Lancaster Archery Classic moves to Spooky Nook Sports

By on January 18, 2017
Lancaster Archery Classic’s top placing male winners in 2016 were: first place, Alex Wifler (center); second place, Reo Wilde (left), and third place, Braden Gellenthien.

Lancaster Archery Classic’s top placing male winners in 2016 were: first place, Alex Wifler (center); second place, Reo Wilde (left), and third place, Braden Gellenthien.

 

Whether you’re a fan of archery as a sport, a bow hunter, or someone who’s familiar with archery from high school gym class or Robin Hood movies, the 14th annual Lancaster Archery Classic will have something for you. This year’s event will be held Jan. 27 thorough 29 at Spooky Nook Sports, 2913 Spooky Nook Road, Manheim.

Hosted by Lancaster Archery Supply, the event, the largest indoor archery tournament on the east coast, will feature over 1,000 archers.

“If you follow archery, some of the best archers in the world will be here competing,” said PJ Reilly, a spokesperson for Lancaster Archery Supply.

 

Alex Wifler celebrates a winning shot. He won the title of 2016 Men's Pro Champion.

Alex Wifler celebrates a winning shot. He won the title of 2016 Men’s Pro Champion.

 

Among the competitors are four members of the 2016 US Olympic Team — Brady Ellison, Zachary Garrett, and Jake Kaminski; and female Olympian Mackenzie Brown. The US men earned a silver medal in team competition, and Ellison earned an individual bronze medal. Although Brown did not medal in Rio, she is the 2016 Lancaster Archery Classic women’s recurve champ and holds the record qualifying score in that division at 603.

“It’s pretty exciting to have them competing here. The neat thing about the Classic is that all of the archers are approachable, and anyone can enter. As a local competitor you could be shooting next to Brady Ellison, one of the most decorated archers in US history,” Reilly said, “The Olympic athletes will have their medals with them and we’re planning a special meet and greet activity with them, so it’s a great chance to see a medal up close.”

Lancaster Archery Classic competition kicks off Friday with qualifying rounds for each of the 15 divisions.

“That’s when you’ll see more than 400 archers standing shoulder-to-shoulder, shooting,” Reilly said.

 

Lancaster Archery Classic’s top placing female winners in 2016 were: first place, Sarah Lance (center); second place, Toja Cerna (left), and third place, Linda Ochoa-Anderson.

Lancaster Archery Classic’s top placing female winners in 2016 were: first place, Sarah Lance (center); second place, Toja Cerna (left), and third place, Linda Ochoa-Anderson.

 

He explained that each archer will shoot 60 arrows at a target 20 yards away, and a perfect score is 660. The top 64 or 32 archers –depending on the number of competitors – in each division are ranked, and then compete in a bracket-style competition.

“Under this format, you don’t have to be perfect in qualification. You just have to shoot well enough to qualify for the head-to-head bracket, and then hope to beat each of your opponents in 12-arrow matches,” Reilly said.

The top eight finishers will then meet in a shoot-up. How this works is that the eighth ranked archer shoots against the seventh ranked archer, then the winner shoots against the 6th place archer and so on..

“There are only two people on stage going against one another in these head-to-head competitions on Saturday afternoon and Sunday,” Reilly said. “That’s where it really gets interesting.”

Reilly pointed out that the event does draw spectators, and the new venue at the Nook is perfect for that. Not only are there spectator seating in the competition area, including some directly behind the archers, but there’s also a catwalk.  A pair of binoculars comes in handy for following where an archer’s arrow strikes the target.

 

A judge carefully examines a target to determine a competitor's score.

A judge carefully examines a target to determine a competitor’s score.

 

Among those cheering on the competitors will be Rob Kaufhold, Lancaster Archery Supply president and founder, who Reilly said is “passionate about the sport.” It’s that passion that led to the Lancaster Archery Classic in 2004.

Held at the ranges onsite at the store, the inaugural event drew 116 archers competing in five divisions. As the event drew more archers, more divisions were added and it outgrew the onsite ranges. After the 2014 competition, the venue shifted offsite — first to the Lancaster Host Resort in 2015 and then to Lanco Fieldhouse in 2016, and now to Nook Sports.

“What’s nice about our new venue at the Nook — T.R.U. Ball/Axcel Hall — is that we’ll be in one area for all the activities. It will be a better experience for both competitors and spectators,” Reilly said.

 

Toja Cerne at the 2016 Lancaster Archery Classic. She captured second place in the women's open pro division

Toja Cerne at the 2016 Lancaster Archery Classic. She captured second place in the women’s open pro division

 

Registration fees apply to competitors. Deadline for registration for competitors is Jan. 22. Archers will compete for over $150,000 in prize money, plus up to $190,000 in manufacturer contingency money.

Lancaster Archery Classic admission is free to spectators. However Nook Sports does charge a $5 parking fee. For more information on the event, visit lancasterarcherysupply.com/archery-classic.

Rochelle Shenk is a correspondent for the Lititz Record Express. She welcomes your comments and questions at RAASHENK@aol.com.

One Comment

  1. Andrea Brendict

    September 25, 2018 at 10:27 am

    Limbs on a modern compound bow are stiff compared to those in a recurve bow or an old-fashioned longbow, because it is not made from wood. From the point of view of energy efficiency, wood is nothing like the modern compound materials that are used in the best compound bow today.

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