Archery 101: Mesa nighttime bow-and-arrow class is for all ages - East Valley Tribune: Outdoors

Archery 101: Mesa nighttime bow-and-arrow class is for all ages

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Posted: Sunday, September 1, 2013 12:00 pm | Updated: 7:45 am, Mon Sep 9, 2013.

Do you want to be the next Robin Hood or Katniss Everdeen? OK, OK, one step at a time: Start with the basics at the nighttime Archery 101 class at Usery Mountain Regional Park.

Taking up a new sport and fiddling with a bow under the desert sun didn’t sound so appealing to the park's “Ranger B” -- interpretive ranger Brennan Basler --so he decided teach his archery students under the evening lights of the park.

He teaches proper technique, safety and the fun of archery during a night of target shooting at one of the highest-rated archery ranges in the Western United States, said Basler.

The class is equipped with bows tailored for almost everyone, and special targets designed to absorb arrows are set up to accommodate children who are only able to shoot a very light bow.

“We have bows tailored for every age. We have had 8-year-olds to 80-year-olds attend,” Basler said. And, often times, the whole family will come out with multiple children and both parents to spend the evening taking the class.

Ranger B and his staff assist every student by teaching them correct technique, and safety, of archery from the time they pick up the bow to the time they retrieve their arrows.

After mastering the basics, many new archers follow up with Archery 202 offered at Usery Mountain Regional Park in the Fall. During the 202 class, students walk the archery course and put their new skills to the test.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-6349 or

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