Male archer shooting outdoors

Start Archery Week: planning tips from Tamar Valley Archers

March 8th 2022
Vicky Sartain

Start Archery Week will take place 14-22 May 2022, a nationwide celebration of all things archery. Tamar Valley Archers' Declan Ross-Thomas shares how last year went for their event.

Over the next 10 weeks, we’ll be highlighting previous Big Weekend/Start Archery Week events that have enjoyed fantastic success. If you’re hoping to help your club organise Start Archery Week in May, and are not sure where to start, look out for these best practice case studies every Tuesday, right up until Start Archery Week begins.

Declan Ross-Thomas from Tamar Valley Archers kicks off the first in our series:

Promoting your event locally

We approached local newspapers and radio to promote our event. Think ahead too: consider asking a creative club member if they can shoot a fun video of this year’s event for your website, and get members to share on their own channels. You can also send the video to local journalists or influencers ahead of next year’s event to help capture their attention.

Using banners and bunting everywhere

Our archery range is a little hidden away and difficult to attract the public. We used Start Archery Week bunting where people could see it, within the boundary of our property.

Start Archery Week bunting

Providing a range of activities

We tried different things to interest people of all ages: Arrows targets; target archery; clout shoot at dustbin with flu-flu arrows; and archery golf using flu-flu arrows.

Adding a competitive element

This year we are considering trying a 252 style competition. For example, we could set a challenge to win a badge for sharp shooting – e.g. ‘AGB Start Archery Week Target Achiever’, or ‘AGB Start Archery Week Clout Achiever’. This will remind people of their day and how much fun archery is!

Archery at outdoor range

Planning for bad weather

We invested in pop-up gazebos that could be linked together to form an undercover shooting line – going for something sturdier meant they could be reused not just for shooting but also for events – e.g. BBQ, refreshments etc., and keeping equipment dry. There was little we could do other than monitor the local weather forecast, but providing somewhere for guests to shoot in the dry meant our Arrows shoot with juniors was well protected.

Outdoor archery range

Declan said: “Everyone who attended our Start Archery Week last year got a chance to try everything we offered. We also provided hospitality with BBQ and soft drinks and snacks etc.

“Our Start Archery Week bunting is still in place and has been useful in continuing to advertise what we do. We’ve suffered road closures due to maintenance work and obstructions due to bad weather – and the rerouted traffic has as a consequence seen our signage. We’ve also received several enquiries as to what archery entails. We’ll keep the bunting in place; it has weathered extremely well and continues to encourage passers-by to make enquires.”

Refreshments at archery range

Will your club celebrate Start Archery Week?

Please let us know how you are hoping to take part by completing this Expression of Interest form

This does not commit you at this stage, but would really help us build a picture of what we hope will be a big, national birthday celebration of archery.

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