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NFAA Easton Yankton
Archery Complex

800 Archery Lane
Yankton, SD 57078


Weekdays: 9am - 9pm
Saturday: 10am - 7pm
Sunday: 12pm - 7pm

Archers Set for Huge Week

Prestigious archery tournaments are nothing new to Yankton.

It's just that having four events, all within seven days, is something “entirely new”, according to National Field Archery Association (NFAA) president Bruce Cull.

Asked this week what preparations go into hosting four big-time tournaments, Cull chuckled and said, “A lot.”

Yankton will host three national tournaments over the next week, as part of the World Outdoor Archery Festival at the Easton Archery Center.

The event - which will feature an appearance next Wednesday by Gov. Dennis Daugaard - begins with the USA Archery (USAA) National Field Championships today (Saturday) and Sunday, followed by the three bigger competitions.

• NFAA Outdoor National Championships, next Monday through Wednesday.

• USAA National Target Championships, next Wednesday through Friday.

• Hoyt World Open, July 30, with Sunday, July 31 featuring team trials for the Pan American Games.

A majority of archers will compete in all four events, while others will specialize in other field or target rounds, depending on their specific divisions.

Because of the ongoing flooding concerns on the Missouri River, the NFAA had to bring in people from Florida, Indiana and Kentucky to redesign three ranges that are underwater, Cull said.

“Basically, it's a lot of setting up targets and stands, and everything else inside the main building,” he said. “This year in particular, our field ranges got hit hard because of the flooding.

“Half of our fields are full of water, so it makes it a little bit of a challenge.”

The USAA National Field Championships begin today at 9 a.m. with Unmarked field rounds, followed by Marked field rounds Sunday starting at 9 a.m.

Opening ceremonies for the NFAA Outdoor National Championships begin Sunday night, followed by a Pro-Am shoot. Competition in that event gets underway Monday.

Each tournament will feature archers traversing the various field targets around the complex, Cull said.

“For the first time, the NFAA teamed up with USA Archery to have our field events together,” he said. “Theirs (USAA) is very similar to our walkaround tournament in the trees.”

The only day over the next week that will feature overlapping tournaments will be next Wednesday, when the NFAA Outdoors and the USAA Target Nationals are contested.

Also that day, the NFAA will host an awards presentation and an Easton Complex expansion announcement, which will be attended by Gov. Daugaard.

“The format this year is really interesting,” Cull said. “There's not one particular time people have to be here. Most will be here the whole time, but some will come next week.”

The festival will offer a record $54,800 in potential prize money, and all archers who participate will be eligible to compete in next Saturday's new car shoot-off.

Cull said the added prize money brings a “lot of credibility to the tournaments.”

Among the nationally-renowned archers registered are the top three professional males in the NFAA Shooter of the Year standings - Dave Cousins (Maine), Tim Gillingham (Utah) and Logan Wilde (Utah).

The top professional female archer, Samantha Neal (New York), is also registered.

To ensure fairness among all archers, the NFAA cut the annual outdoor championships from the traditional five-day event down to three days. The previous format had two optional days for the Field and Hunter rounds, with archers taking their highest scores, but now, all three days are mandatory.

Two years ago, Yankton hosted the International Field Archery Association (IFAA) World Bowhunter Championships, an event that brought participants from literally all four corners of the globe.

And according to Cull, his organization was notified recently that it will host the 2014 World Field Archery Championships in Yankton.

With the NFAA headquarters firmly planted in Yankton and the new Olympic range in place, the sport continues to gain in popularity, Cull said.

“We've obviously increased every year, and we've got a lot of big tournaments on the horizon,” he said. “As people are exposed to the incredible complex we have here, I think they'll start to realize that Yankton is becoming the place to come for archery.”