Published On: Thu, Jan 16th, 2014

New archery group aims to teach area kids about safety, fun

LAUREL —  Close to 30 kids in Cedar County are having fun, entering competitions and learning safety rules on how to use a bow and arrow.

Ella Vance, Laurel, is one of the instructors for the local 4-H Archery group which has been meeting in the old gym at the Laurel-Concord-Coleridge School in Laurel.

The Archery program, which is part of the Nebraska 4-H Shooting Sports Program, is a year round activity according to Vance.

“We started in November. We have 27 kids — boys and girls. The kids are really excited about it. They have grown so much,” Vance said. “We meet twice a month. We will be practicing outside as soon as the weather permits. It has been a great way to start the program.”

Several kids took part in a competition in Norfolk last weekend.

Berniece McCorkindale, a third grade LCC student, took second-place honors in her division.

Four-six students will take part in the Nebraska State 4-H Archery Tournament in Columbus Jan. 24-25.

Many of the kids have their own bow and arrows, although some equipment is available through a purchase that was made with funds from the 4-H Council.

Bow and arrow sets showed up on gift wish lists for several of the local kids this last Christmas according to Vance.

Nine-year old Jeremiah Polak, Coleridge, who takes part in the 4-H Archery program, received a bow and arrow as one of his gifts.

Vance is a Nebraska Hunter Education Instructor, certified through the Game and Parks Commission.

Vance has been hunting since she was a young girl.

“It was a family thing. I hunted with my dad, mom, brothers and uncles,” Vance said.

Vance said she has never hunted with a bow and arrow, as she prefers using a rifle.

Ella’s husband, Jay Vance, is the Principal at Laurel-Concord-Coleridge High School.

The Vance family includes seven year-old Ethan and Lilly, who is four.