More than 300 young archers will square off in competition when the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Archery in the Schools Program (AIS) hosts its state championship tournament on Saturday, March 2, at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix.
The event begins with competitor check-in at 8 a.m., followed by staggered group competition at 9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., and an awards ceremony around 3:15 p.m. (time approximate).
This is the culminating event for Arizona’s AIS youth participants in grades 4-12 to test their skills, qualify for nationals, and earn a chance for college scholarships.
Arizona’s program, administered by the Game and Fish Department, is part of the National Archery in the Schools Program, which promotes international-style target archery as part of the in-school curriculum to improve educational performance and participation in the shooting sports.
Students, parents and educators have lauded the program for teaching life skills such as focus, responsibility and discipline. Core content covers archery history, safety, technique, equipment, mental concentration, core-strengthening physical fitness, and self-improvement. Before presenting the two-week archery course, teachers undergo an eight-hour National Archery in the Schools Program basic archery instructor training program.
To get to the archery ranges at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility, take I-17 to Carefree Highway and head west for 1.5 miles to the first stoplight. Turn right at the stoplight and follow the signs to the archery ranges. Spectators are welcome.
Image courtesy Arizona Game and Fish Department