Students take their best shots at state archery tournament

SPEARFISH, S.D. — For the past 12 years, South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks has put on the National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) State Tournament.

“The funding is all through the parks department, which is amazing for our kids,” says Brant Glader, P.E. teacher at Red Shirt School. “Everything they provide, all the equipment for the kids, they provide the training for the teachers. They provide everything. The tournament is free, the kids that enter it get a free T-shirt. It’s just a really awesome event.”

State Archery TournamentAs the sport continues to grow, new teams have entered the mix.

“We’ve had the program that was part of our Lakota class, and so I went and got trained up this year, me and my partner. We’re just going here and actually we’re off to a pretty good start,” says Lower Brule Day School ROTC coordinator and coach, Lt. Col. Kenneth Sosa.

In addition to its connection to cultural roots, archery helps these students get more involved in their schools.

“You know, the school’s big into basketball and football and it’s just another sport that some of those kids who don’t play those close contact sports can come out and support their school,” Lt. Col. Sosa adds. 

Organizers say archery is unique in that it’s a sport anyone can be a part of.

“One of the great things about archery is just about anybody can excel at it. You don’t have to be the biggest. You don’t have to be the strongest. You don’t have to be the fastest,” says South Dakota NASP Specialist, Curt Robertson. “It takes patience and perseverance and we want every child to have a chance to succeed. We’re really teaching life skills that they’re going to use throughout their work, and their school careers.”

In some years, over 10,000 students statewide took part in the program.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News