Archery comes from the Latin word arcus, and although thousands of years ago archery was used for hunting and warfare, today it is a competitive sport and recreational activity.
Beyond recreation, many also enjoy the challenge of hunting with a bow and arrow.
The National Archery in School Program (NASP) started about 15 years ago. Last year Del Rio Elementary School in Chino Valley started an archery club, an after-school program for both boys and girls. Aaron and Edie Hulburd are two of the coaches in the program.
“Our kids, Hunter and Adeline, are both into archery, and that is what got us interested. When Del Rio started, we came on board to help start up the program,” Edie said.
“Each team is required to have both boys and girls on a team (fourth- and fifth-graders only at elementary school level). No experience necessary, and the school provides all the equipment and training. Practice is one day a week and the season runs from October to May,” Aaron said.
This year Edie will be staying at Del Rio to coach and Aaron will be helping to start the club at Chino Valley High School. This is a pay-to- play sport at all the schools, Del Rio, Heritage Middle School, and Chino Valley High School, and by late September all the information for joining the club will be in the schools.
“I think archery has helped our kids work through adversity and it is great for the girls as they can compete side by side with the boys. Our son Hunter was the 2016 Elementary Boys State Champion, and Adeline was the 2017 Girls Elementary State Champion,” Edie said.
“I love this because it is something I can do with my kids at home. To see all the kids master archery by the end of the season is amazing,” she said.
“I enjoy showing the kids how dedication and teamwork pays off. Last year we couldn’t enter the team at the beginning of the year because they were so inexperienced, then their hard work paid off and they won the Elementary School Arizona State Championship,” Aaron said.