DEC to host Annual School Archery Tournament

Photo courtesy of NYS DEC and NASP Student archer at NYS National Archery in the Schools state tournament.

DEC recently announced that hundreds of students representing 37 schools across New York State will be competing in the 12th Annual National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) state tournament at the State Fairgrounds in Syracuse on Friday, March 20.

It described the tournament’s stresses “… students’ diligence and focus in the practice of target archery.” Winners of the state competition will qualify for the national tournament to be held this spring.

I’m happy to report there are a number of local school districts that have NASP programs. In Greene County, participants include districts in Cairo-Durham and Hunter-Tannersville, with the newest addition, the Greenville Central School District, which implemented a NASP program within the past year.

In Columbia County, quite a few schools participate in NASP with one, the New Lebanon Jr./Sr. High School, scheduled to send a team to the upcoming state tournament in Syracuse.

A school I am very pleased to see attending the state tournament for the first time is the Central Park Middle School (CPMS) in Schenectady. Their NASP Program was started by Physical Education (PE) teacher, Spencer Martin.

Mr. Martin approached me some time ago while we were both assisted in getting the school’s first Fishing Club Program off the ground. He wanted to form an archery program at the inner-city school. I put him in touch with NASP administrators at DEC, and his program quickly progressed. Part of his motivation at the time was to introduce at-risk youth to the benefits of target archery competition. He quickly received district and community support for the idea.

Ed Gorch, of NY Bowhunters Inc., an organization which enthusiastically supported NASP since its inception, assisted Spencer with strategies for starting the program and for fund raising to get it established. Ed’s advice for parents who see recognize the many benefits of archery in the schools, is to ask school administrators why a NASP Program is not offered in their school.

“Since New York implemented the Archery in Schools program in 2008, more than 400 schools and 41,000 students have participated.”

NASP is growing globally. “More than four million students at 8,500 schools in 47 states and five countries have participated in NASP” introducing countless students to “…the joys of a life-long outdoor activity.” DEC stated, “Archery encourages students to focus, set goals, and work hard to achieve those goals.

The state tournament is the culmination of hundreds of hours of practice over the course of the school year and we wish the students good luck as they compete to reach the nationals.”

The NYS event will host 45 teams of students in one of three divisions: High School, grades 9-12; Middle School, grades 6-8; and Elementary School, grades 4-5. Awards are given out in each of the three divisions for 1st through 10th places.

Individuals who place in the Top 10 in their division, and teams that place first in each of the three divisions, qualify to compete and represent New York State at the NASP national tournament held in Louisville, Kentucky, in May.

The NASP Program builds self-esteem using a strictly positive reinforcement instruction model. It offers students who may not wish to compete in sports like football, baseball, and basketball, etc., a chance to compete and excel in a school sports program. It develops character and discipline and promotes involvement with school-based activities.

So, consider either getting “your” student to take a look at participating in a NASP Program. If one doesn’t yet exist in your district, let school administrators know about the benefits of NASP and ask them to start one right away. Districts are constantly seeking ways to enrich their educational platforms and the NASP model is a great way to help fulfill that mission.

Happy Hunting, Fishing and Trapping until next time.

News and Notes

Catskill Mountain Fish & Game Club to Hold Hunter Safety Class on March 28: The Catskill Mountain Fish & Game Club is holding a Hunter Safety Class on March 28th from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm at their clubhouse at 167 Hylan Road in Hunter.

You can go online to register through a link from DEC’s website at If you are not online you can get needed materials and homework in hardcopy form by contacting Bob Monteleone at 518-488-0240.

Norton Hill Wildlife Club to Host Hunter Safety Class in Time for Spring Youth Turkey Hunt: Bill Burger announced the Norton Hill Wildlife Club will host a Hunter Safety Class just in time for the Spring Youth Turkey Hunt.

The class, open to both youth (11and up) and adults, starts on Friday April 10, from 6- 9 p.m., and concludes on Saturday April 11 from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. It will be presented at the Norton Hill Wildlife Club at 946 Big Woods Road in Greenville.

The 2020 Spring Youth Turkey Hunt will take place on the weekend of April 25 and April 26. Licensed youth hunters 12-15 years of age can hunt the youth weekend with a licensed parent/guardian/mentor. (See DEC’s website for details of supervision/requirements.) You can register for this class online by going to and searching for “Hunter Education Courses.”

For more information on the class, call Bill Burger at 518-622-3295.

Craryville Rod & Gun Club Pistol License Class March 23: The Craryville Rod & Gun Club will hold a Pistol License Class March 23 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. at their club at 1641 County Route 11. Cost is $50 per person.

Participants must first get a pistol permit application form the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office in Greenport prior to attendance. To sign-up, call Kevin Hill at 518-821-4747 or Mike Kutski at 518-651-5860.

Craryville Rod & Gun Club Ham Shoot March 29: The Craryville Rod & Gun Club will also be hosting a “Ham Shoot” on March 29 at 10 a.m. They will be offering student discounts and “money shoots” with lots of prizes.

Greene County Chapter Ducks Unlimited Annual Dinner/Auction March 21 (Only a Limited Number of Tickets Remaining): Mark your calendars for this event. It will be held at Anthony’s Banquet Hall in Leeds on Saturday, March 21. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. with dinner at 7.

There will be a live as well as a silent auction after dinner with plenty of gun giveaways and other prizes. Tickets are available online; but they are going fast! Search using key words, “Greene County NY Ducks Unlimited Banquet.” For further information, call Dana Hanusik at 518-943-2729, Jeff Holiday at 518-943-1986, or Bob Sager at 518-731-6353.

Shooters Sports in Valatie Fur Buyer/Pistol Permit Class Schedule: Ron Alund will be at Shooters Sports in Valatie buying fur at the store on March 14 and April 11 2020 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Proprietor, Chris Nastke said pistol permit classes are held at the store with instructor Lew Hatch every third Saturday of the month from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The next class will be on March 21st. Call the store at 518-758-1488 well in advance for more information on what you need to do to show to sign up.

Remember to report poaching violations by calling 1-844-DEC-ECOS.

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*If you have a fishing or hunting report, photo, or event you would like to be considered for publication, you can send it to:

Johnson Newspapers 7.1


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