes and go from there.

“So, basically, it will be set up like a golf course,” said Cobb.

The association is banking on the “build it and they will come” formula based on the popularity of these archery setups.

“Archers travel for this stuff,” said Cobb.

He says some of the field competitions held at the Lloydminster Fish and Game Youth Centre draw participants from Saskatoon and Edmonton.

“Before COVID, we used to have that indoor 3D classic in the whole of the exhibition grounds, and we had people from southern Alberta, B.C. — everything,” said Cobb.

“It can definitely bring business in.” 

The association is hoping to have the site up and running by the end of June for its first event, but Cobb says the reality might actually be July or August.

“We’re aiming for the end of June, but first of all, we’ve got to raise the funding, then we got to secure the equipment, then we got to wait for the supply chain stuff to allow us to get it,” he said.    

News of the project will likely help the archery association bring back adult members who weren’t allowed to use the dedicated archery facility at the youth centre during the pandemic.

“We were able to keep our youth programs going and that’s all we could keep going,” said Cobb.

“Right now we have about 65 members, but historically we’ve had 120 members.”

He says the new archery course is a big selling point.

Cobb got into archery five years ago because his daughter took up the sport and he likes the challenge.

“It’s certainly an individual sport. You’re competing against yourself to get better,” he said.

The association has developed many champion archers such as 11-year-old Hudson Charbonneau and nine-year-old Silas Skinner, who finished first and second, respectively, at the recent Canadian Regional Indoor Championship in the Compound Pre-Cub division.

The results rank them first and second in Canada as well.

Adult board member, Erin McGladdery, was the 2019 world International Bowhunting Organization (IBO) champion.

“We turn out some really quality archers We’ve got so many dedicated archers,” said Cobb.