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NFAA Easton Yankton
Archery Complex

800 Archery Lane
Yankton, SD 57078
605-260-9282
info@neyac.org

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

City Discusses Archery Plans

While the “big picture” for archery development in the community is still coming together, the Yankton City Commission was told Monday about the work that is going into making it a reality.

The National Field Archery Association (NFAA), which has its national headquarters in Yankton, is partnering with the city in an attempt to have its facility designated as a Community Olympic Development Program.

“Ever since the NFAA moved to Yankton, it has been a continuing effort to capitalize on their presence here,” City Manager Doug Russell said. “We had discussions previously this year, including during discussions in Washington with the federal delegation, revolving around the Community Olympic Development Program.”

Bruce Cull, a Yankton businessman who is president of the NFAA, said the effort will coalesce Sept. 18, when legendary rock musician Ted Nugent will be in town for a day-long camp for kids. Nugent, along with Sens. Tim Johnson and John Thune, Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, Gov. Mike Rounds and representatives of the Easton Sports Development Foundation, has been invited to partake in a discussion on that weekend of Yankton's Ribfest about archery-related developments in the community.

“We're going to kick this thing off Sept. 18,” Cull said. “Ted is 100 percent behind anything that involves projectiles, whether it's bullets or arrows. The Eastons are definitely behind it. For us, I think it would be an incredible shot to the arm.”

The United States Olympic Committee has partnered with sport groups across the nation to create six such programs that provide training in fencing, weightlifting, judo and a variety of other activities. None of them offer archery.

Cull believes Yankton could be the first to do so with the lobbying efforts being putting into place. He said Jim Easton, who is a member of the United States Olympic Committee and was involved in the decision to have Yankton as the location of the Easton Sports Development Foundation's first archery training center, is excited about the idea.

“It was his first baby,” Cull said. “I think what Easton is getting ready to do is to endow these regional facilities, of which hopefully we are on the list. I think what we're doing here is something that is going to get us to the front of the pack. Something great can come out of this for the whole community.

“It's one of those things where it could springboard into so many other events, activities and development,” added Russell.

Cull said that, with the partnerships involved in the effort, Yankton appears to more than meet the criteria for being eligible for a Community Olympic Development Program. Furthermore, it only requires a small fee to apply, he said.

“I think the commission is behind you 100 percent to get something going with this,” Mayor David Knoff said. “We really appreciate your efforts.”

In other business, the commission discussed whether anything could be done to speed up the dispersal of traffic after major events like fireworks shows on the Fourth of July and during Riverboat Days. Also, Knoff wondered whether measures could be taken to improve pedestrian safety.

With 65 intersections in the downtown area, Russell said that it appears little can be done unless the city were to restrict parking to certain areas.

“That's one of the things that led us to just have an open event where people work their ways out,” he said. “Quite honestly, it may be the most efficient method to get it out other than restricting parking.”

As it is, Russell said the downtown is generally cleared out within 45 minutes.

Commissioner Bill Ellingson said people just need to have patience.

“When the fireworks are over, don't rush out. Just sit there and look at the view. If you really want to get out of there quick, park two blocks north of Fourth Street and walk down. There is such a volume (of vehicles) to get out of a small place, I don't think a cop at every corner would do you any good.”

Russell said it's an issue he and city staff will continue to investigate.

“It's one of those questions that doesn't go away,” he said. “If opportunities emerge or a new idea comes through … we'll take a look at it.”

Also Monday, the commission:

• approved a special events parking ordinance that will allow for the towing of vehicles that are in the designated area. Signs will be posted before the event warning motorists of when their vehicles must be moved;

• held a first hearing for an ordinance that would expand the times during which off-sale liquor licensees can sell their products. A state law that took effect July 1 allows sales up to 2 a.m. instead of midnight. It also allows sales on Memorial Day. The ordinance would parallel the state law; and

• held an executive session to discuss labor negotiations.